Vice president of marketing Adam Cooper has been involved in numerous major initiatives at Los Angeles-based The Wonderful Co., from the creation of its consumer insights group to the development of its popular Halos mandarin brand to the company’s transition from its previous identity as Paramount Citrus.
With a background heavy on strategy and market research, Cooper aims to have consumer behavior inform how the company looks to sell its produce, which also includes pistachios, pomegranate juice, almonds, pomegranates, lemons, limes and other citrus.
For example, when Wonderful asked people when they ate pistachios and discovered that football games were a major occasion for the nuts, the company designed a campaign around the NFL season, running TV commercials featuring NFL stars like Richard Sherman and Clay Matthews.
I like to inspire. I like to get involved when the team needs me involved. I like to let them do their thing when they need to do their thing and I try not to get in their way.
Wonderful Halos, Wonderful Pistachios and Pom Wonderful are the major produce brands of the company, and the vision for the future is moving more shoppers who regularly purchase one of those brands to add others to their list of staples.
Tying those products together was one of the reasons that company owner Lynda Resnick asked Cooper to lead the rebranding of the company as Wonderful. He said it was a project he was honored to take on.
“I was just really excited because it gave me the opportunity to talk to every corner of our business and see what we were doing in the fields, in the plants, in nurseries,” Cooper said.
“Obviously there’s a lot of emotions when you’re going to change your name. We had the name Paramount, which had been around for a long time, and we were very well recognized, especially in the Central Valley, and so it took us a while to really get comfortable with it, but I really learned first and foremost how to be a leader and how do we build excitement across the organization, and then figure out how do we best communicate this to our people that we care the most about, our partners.
“It was a really tough challenge and I was excited to sort of bring Lynda’s vision to life, and I think it’s been a great move for us,” Cooper said.
As the leader of a number of different initiatives across the various brands, Cooper looks to strike a balance between being hands-on and giving people latitude to work.
He’s really good for our company, but he’s really great for retailers and ultimately will be great for the industry as well.
“I like to inspire,” Cooper said. “I like to get involved when the team needs me involved. I like to let them do their thing when they need to do their thing and I try not to get in their way.
“I often ask them to put me to work ... and then I do whatever I can,” Cooper said.
Kurt Vetter, president of Wonderful Sales, describes Cooper as bright, passionate, intellectually curious and engaged. In addition to wanting to continually learn about what consumers are doing, Cooper also connects with retailers to hear their perspectives and bring ideas to them. Vetter noted Cooper also excels at internal communication.
“He works and collaborates not only with marketers but does a great job really communicating to our sales organization why we do elements the way we do from a marketing standpoint,” Vetter said. “He’s also been involved in industry marketing groups.
“He’s really good for our company, but he’s really great for retailers and ultimately will be great for the industry as well,” Vetter said.