illustration of a snail hiding from the aliens

Introducing a business-casual podcast for anyone ready to think so far outside the box they’ll forget what a box even is.

Speaking of boxes, Brandsplaining® is the soapbox for Obedient Agency founders Allie LeFevere and Lyndsay Sanders to spread their marketing ethos: Fun Sells® (Which is trademarked, so don’t even.) With tenacity, wit, and a dash of razzle-dazzle, every episode takes listeners into the neural-rollercoaster of this creative duo’s brain as they explain and experiment with their unique approach to branding.

True to Allie and Lyndsay’s insatiable habit of turning things on their head, every season of Brandsplaining features a different format. Let’s just say that if industry darlings like Blue Bunny, Clif Bar, Native, Argent, JOI, The University of Chicago, Alleyoop, Choice Organics, and The Dallas Cowboys take Obedient’s creative advice, listeners might want to too.

You can catch us on:


Brandsplaining Trailer

Meet the ‘Bad Girls of Branding’ and their new podcast, Brandsplaining®. In this lil trailer, you’ll hear from hosts Allie LeFevere and Lyndsay Rush on why traditional marketing is dead…and how they’re dancing on its grave. Equal parts business and entertainment, Brandsplaining® is a show about the most overlooked strategy in the game: fun. Listeners will learn how to stop banking on predictable, forgettable branding from the experts who have built notorious brands doing the exact opposite.

Allie and Lyndsay are founders of Obedient—the world’s first branding agency to specialize in fun and humor—and they’ve worked with brands like: Blue Bunny, Choice Organics, Native, CLIF Bar, The University of Chicago, The Dallas Cowboys, Argent, Alleyoop, and Lee Jeans. They also co-host the hit pop culture & comedy podcast, Fangasm and unscripted brainstorming video series, Can They Brand That?®. Their work has been featured in Adweek, The New York Times, Esquire, New York Magazine, VICE, HuffPo, MTV, and Buzzfeed), and they’re excited to bring their signature candor and comedy to the business podcasting scene.

Every week, Brandsplaining® will feature candid conversations with charismatic industry leaders who haven’t heard the name status quo in years. (The roster includes disruptive brands like THINX, Aviation Gin, and JOI.) Allie and Lyndsay weren’t sure if female entrepreneurs were allowed to start a podcast that wasn’t simply about being female entrepreneurs. Nevertheless, they podcasted®. Brandsplaining® is coming out late fall, so buckle up and follow Brandsplaining® on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter @obedientagency, or at for the latest updates on the podcast you always hoped existed.


Today’s episode is a g*damn treat because we got to talk to the hilarious, wicked smart Kejal MacDonald about her time working for Tushy and Thinx—two iconic brands that have mastered the art of using humor to humanize taboo topics.

Kejal is a literal brand master—with Masters Degree in Branding—and currently runs a marketing agency called Zuzu Digital, so it was a pure delight to pick Kejal’s brain about her time with these brands and hear her insights on the power of comedy to eliminate isolation and shame and bring a sense of truth and humanity to taboo topics.

A little background on the two brands we talked a ton about: Tushy makes bidet attachments that have introduced America to the derriere way that much of Europe and Asia has been accustomed to for decades—and they’ve relied on an arse-nal of puns to help them get the message to butts all across the US. They’ve been featured everywhere from Forbes, Vanity Fair, and The New York Times. We both have one and can attest to their greatness. Also, we took on Tushy for our Slogan Challenge that you can watch here.

Thinx is a feminine hygiene company known for their revolutionary reusable period underwear, their candid, bold voice, and getting their ads rejected from being on the New York subway. They also have a brand called SPEAX which is incontinence underwear, and BTWN which is specifically geared towards menstruating adolescents.

We covered a lot of ground with Kejal on a lot of really strong takeaways for anyone running a brand. Like:
—How hyper-specificity in your marketing allows for easy ideas
—Why EVERYONE should be using humor in their business…especially the ones most afraid of it
—How humor creates community and a rapport and relationship with your consumer
—Levity and inclusion and undoing stigmas
—How Ben & Jerry’s are killing it rn
—The link between laughter and brand likeability
—Thinking of brands as people with personalities
—Why you should stick with your strong POV
—How consistency and commitment are two keys in comedy
—Why puns get a bad rap
—And a thousand great tangents and callbacks and anecdotes in between…including a Bubba Sparxxx story you have to hear.

You can follow Kejal at @KejalMacDonald and @zuzudigital or at

Minute markers for your skimming pleasure (how dare you):
9:18 Spiller Qs
19:18 Branding Qs


Bottoms up, ‘Splainers, (a working fan group name we’re playing around with), because our new episode will leave you shaken (with laughter) and stirred (emotionally). Our guest this week is Adrian Molina, the Senior Brand Manager for Aviation American Gin—a renegade brand that has become a household name, re-energized an entire segment, and used self-aware, tradition-bucking humor to do it.

The Be There in Five podcast is a long-form show that explores all facets of popular culture in a comedic and analytic format. It regularly charts in the category top 200 on Apple Podcasts. No biggie. (Biggie.) We were actually guests last year and it was a blast. We admire Kate’s commitment to her creative direction because, throughout every pivot, her Brand Personality has stayed consistently rooted in humor, thoughtfulness, and the unmatched 90s/00s zeitgeist.

Kate is also our friend, a member of our pop culture song club (yes, that’s a thing), and simply an outstanding, bright, hilarious woman with a ton of insight to share on building a successful brand from scratch.

We talked about the importance of creating and sticking with a niche, how to stay in your lane, leveraging criticism to find your audience, teen poetry, why a bigger audience is not necessarily better, not over-editing yourself, maintaining integrity, saying no to shiny deals, and being proud to be an outlier in your industry.

You can find her on Instagram @bethereinfive or at her site

Minute markers for your skimming pleasure (how dare you):

5:23 Spiller Qs
18:30 Branding Qs


This week we talked with the word razzle-dazzle in human form: Kate Kennedy from the brand and podcast, Be There in Five. Kate is a former market research professional, author of a #1 new release book Twinkle, Twinkle, Social Media Star, seasoned entrepreneur, and pop culture commentator. (A quadruple threat, if you will.) Be There in Five took off with a viral ‘remindoormat’—that was sold in Nordstrom and featured in Teen Vogue, Glamour, and Buzzfeed— and has grown her business among various other categories in the last several years.

Besides being known as ‘Ryan Reynolds’ gin, Aviation Gin is the world’s highest-rated gin (97 points by Wine Enthusiast) and helped establish a new style of American gin—softer and smoother, with juniper in the background and citrus and floral notes in the front—resulting in more balanced cocktails. Or as Ryan Reynolds described the gin’s taste on Twitter in 2018, “If heaven and laughter made a baby while watching Titanic. But wetter.” Created by a unique bartender/distiller partnership, Aviation is crafted in small batches in Portland, Oregon.

Adrian was recently named one of Adweek’s “2020 Young Influentials Who Are Shaping Media, Marketing, and Tech,” and has over 10 years of branding and marketing experience in the wine and spirits industry.

We got to drink from his cup of knowledge as he spilled insights like:

How to bring excitement and energy to a brand that’s in a heritage-heavy industry

How to leverage pop culture humor into your brand

Ryan Reynolds’ creative process and comedic direction when it comes to ad campaigns and creative stunts

The story behind their Peloton parody ad last year,

How to balance brand consistency with a sense of spontaneity and surprise

The dirt on their viral social stunt this year,

How critical it is to have a deep and intimate understanding of your brand’s personality and what they would or wouldn’t say

Adrian’s Aviation Gin tattoo

Why comedy is the key to making sure people don’t feel ‘sold to’

What it’s like to get roasted by Hugh Jackman

The importance of self-awareness and empathy when infusing humor into your branding and marketing

How many legs Grimace has

The power of creative branding to inspire creativity from your audience (and in Aviation’s case, fan art)

How Aviation leverages a candid, ‘unmarketing’ tone of voice

Why Ryan Reynolds hired a plane to fly by Adrian’s apartment during the interview. (Okay, allegedly.)

The power of inside jokes to make a consumer feel seen and excited

P.S., the Aviation Cocktail Ingredients are as follows:

2 ounces gin

1/4 ounce maraschino liqueur

1/4 ounce crème de violette

1/2 ounce lemon juice (fresh)

Garnish: flamed lemon peel

To keep up with Adrian and Aviation, visit @aviationgin or @theadrianmolina on social.

Minute markers for your skimming pleasure (how dare you):
9:58 Spiller Qs
15:45 Branding Qs


We hope you’re hungry, ‘splainiacs (okay, wait, this one is actually really good) because today’s episode is full of beans—emotionally and topically. Did you know that expression means ‘lively; in high spirits’? Which works out great because our guest today is the founder and CEO of A Dozen Cousins, Ibraheem Basir, and his joyful energy and branding insights will put you in high spirits indeed.

A Dozen Cousins is a natural (and delightful) food brand making convenient products inspired by traditional Creole, Caribbean and Latin American dishes and their first product is a line of authentic, regional beans that are cooked in nutrient-dense avocado oil. Are you getting our ‘full of beans’ reference now? Great. The brand is inspired by his childhood growing up in the culinary melting pot of Brooklyn and is named after his daughter and her 11 cousins. (We, naturally, spend several minutes discussing how fun the name is to say and how much memorability and charisma it exudes.) Prior to launching A Dozen Cousins, Ibraheem obtained his MBA from the Wharton School of Business and served as a Marketing Manager on a number of natural food brands including Larabar and Annie’s Organic.

We chatted with Ibraheem about his ethos of celebrating food as a source of joy and a means of forging connection, and he walked us through how he developed the A Dozen Cousins brand personality from a visual and verbal storytelling perspective.

Other food for thought and belly laughs included:

His desire to bring laughter and joy back to the dinner table, and his upbringing with 9 siblings

Harnessing that ‘inside joke’ playfulness into A Dozen Cousin’s branding

How when it comes to the natural food space, health and culture and convenience do not have to be at odds

The story behind the brand name and logo and why word of mouth is so impacted by the name you choose

Branding lessons he learned during his time working in marketing for Larabar and Annie’s Organic

The social impact component central to his company’s mission

The important role that authenticity plays in using humor in your branding

His beef with banana pudding

You can check A Dozen Cousins out at Instagram: @adozencousins or

Minute markers for your skimming pleasure (how dare you):
6:58 Spiller Qs
10:03 Branding Qs


This week we’re dropping a new and fun episode series called “Bcc”. And nope, not blind carbon copy, but ‘business casual conversations.’ These episodes take our guests off the thread so founders Allie and Lyndsay can have unfiltered, 1:1 chats to impart branding insights, experiment with new ideas, and pull back the curtain on creative entrepreneurism.

As you’ll notice, we did not have a finalized name for this series when we recorded this episode, so you get to bear witness to an informal brainstorm as we toss around potential ideas for these founder-on-founder episodes. Today’s topic is about the deeply accessible, seemingly-simple medium that is sweeping the nation: podcasting.

We take you through the strategic podcast assessment that we developed years ago using Obedient formulas and data from running our popular podcast, Fangasm. This framework is what we used to develop Brandsplaining into the bright and shining show it is today, and we go over helpful ways to evaluate if your podcast concept has legs and longevity. From content aggregation to niche to format to expertise to audience, we’ll go through the 8 harsh questions you should ask yourself in order to get ahead of critical aspects of creating and running a show that way too many people overlook.

And, of course, this episode has games—Improvised Podcast Sponsor and Mom Jokes—plus an opening ‘true branding mystery’ we attempt to solve.

So whether you are in pre-production on a podcast, or you have one up and running, we highly suggest taking your show through this evaluation and see if you can’t add in more delight and differentiation so that all of your hard work results in something valuable for your listeners, and enjoyable for you.

All aboard the ‘splain train!

Link to Medium article ‘Is Your Podcast Idea Any Good? 8 Harsh Questions To Ask Yourself’


This episode is a panty dropper. Oh man we are already sorry for writing that line BUT we promise it sorta makes sense given that today’s episode is all about underwear. And even wilder: recycled underwear. Keep your pants on while we explain: this week we spoke with Eleanor Turner, the founder and CEO of The Big Favorite, which is a company making super soft and circular understuffs (their brilliantly coined term for undershirts and underwear) for men and women. They are an innovative, thoughtful, and offbeat brand with an incredible mission to put a dent in the 11 million pounds of understuffs that go into landfills and incinerators every day. EVERY DAY, YOU GUYS. To use their great slogan: The Big Favorite goes places, just not in the trash.

The Big Favorite is new to market but already making a big splash—being worn by the likes of Nicole Richie and featured in Vogue and Marie Claire among others. Eleanor herself is a heavy hitter in the fashion design world, with iconic American brands including Tommy Hilfiger, Tory Burch, and J.Crew on her resume. She also co-founded the direct-to-consumer company, Argent, where she innovated workwear with four patents pending and dressed trailblazing women like Hillary Clinton, Kamala Harris, Glossier’s Emily Weiss, and actress, Awkwafina, among others.

We got to hear about how The Big Favorite was formerly a cotton workwear brand led by her great grandfather in the 30s and how she revived it using a lot of the original heart and story and adding in quirkiness, fun, humor, and intention.

Beyond the amazing backstory and mission, we gabbed about:

How undergarments are the one apparel category you can’t donate or resell. And how The Big Favorite is changing that with their zero-waste, plastic-free, circular, understuffs.

The genius process of how TBF is recycling their own textiles

How Eleanor created a Brand Personality and tone of voice for TBF that deviates from the sustainable fashion industry status quo and how that has impacted everyone from the models on her photoshoots to consumers.

The eventual plan for these products to be carried at corner stores so that good quality can meet convenience.

The creative strategy for people to experience joy when they interact with the brand.

The importance and payoff of taking risks with your branding.

Not shying away from the funny/weird sides of your business

Eleanor’s mission to conquer textile waste, get her hands dirty cleaning up the planet…and have a blast doing it.

Her time as the Co-Founder and Chief Creative Officer at Argent

We also play a rousing game of Mascot Who? and riff on slogans that would convince party-going teens to ‘responsibly rage’ and recycle their beer cans. We know you’ll laugh and learn as much as we did, and for more from The Big Favorite you can check them out at (there is a Thong Song/Sisqo joke waiting for you on the homepage. bless), on Facebook and Instagram @thebigfavorite on Twitter @the_bigfavorite and on Reddit at u/greatgrandaddyturner


Do You Hear What I Hear? Some Jingle Bell-y laughs and minds being (snow)blown. That’s right, It’s Beginning To Look A Lot Like Great Branding and in this episode Allie and Lyndsay brandsplain all of the strategies and tactics that make the holiday branding so compelling…and how you can incorporate them into your business year-round. Gather round the fire as they break down the two pillars of holiday branding—spectacle and story—and share magical background stories to classic campaigns (did you know Rudolph was created by a department store?!), insights into how this season taps into consumer emotion in order to convert, and personal anecdotes from their upbringing that prove that fun is an unmatched tool for creativity and differentiation. Like taking a bite out of a Christmas Tree shaped Reese’s, this episode will leave you happy, hopeful, and ready to take your business from Scrooge to Santa—all year long

Bonus topics: Taylor Swift’s new album, Evermore, the 1990 classic animated film, Rover Dangerfield, rebranding Saint Nicholas to Jolly Old Saint Nick, satirical holiday gift guides, Andre 3000’s vacuum, the power of a brand mascot, and of course, the namesake of the episode title: Obedient’s fictional head intern, Gary.


You’re nuts if you think we’d do an episode about branding nut milk and not make that joke. This week is all about joy and JOI and we had a lovely conversation with Mike O’Hagan, the chief strategy officer of JOI, who also happens to be a buddy of ours after working together to launch their first site in 2019.

JOI (which stands for just one ingredient) is a concentrate made from whole, natural ingredients that, when blended with water, create nutritious, plant-based milks. It’s the first of its kind, creating an entirely new category in the food industry and absolutely crushing it—flying off the shelves, being carried at Amazon and Thrive Market, and receiving glowing reviews from bigwigs like Bon Appetit and The Food Network.

Mike, a plant-based eater for over 23 years, has over 16 years of marketing and advertising experience and we got to gabbing all about the Brand Personality of JOI (that Obedient created), the consumer response to the playful and envelope-pushing tone, how humor kicks shame out of the health food conversation, strategies for flexing in varying brand voices depending on platform, and how helpful a fun approach is in helping a new brand get attention.

Bonus: we haze him into rehashing a line of copy we wrote for them that ended up on the cutting room floor and we still maintain its brilliance.

Your brain glass will be more than half full after listening and we know that only barely makes sense. Just trust us. If you want more JOI in your life, you can check them out at, and @addjoi across social media.


Ready for some un*match*ed entrepreneurial insights that will help you light your industry on fire and blow away the competition? Perfect, because this week’s episode is wick-ed good. We spoke with Ida-Sofia Koivuniemi, the founder of Evil Queen—a candle company committed to bringing light and attitude into homes around the world. Basically, they’re making candles fun again.

Regularly selling out online and featured on Buzzfeed, Cosmo, and PopSugar, you‘re not gonna find ‘fresh linen’ or ‘pumpkin harvest’ in Evil Queen’s collections. Instead? Amazing scents with names like “Champagne Showers,” “Stolen Hoodie,” and “Wash Your Fucking Hands.” These candles are funny, memorable gifts for any occasion or the perfect home good to bring a smile to your face during a shitty week. Trust us, Evil Queen candles are the one candle you’d never regift.

We talked with Ida-Sofia about a lot of really interesting things about creativity, entrepreneurism, and branding including:

Using bold branding to create niches in what seem to be saturated marketplaces

How to use make the mundane memorable

How to stay in your lane creatively even if copycat brands start to pop up

The power of humor to elicit relatability and inclusiveness

Inviting others to be in on the joke

Risk-taking and the benefit of being willing to say things that others won’t

How surprise and delight lead to memorability and new customer acquisition

Ways to resist branding mimicking and instead trusting your unique POV

Burning down industry norms and writing your own rules

It’s a great chat and a great time (and we play a rousing game of Mascot Who? as well). For more from Evil Queen, you can head to or on Instagram @evilqueen.


There’s not a more appropriate way to end 2020 than with an episode all about staying in. We chatted with Tyler Calder, the Director of Content for Girls’ Night In—a community and weekly newsletter exploring the ways we unwind, take care, and make friends into adulthood. Girls’ Night In also just launched The Lounge: a new membership platform for connecting IRL and online, and Whiled: goods designed for downtime. (And P.S. Whiled’s tagline is so good it makes us howl like wolves: “Press pause and play.) We’ve admired the entire brand suite because of their fun, candid messaging and their use of levity to open dialogue and foster community.

We had a riot talking with Tyler (who herself is the queen of cozy) about the Girls’ Night In ethos and brand strategy and got into a lot of fun topics, like:

Using candor and clarity to draw in the right audience

Having a distinct brand personality in order to foster strong partnerships and collabs

Resisting the urge to put out clickbait or frivolous content even if it feels the most marketable

Not being afraid of having a counter-cultural message, because it can often help you carve a niche and find your people

How a thoughtful, integral brand approach will pay off in the long haul in terms of consumer loyalty

And we ended talking about snack necklaces (on Instagram @wearyoursnacks, by the way). You can check out everything GNI is up to @girlsnightinclub,, or @jointhelounge on Instagram or at

‘Splain ya later

It’s our party and we’ll…end it when we want to. That’s right, we’re bringing Season 1 of Brandsplaining to a close in order to explore other show concepts for the upcoming NEW season. Hear what we’ve got in store and why it’s the most athletic thing we’ve done yet. A very special thanks to all of our incredible guests from this season—we had so much fun ‘splaining branding with you all. Season 2 drops soon, so stay tuned.

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