During the 189th episode of “Marketing Today,” I interview Jim Geikie, one of the partners at One Better Ventures. This recording took place before a live audience in Durham, NC. Jim spent 18 years at Unilever, then joined Burt’s Bees where he led retail strategy, brand marketing and business development. He also led Cree’s entry into consumer lighting and the commercial strategy for skincare maker, Lalumiere. 

One Better Ventures nurtures and develops consumer brands that have a positive impact on the world. They advise, invest in and incubate mission-driven ventures with breakthrough sustainable business models.

Jim shares the importance of purpose for the success of companies. “The world is full of problems and there is nothing more powerful on the planet than business.” He discusses the obligation for companies to leave the world a better place as they make profits. One Better Ventures has the ability to “play this nice balance of avoiding work we aren’t good at, working a stage that we’re good at and being able to hand off appropriately.”

Highlights from this week’s “Marketing Today”: 

  • How purpose directly impacts profit. (03:50) 
  • The way to get big without “selling out.” (07:07) 
  • The high BS meter of consumers. (08:25)  
  • One Better Ventures focus on “growth stage” ventures. (09:05) 
  • Five things that matter when One Better Ventures assesses a company’s potential. (13:02) 
  • One Better Ventures’s focus on the health and wellness business. (15:43) 
  • Key “exits” for One Better Venture and three important lessons learned. (18:11) 
  • What’s next for One Better Ventures? (21:42)

Alan B. Hart is the creator and host of “Marketing Today with Alan Hart,” a weekly podcast where he interviews leading global marketing professionals and business leaders. Alan advises leading executives and marketing teams on opportunities around brand, customer experience, innovation and growth. He has consulted with Fortune 100 companies, but he is an entrepreneur at his core, having founded or served as an executive for nine startups.