The Speed of Culture Podcast: Staying Ahead of Culture and Technology

Visa CMO Frank Cooper III on finding your own personal sense of purpose

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What does it take to excel in a multi-industry marketing career? To find out, we sat down with Frank Cooper III, chief marketing officer at Visa. With a wealth of experience spanning multiple industries, from developing financial literacy to finding your purpose, Cooper III is an expert in his field and has some invaluable advice to share on how to thrive in the fast-paced world of marketing.

In this episode of the Speed of Culture podcast, Suzy founder and CEO Matt Britton sits down with Cooper III to discuss his outstanding multi-industry marketing career, his passion for helping people develop a healthy relationship with money and how to find your sense of purpose by applying the concept of Ikigai in everything you do.

After receiving a Bachelor of Science degree in business administration from the University of California at Berkeley and Juris Doctor from Harvard Law School, Cooper III shifted his career toward marketing. He served in various industries for companies like Def Jam Recordings, Tommy Boy Music, AOL, PepsiCo, BuzzFeed and BlackRock.

In 2022, Cooper III took on the role of the CMO at Visa, where he leads the global marketing organization to drive demand for Visa products, services and solutions. He was also included in the 2022 Forbes World’s Most Influential CMOs List.

Discover more about how to build a meaningful and fulfilling career by checking out the key takeaways of this episode below.

Key Highlights:

  • 00:56 – 04:42 – From law to marketing – Cooper III has a B.S. in Business Administration from Berkley and a Juris Doctor degree from Harvard Law School. However, he decided to follow his passion for helping brands grow through stories, experience and relationships, and shifted into marketing, working in various industries from music to finance to large F&B brands.
  • 08:54 – 11:12 – Cooper III’s time at PepsiCo – At PepsiCo, Cooper III focused on leveraging culture as his primary marketing strategy. He believes culture is a way of informing target demographics, communicating with them and building relationships. That translates into how the company builds its product and markets to core targets.
  • 12:43 – 16:58 – Spreading financial literacy – Cooper III built his whole career around the idea of change, which inspired him to take on a senior role at BlackRock to help them amplify their brand. This move was also motivated by his desire to help people and communities develop their financial literacy and build a healthy relationship with money.
  • 23:17 – 25:08 – Social first – Winning at marketing in 2023 is about finding effective channels and strategies to get messages out to consumers that matter. For Visa, that means focusing on a meaningful social media strategy on LinkedIn and TikTok that adds value to the user experience. Secondly, the cultural aspects continue to play a significant role, which motivates Visa to expand its marketing efforts and involvement in sports, music and gaming.
  • 28:42 – 29:54 – The philosophy of Ikigai – Regardless of what career you pursue, start by understanding yourself. For Cooper III, it all comes down to the Japanese concept of Ikigai, which states if you want to find your personal sense of purpose, you need to know what you love, what you’re good at, how you can make a positive contribution to the world and what you can get paid for.