Kathleen Ruiz’s Experiential Approach to Entrepreneurship

A dissatisfaction with retail experiences is what lead Kathleen Ruiz to start her own agency.

Kathleen Ruiz_KRW Consulting

Many of the most successful businesses were built on a simple pain point and started with an entrepreneur who realized they have the potential to fill an essential gap in the market.

KRW Consulting is the brainchild of Kathleen Ruiz, an entrepreneur who was fed up with lackluster retail experiences and decided she wanted to turn things around for both brands and consumers.

We caught up with Kathleen to find out more about her business journey to date.

What did you eat for breakfast? 

Mango yogurt with raspberries.

What’s your workout? 

I love cardio. It’s good for the heart and a great stress release.  Elliptical and walking are my favorite. I try to walk in the city whenever I can, especially on a beautiful day!

Tell us about your work.

KRW Consulting is a full service marketing agency specializing in strategic brand partnerships and experiential marketing, particularly in the fashion and retail space.

What inspired you to start your business? 

As a long-time retail executive and customer, I became tired of in-store shopping trips and lackluster retail experiences- even those with my preferred brands- because I was always left desiring more.

I felt that brands were missing out on the opportunity to capitalize on an experiential element, causing a customer disconnect. I built my agency around this idea of creating a curated collection of moments, including both physical and digital, that matter.

This, combined with the fact that many companies don’t have internal dedicated partnership teams, prompted me to start an agency.

Where did you start and where are you now? 

I started KRW Consulting with a dream and one employee!  My first year in business was steady with clients allowing me to hire additional staff to support the workload.  We turn two this summer and my team continues to grow.  We are now a team of 7 which allows me to take on more projects.

What do you see for your future?

It’s always my goal to continue to grow and work with unique and interesting brands.  We are a boutique agency by design. I have a small, internal core team with decades of experience plus an army of industry experts in the wings that I work with depending on the project and client.  This allows KRW to stay nimble while competing with major agencies with hundreds on staff.  Long term, I plan to continue to build my external network of experts to create a powerful collective and deliver meaningful results to my clients.

What gets in your way? 

People who say “I can’t”! 

What’s the one thing you’d like other female founders to know about overcoming that?

Believe you can and you will.  A positive attitude and determination can help you overcome all.  I always teach my team to look at barriers as opportunities.

What’s your favorite tech tool today–a must-have app, platform or software that helps you run the firm?

G Suite is something we use daily, particularly the chat feature as my team can be spread out at times, so it keeps us connected.  LinkedIn is a favorite tool as I am always looking for business opportunities and keeping up with updates in the industry. Pinterest I love for inspiration!

What would you say is your “entrepreneurial superpower?”

 My gut. It never fails me, I have always had a keen sense about people and business.

Who is the entrepreneur you admire most right now and why?

Gwyneth Paltrow   Not only did she reinvented herself from starlet actress to lifestyle guru, but she created one of the most influential modern lifestyle brands today. And she did it with little to no experience in building a brand.  She knew she wanted to share her passion with the world and she found a way to do it through hard work and dedication.

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