Gary Conrad Walgren
Gary is a classically-trained consumer packaged goods (CPG) marketing executive with proven, successful strategic marketing and branding experience across a wide range of B2C and B2B industries.
Most recently, Gary led the marketing department and efforts of INC Research, a top 10 CRO. He applied proven B2C marketing methods into a B2B environment, creating an integrated digital marketing system that generated a 70% increase in brand awareness, contributed to the doubling of sales from $1 billion to $2 billion, and created over $37 million in measurable brand value.
Gary spent over ten years in global brand management with The Coca-Cola Company in the international marketing department of the company’s world headquarters in Atlanta, Georgia. He has managed and helped build some of the largest, best-known brands in the world.
While at Coca-Cola, Conrad had brand management responsibility for a $900 million global brand portfolio, including Dr. Pepper, Schweppes, and Canada Dry. He also had worldwide management responsibility for Fanta, the largest fruit-flavored soft drink brand in the world.
Gary developed The Coca-Cola Company’s global bottled water strategy, leading to the highly successful launches of Dasani water in the USA and BonAqua throughout Europe and Asia. He expanded Fresca into over twenty new markets worldwide, making it the sixth-largest brand in the company’s portfolio, and he assisted in positioning work on both diet Coke and Sprite.
As Director of Brand Development at Newell Rubbermaid Corporation, he led all brand-building programs for the $500 million Levolor window coverings business. He developed the first national TV ad campaign for Levolor that increased brand awareness +66%, firmly establishing Levolor as the most widely-known brand in the industry.
Gary’s expertise in global marketing strategy has made him a sought-after commentator on the world of Marketing and Branding. He has been interviewed and had his commentary quoted in various news stories and publications, including The Wall Street Journal, Dow Jones News, MSNBC, The Wall Street Journal Europe, Business 2.0, and The Atlanta Business Chronicle.
In addition to being a practitioner of marketing, Gary has also had his work published. His writing has appeared in Advances in Consumer Research and the business periodical Business 2.0.
Gary is a graduate of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, earning both an undergraduate degree in Advertising/Communication and an MBA with a concentration in Marketing.