2 Minutes With … Shray Joshi, Founder and CEO of Good Peeps

On understanding what grabs attention and translating that into eyeballs

Shray established Good Peeps in 2022, where he serves as CEO. Earlier, he led marketing and growth at companies such as Health-Ade Kombucha, Cha Cha Matcha and SIMULATE.

A first generation Indian-American biochemist turned marketer, Shray's story began as a struggle with obesity, which sparked his passion for nutritional science to understand the relationship between food and health. He also works to elevate the Asian American Pacific Islander community, participating as a youth leader and showing kids of color that they can aspire to leadership positions in marketing, design and nutrition. 

We spent two minutes with Shray to learn more about his background, his creative inspirations and recent work he's admired.

Shray, tell us …

Where you grew up, and where you live now.

I grew up in San Diego, then spent some years at university in Boston. Early in my career, I was in NYC before moving to L.A. during the pandemic, where I have been ever since.

How you first realized you were creative.

Not until after university. I always had an obsessive personality but was largely a math and science nerd. Then, I started my first job as a marketing manager at a shop in NYC called Cha Cha Matcha. The founders introduced me to the world of design, fashion and branding—and from then on I was hooked. 

A person you idolized creatively early on.

I always saw great business owners as the ultimate creatives. They didn't make art for the sake of art. They created their companies with the intention of having a material impact. In my opinion, this was executed perfectly by Howard Schultz, the former CEO of Starbucks. In my eyes, he pioneered the "affordable luxury" category. Everyone has tried to turn commodity items into brands as a result of what he was able to build. 

A moment from high school or college that changed your life.

My biochemistry professor told me that being a psychology major was a dumb choice. I blindly trusted him, changed my majors to both biochem and nutrition and ended up losing 100 pounds as a result of that.

A visual artist or band/musician you admire.

Post Malone. He talks about the creative process in the most digestible way possible. Make stuff you like. Other people will end up liking it, too.

A book, movie, TV show or podcast you recently found inspiring.

Steal Like an Artist: 10 Things Nobody Told You About Being Creative. I recommend this book to everyone. It teaches you that when you start anything new, the fastest way to learn is by copying those who are already doing it well. You can then put your own twist on it and create something unique, which at that point is considered "art." 

Your favorite fictional character.

Harry Potter. There's a reason that series is the bestselling text in the world outside of the Bible.

Someone or something worth following in social media.

Chris Williamson. His short-form content fuels me when I am having Sunday scaries. 

One of your favorite creative projects you've ever worked on. 

The Health-Ade rebrand. I got to work with a bunch of talented people to help Health-Ade evolve from its old medicinal packaging to something more bright and bubbly. 

Someone else's work that inspired you years ago.

This speech Steve Jobs gave about marketing

Someone else's work you admired lately.

The launch of Feastables by MrBeast. They changed the CPG space in terms of how retailers, investors and founders think about influencer marketing. Influencers are the new celebrities. People are more likely to buy something that was created by a YouTuber they follow than some random celebrity who's launching the 85th tequila brand of the year. 

Your main strength as a creative person.

Understanding what gets attention. Oftentimes, people will create but not know how to get distribution or eyeballs on what they make. I know what gets attention and then I figure out how to tell my story to make sure it reaches the masses. 

Your biggest weakness.

Tunnel vision. It sometimes blocks me from taking in other perspectives. 

What you'd be doing if you weren't in advertising.

Probably formulating ideas.

2 Minutes With is our regular interview series where we chat with creatives about their backgrounds, creative inspirations, work they admire and more. For more about 2 Minutes With, or to be considered for the series, please get in touch.

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