Paris-based Patrick Neyret recently sat down with Carlota Pico to discuss his role as Danone’s global director of Purposeful Brands and Marketing Transformation. Danone is a 25-billion-dollar company with a portfolio of over 100 brands consumed around the world, including essential dairy and plant-based goods, waters and specialized nutrition.

Patrick discussed the company’s vision, “One Planet. One Health,” and touched on its idea of “Entreprise à Mission”—the need to focus not only on shareholders, but also on other stakeholders. He also talked about the importance of a compelling brand purpose, plus why leadership, openness and empathy are fundamental aspects of success.

You can watch the full conversation in the video above or on YouTube, and listen to the podcast on Apple or Spotify.

Rapid-fire recs

  • Sources of inspiration:
    • The former CMO of Airbnb, Jonathan Mildenhall. “He represents what modern marketing should be—driving a sense of community, purpose and creativity.”
    • The Swiss designer Tina Roth Eisenberg, aka Swiss Miss. “She has a very interesting blog that’s a great source of inspiration. I love design and architecture, so this is how I keep my balance, not focusing only on work.”
  • Useful resources:
    • Adweek’s CMO Moves podcast by Nadine Dietz. “It’s super interesting. The quality and the caliber of the people that she’s been interviewing are great.”
    • Desert Island Discs from BBC Radio 4. “It’s an amazing set of interviews where people have to pick eight songs to represent their life, and the songs complement their trajectory really nicely.”
    • The book Eleven Rings by former NBA coach Phil Jackson. “I’m a huge sports fan. This book by the former Lakers and Bulls coach is great. He’s the most awarded coach in the NBA.”
  • Favorite app:
    • Mighty. “It’s an app that’s connected to a very small device, similar to an iPod Nano, that allows me to run without taking my phone with me—but still have my music and podcasts. It makes my life easier!”

I think having an authentic purpose, looking beyond just profit, and actually focusing on every type of stakeholder that your brand impacts is critical. That’s the seed for great marketing.

In marketing, a sense of curiosity is very, very important. There’s a lot to be learned in the day-to-day stuff, but also from what’s happening outside. I always try to get inspired by music, sports, design… things across the board can fuel creativity.

Connect with Patrick and Carlota on LinkedIn.

This post was edited by Mary Kresge, a marketing assistant based in Madrid.

For more insights into brand purpose, check out:

Create content with a purpose – Jack Dyson, global head of content strategy

Develop your brand personality – Aoife Noone, founder of Babushka Social

The building blocks of brand awareness – Moana Moo-Caille, EMEA brand marketing lead

To see the full transcript, click on page number 2 below.