Meet North America’s Smirnoff Brand Manager, Alicia Garcia
Hear from Alicia as she discusses innovating some of our most iconic brands and the re-launch of Smirnoff Red White and Berry.
Feature 15 JUN 2021
Alicia joined Diageo initially working in Human Resources and has since moved into marketing. Today she is the Brand Manager for Smirnoff in North America and is here to share her career story so far.
Tell us about your Diageo journey.
I joined Diageo seven years ago as a recent college graduate with dreams to make big things happen. I started off in Human Resources, but after three years I decided to move cross-functionally into marketing. I’ve been lucky enough to work on some of Diageo North America’s top brands like Crown Royal Canadian whisky and Don Julio tequila and this year I joined the Smirnoff vodka brand team as the Brand Manager. We are a small but mighty team and one thing I have always loved about working at Diageo is the freedom to succeed and the ability to learn and develop daily.
Tell us more about your current role as Smirnoff Brand Manager?
As the Brand Manager on Smirnoff, I cover a handful of key priorities. In addition to launching innovations, I have also been working on creating an LGBTQ+ strategy that is ever lasting for Smirnoff, leading our experiential platform and supporting our PR and culture plans. I have found that collaboration is key and working together with other teams internally is so rewarding as I know we are making an impact on this iconic brand.
Smirnoff Red White and Berry has been re-launched this summer – What has this involved?
Smirnoff Red White and Berry has been around for five years now but it’s still such a huge success. We knew we had to do something big this year to really bring it back with a bang. This has taken collaboration with agency partners and even a production with Anthony Anderson – American actor, comedian and game show host – to ensure we keep improving.
Innovations are all about staying ahead of trends, we need to grow personally to ask the right questions, do the right research, and tap into the right consumer insight. We also need to ensure we are building something sustainable and enhancing the equity of a brand by staying true to its purpose long-term.
The most exciting aspect of re-launching is we know we are bringing back a product people love, that’s why Red White and Berry comes back year after year. The real challenge is how to keep the ideas fresh and exciting and to keep the brand growing.