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