Episode 27: Lawren Askinosie Chief Marketing Officer at Askinosie Chocolate

Episode description: From a young age Lawren Askinosie has been a driving force in the branding and everyday running of Askinosie Chocolate; from developing website copy at the dawn of the business to current strategic goals, short/long term sales plans that serve their 1000 retailers, as well community efforts. Alongside her father, Shawn Askinosie, they go beyond traditional bonds, having co-authored the 2017 book ‘Meaningful Work: A Quest To Do Great Business, Find Your Calling And Feed Your Soul’. They continue to innovate and delight the market with well-crafted and mission focused products, holding to their collective vocation of ‘Making the best chocolate possible and doing the most good possible.’

Lawren with her father and business partner Shawn Askinosie. photo credit: Askinosie Chocolate

Lawren with her father and business partner Shawn Askinosie. photo credit: Askinosie Chocolate

your vocation is the intersection of your passion, your talents, and what the world needs

Items discussed in this episode:
- Lawren’s role in creating and living company ethos
- Askinosie’s relationship to culture and marketing visionary Seth Godin
- 3 year process of writing ‘Meaningful Work’
- Your personal vocation aligning with your business vocation, and how to face small business challenges with your vocational filter
- The ever-changing chocolate and consumer landscape, 2007 to now
- How they educate on direct trade & consumers’ newfound knowledge
- Transparency and benchmarks, making case for $10-15 chocolate bars
- Their new 88% ‘Super Dark Blend’ their first blend on the market, released in January 2019 (link to view)
- Non-bar model for craft chocolate and making confections with shelf life in mind
- Doing right by farmers & amplifying the voices of women in cocoa

Cocoa farmer Monica Guaman holding (and featured on) the 72% Zamora, Amazonia dark chocolate bar by Askinosie. Photo credit: Askinosie Chocolate

Cocoa farmer Monica Guaman holding (and featured on) the 72% Zamora, Amazonia dark chocolate bar by Askinosie. Photo credit: Askinosie Chocolate

Links discussed:
This is Marketing by Seth Godin
Akimbo podcast by Seth Godin
Malt Balls with Tanzanian craft chocolate
CollaBARation™ bars from Askinosie in partnership with brands such as Heath Ceramics, Zingerman’s Deli, and Jeni’s Splendid Ice Cream


What chocolate would Lawren take to the Cosmos?
A whole slew. A bar from Patric, Dandelion, Soma, French Broad Chocolates, not to miss chocolate donuts, and hazelnut chocolate spread with goat cheese on a baguette!


More from Lawren* and Askinosie:
Chocolate University program a part of Askinosie’s way of doing business since 2009
2017 Transparency Report, including: advance payments to partners without interest, profit sharing, & total pay to farmers
Empowered Girls & Enlightened Boys programs; both teach self esteem, life skills, sex education and non-violence empowering ways to go through life. Read more about these at Shawn Askinosie’s blog.

*In coming weeks, Lawren will share news about a feminine hygiene initiative she’s been spearheading.

Website: Askinosie
Instagram: @askinosie
Twitter:  @askinosie
Facebook: askinosie.chocolate

Where to find Lauren, host of Well Tempered and chocolate maker at WKND Chocolate (now in Barcelona, Spain): 
Instagram: @wkndchocolate @welltemperedpodcast 
Facebook: WKND Chocolate 
Email: podcast@wkndchocolate.com

Join us at the Mujeres Milagros retreat in Santa Fe, New Mexico May 13-16!