Expert Marketer Magazine


United States


Red Thread Thinking

Debra Kaye

Debra Kaye is an international innovation expert specializing in culture and marketing strategy for consumer brands, defining new areas of business opportunity, developing new products, and restructuring markets for long-term growth. She encourages her clients to become change-makers, and has helped set agendas for companies such as L'Oreal, Mars Petcare, American Express, Dove Chocolate, Groupe Danone, McDonald's, Absolut Vodka, Kimberly Clark, Banco Santander, Johnson & Johnson, Colgate, Clairol, Reckitt Benckiser, and Sony. Her book Red Thread Thinking: Weaving Together Connections that Lead to Brilliant Ideas and Profitable Innovation - one of the only books on innovation ever written by a woman - will be published March 1, 2013, by McGraw-Hill.

BDDP/Mancebo•Kaye, the marketing company she founded in Spain, became #1 in the country for strategic thinking and #3 for creativity in under three years, according to Ballester research. It's the kind of success that comes from inspiring people to be great thinkers and creating a culture of solving critical business issues. Debra was also a frequent, featured marketing and communications writer for top Spanish business publications, appearing prominently in five books about marketing and named Female Entrepreneur of the Year by Spain's Tribuna Económica.

As CEO of TBWAItaly, she was named the country's top marketer, and oversaw the business for clients such as Wind (mobile phones), Apple, Group Pernod Ricard, Bieirsdorf, and Nissan. In the U.S., she introduced her own skin care line, which was distributed nationwide in Nordstrom, Sephora, and in Saks Fifth Avenue New York. Three-months into distribution, Iconoculture named it the best-positioned cosmeceutical on the market.

Today, she is partner at innovation consultancy Lucule. A frequent commentator on American Public Radio's "Marketplace" and contributor to Fast Company, she is a sought-after speaker and has been featured at such venues as South by Southwest, among other engagements. She is also a board member of Count Me In, an organization dedicated to helping women-owned businesses grow and prosper. Debra lives in New York City.

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