June Program Recap: “The Journey of Flavor at Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams”

PRSA Richmond welcomed Beth Stallings, director of communications at Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams, on Thursday, June 29 for the June 2023 Luncheon event.

Jeni’s is a modern American ice cream company and one of the fastest-growing premium ice cream brands in the country. Founded in 2002 by James Beard Award-winning ice cream maker Jeni Britton, Jeni’s is known for its one-of-a-kind flavors, made with Direct and Fair Trade ingredients and super fresh milk from family dairy farms — and for its social, environmental, and business leadership.

As a community-spirited company, Jeni’s creates flavors with the power to bring people together. This year, Jeni’s opened its first scoop shop in Richmond at Carytown Exchange.

For the last seven years, Stallings has led the brand and product storytelling at Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams. Promoted to director of communications in 2022, Stallings now runs Jeni’s communications and public relations strategies. Before joining Jeni’s in 2016, she was an award-winning food journalist covering the emerging dining scenes in both Columbus and Cleveland, Ohio.

During her program, Stallings broke down the Jeni’s brand and discussed the journey the company goes through when adding and promoting new flavors. She touched on three key stages in their communications timeline when it comes to spreading the news about new offerings at Jeni’s:

  • The Kindling: Creating chatter and buzz about a new product, such as the recent Jeni’s x Ted Lasso collaboration. This involves partnerships with key media outlets, celebrities, influencers, and more.
  • The Spark: Making a formal announcement from Jeni’s anywhere between 2-4 weeks prior to a launch. This is an opportunity for interested fans to make ordering plans or plans to visit a shop in-person.
  • The Combustion: The flavor is made live and all systems are go. At this point, the brand is actively engaging with customers via media, PR, and social media channels.

Stallings’ favorite Jeni’s flavor tends to be whatever they’re collaborating on behind the scenes and getting ready to launch, but if you’re looking for something available now, she recommends the brown butter almond brittle.

Thanks to everyone who was able to join, and please stay tuned for details about our fall programs.