Welcome to Inspiring Brands Academy!
Hello! It's nice to (virtually) meet you. I'm Christina-Lauren Pollack, the Creator of Inspiring Brands Academy™. Because I've always loved to help women succeed, I'm excited to educate & empower female small business owners with digital branding strategies & inspiring ideas.
About my background
While I've been in business for over 20 years, I've been a digital entrepreneur, pro lifestyle blogger + social media influencer for over a decade. Here's a summary of my career managing small businesses, building global brands, and doing online marketing.
My first job was as a retail sales associate at Georgiou Studio (a women's apparel brand) on Ocean Avenue in Carmel-by-the-Sea, California.
During that time I also was a part-time Bay Area commercial print model and actress (and was represented by SF Top Talent Agency).
Starting in 2000, I handled the Communications, Marketing, and Public Relations for Dandy Productions (which is the creator and producer of a line of patriotic children's characters), which taught me the foundation of marketing, media relations, and graphic design.
Since 2003, I've managed the operations of Creative Balloons Mfg. Inc., (a worldwide producer of party supplies since 1973). The company is a long-term supplier to companies like McDonald's, Karl Lagerfeld, and other brands, and do both B2B and B2C sales via traditional and e-commerce business. In the past few years, I've led the company's online branding, social media marketing, and digital advertising strategies.
In 2007, I became the President of the Monterey County Young Professionals Group, which was a business networking organization. During my term, I helped to elevate the public image of the organization through event marketing, publicity strategies, and business development. By the end of my tenure on the Board, MCYPG had become a non-profit, had grown to 1000+ members, and was hosting popular monthly events.
In 2008, I was a Co-Founder & Angel Investor of WorldMusicLink™, a tech startup that built a music industry social network. Our platform connected thousands of music industry pros (record labels, producers, agents, etc.) with indie talent (singers, songwriters, musicians, etc.). Our Board was led by music industry leaders including the former Chairman & CEO of Sony Records, the former Editor-in-Chief of Billboard Magazine, a top music festival producer, and other executives.
In 2011, I launched my lifestyle blog Inspirations & Celebrations, (which later turned into a part-time business). Through my blog, I've collaborated with brands like The Ritz-Carlton and Four Seasons and have had 300+ sponsored campaigns with clients like Ulta Beauty, Unilever, Olay, Dove, and more. I've been seated front row at New York Fashion Week, featured on InStyle.com, Shape.com, and other publications, and have been dressed by designers like Badgley Mischka and Cynthia Rowley. Between my blog and my social channels, I currently reach 300k+ followers and subscribers, including celebrities, industry leaders (in fashion, beauty, and other lifestyle niches), and the editors of top magazines.
I've been featured in books like Fast Track Networking: Turning Conversations into Contacts and 99 Things Women Wish They Knew Before Getting Behind the Wheel of their Dream Job. I've been featured in magazines, appeared on television, and quoted in top industry publications.
In addition to my blog, for over 5 years, I was a regular contributing writer for Carmel Magazine, Shakers Magazine, The Los Angeles Fashion Magazine, SeeMonterey.com, and The Huffington Post. As an eHow.com Style Presenter, I hosted and co-produced a 10-part "style how-to" video series.
In 2020, after watching so many small businesses face unprecedented challenges, I felt inspired to help by becoming an online educator for female small business owners. As I'm passionate about helping women succeed, the mission of Inspiring Brands Academy™ is to provide digital branding solutions, social media marketing & advertising strategies, and inspiring ideas that help you elevate your brand online.
I encourage you to sign-up below for the IBA e-newsletter below, as it provides branding tips, marketing strategies, and helpful advice.
I'm excited to join you on your digital journey toward success!
Words of praise from clients + partners
Michael W., Chairman & CEO, SYNQY (VC-backed Retail Media-Tech)
"Christina is one of the sharpest minds in marketing today. She performs at a level that most can't. She understands how the world really works today and is incredibly proactive and insightful. She brings a "make it happen" mindset that is unrivaled."
Tiffany R., President Influencer Management, SWAY Group
"Christina-Lauren is wonderful to work with. Not only does she deliver beautiful content, created according to client guidelines, but she is also on time and a true pro in the influencer space. What really makes Christina-Lauren stand out as one of our favorite influencers to work with is her engaged audience and ability to drive sales - in fact, on a recent campaign for a luxury item, she was our top performer."
Daniel H., Dir. of Public Relations, Four Seasons Resort The Biltmore
“We’ve been loving your posts! Thank you, Christina! It is a beautiful piece.”
Jonathan D., Store Manager for Cynthia Rowley
“Christina was amazing to work with. She is a hard-working visionary that is very fun to work with and she knows her stuff. From the very beginning, she was focused and had a timeline on when things needed to be completed to ensure we both could be present and available for what we worked so hard to plan. She is very experienced in her field and loves what she does and that is the best person to work with because the passion bleeds through everything she does. She is such an amazing person and a rare gem.“
Briitni K., Marketing Manager, Resort at Squaw Creek
“This is fabulous! Thank you so much for including all this information. The pictures are beautiful... I can’t wait to see the video.”
Sonja D., TCO Public Relations on behalf of Papyrus
“Thank you so much for the post on your May Giveaway! PAPYRUS is seeing tons and tons of posts tagging them. They are thrilled!!”
Sascha B., Acct. Mgr. for Popsugar Select on behalf of Jockey
“I just had a chance to review your video - it looks amazing!”
Trisha D., Ballantines PR on behalf of Portola Hotel & Spa
"Thank you so much for such a wonderful collaboration with Portola Hotel & Spa on this campaign. It was great exposure and response. Thank YOU!!"
Erin M., CollectiveBias on behalf of Jergens
“You did an outstanding job on your post for the Jergens Natural Glow campaign!”
Brittany S., Assoc. Marketing Mgr., Popsugar Select on behalf of Palm Breeze
"Thanks for publishing your great post. I very much enjoyed working with you on this program, and will be sure to keep you in mind for future opportunities.”
Lynzee J., Everywhere Agency, on behalf of Macy’s
“Your post looks AMAZING!!!”
Misty M., Public Relations, InterContinental Hotel The Clement Monterey
"Congratulations on a wonderful giveaway. Thanks again for all your hard work and I look forward to working with you again soon!"
Orlando O., Director of Marketing, Ministry of Supply
“The photos and post look fantastic. Really well done.”
Lauren B., Marketing Coordinator, Tahari ASL
“The post looks great! Thanks.”
Shara S., Senior Manager, Public Relations, HelloFresh US
“Thank you so much for this post! The photography is beautiful and I am so thrilled to hear you enjoyed your experience.”
Kathy C., Copy Chief, Condé Nast Media Group, on behalf of Nexxus
“We loved your feedback on the Nexxus system. Happy to confirm that your quote was featured in the Nexxus ad unit.”
J’Amy T., Fashion Designer, J’Amy Tarr Outerwear
“Thank you so much for your kind words and terrific photos!
Katie G., Dir. of Public Relations, Rinck Advertising for Secret Supper “What a fantastic write-up. You did such a wonderful job conveying the evening.”
O. Verkhotina, PR Coordinator, Augustine Agency for Downtown Napa
“I was literally just reading your post, it looks awesome! Thank you so much again for visiting, taking your time to explore and write about it.”
Libby S., Social Media Mgr., Mirum Agency for Albertson’s/Safeway
“Perfect, thank you Christina-Lauren! Everything live looks GREAT. We’re looking forward to another partnership together!”
Ellie H., Assoc. Producer, Collectively Inc., on behalf of Cupcake Vineyards
“Everything looks great, thanks so much for sharing!“
Lauren J., R. Couri Hay Creative PR for Elizabeth Sutton Collection
“The post is great and the photos look amazing. Thanks so much!”
Maseera S., Riviere Agency, on behalf of Fashion Palette
“Wow, this is amazing! Thank you so much, Christina!”
Kelsie B., Social Media for MPF for AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am
“This is awesome. Thanks so much.”
Line J., Affiliate Manager, The Hut Group, on behalf of Glossybox
“Loved your post and the engagement.“
Jojo U., Talent Manager, Il Makiage Cosmetics
“We LOVED your looks! You look amazing!”
Loryn B., Digital Marketing, Palm Bay Int’l, on behalf of Yealands Wine
“These photos are beautiful!”
Stella R., Director, Performics, on behalf of Kohl’s
“This is awesome, thank you! We will definitely keep you in mind for future campaigns. Thank you for all of your work on this project and your dedication to making it a success. We appreciate it!”
Stacy R., Owner, Peninsula Glow Medical Spa
"I highly recommend Christina for any branding and marketing expertise. On countless collaborations, she has helped both myself and my company stand out and make a name for ourselves in the community. Christina takes into consideration the importance of how you would like to represent your brand, adding the perfect amount of her creative expertise. As a start-up medical spa, this was exactly the outcome we were hoping for."
Maddy C., Owner, Physique Exercise Salon
"Christina's creativity and ideas aren't her only affinities. While collaborating on a fitness tutorial series, I was impressed by her knowledge of the ins and outs of marketing through social media. We were able to reach new audiences and guide them through her blog to my website and Instagram!"
Heidi S., Marketing & International Business Student
"Inspiring Brands Academy is an in-depth, effective toolbox for managing your brand. I consistently looked forward to learning the new content and speaking with Christina each week, as it always made me motivated and prepared to take action. A business idea combined with Inspiring Brands Academy is an unstoppable team!"