A Creative Brand Builder Who Never Stops: Meet Michelle Spinale

Michelle Spinale, Director of Brand & Product Marketing at Assured Allies, impresses with her kindness, intelligence, and a magic ability to bring order gradually and systematically out of creative chaos. She sat down with me recently for a glass of wine over Zoom to talk about her role leading the marketing for an exciting new product launching in 2022 with the potential to change the aging trajectory.

Why did you choose to join Assured Allies?

I am inspired by  the company’s mission — to make successful aging accessible and achievable for everyone. Every day, 10,000 people in the U.S. turn 65. By 2030, this growing population will reach 73 million, representing one in five people, an enormous untapped market with unique needs and desires. There’s overwhelming momentum to celebrate, rather than defy, the number of birthday cake candles. I want to be part of it. 

What is your role?

I was hired to lead the brand and product marketing for Assured Allies’ soon-to-be launched  B2C wellness program, offered with long-term care and other financial products sold by leading insurance carriers. It leverages data, AI algorithms, technology, and our proprietary science-based approach to predict and positively shift the aging trajectory, reduce the risk of age-related decline, and help adults 55+ age successfully. We haven’t announced the name yet, but I’m excited for the big unveil when the product launches later in 2022. 

What would you say is unique about what Assured Allies is doing? 

The Insurtech and Agetech space is rapidly evolving. Covid-19 has only accelerated the growth of technology-driven solutions to improve the health, quality of life, and well-being of the 55+ market segment, who are more active, tech-savvy, and wealthier than any other generation before them.

Assured Allies is unique in how it builds a bridge between financial resources and health outcomes. Our wellness program will be sold as an integral part of financial products offered in partnership with leading insurance companies. Members will be incentivized to earn additional long-term care coverage over time by participating in the program. 

You’re currently hiring for a Lifecycle Marketing Manager. What are you looking for, and how do you look forward to working with this person?

It’s an exciting time to join and help build the customer journey and experience. We will motivate members to take a proactive role in their health with customized tools, a personalized plan, and a health coach to help them navigate the best successful aging path forward. I’m looking for a collaborative, self-motivated person with a combination of strategy, execution skills, and a passion for analytics and data-driven marketing. The Lifecycle Marketing Manager will manage our multi-channel communication strategy, including audience segmentation, messaging, creative design, and copywriting. We will work very closely together on goal setting, engagement tactics, and KPI’s. 

It’s really a fantastic opportunity for someone who has some digital marketing experience and wants to grow, learn and get exposure (one of the benefits of startups) to a multi-disciplinary team of experts. I’m inspired by my colleagues on a daily basis. The Assured Allies’ culture is steeped in collaboration, innovation, and transparency. Good ideas bubble up anywhere and are listened to. The company is growing quickly, and there is excellent upward mobility.

What do you find most rewarding and most challenging in your work?

The stakes are high. Disrupting a traditional industry and tackling one of society’s most significant emerging opportunities and changing the aging trajectory, takes a global team of superheroes. There is no roadmap. We are building something that does not yet exist. Each day requires a bit of grit, fortitude, agility, and humor as we forge ahead with our eyes on the big prize. 

What do most people misunderstand about marketing? 

That is hard for me to answer. Maybe that people sometimes assume marketing is like lipstick, something cosmetic added to a product in the final stages to make it sell. But marketing is much deeper than that. It’s the brand’s heart and soul — the consumer/customer voice — the creative story that connects products with audiences — and the engine that inspires cross-functional collaboration, innovation, and business growth. 

How do you balance work vs. life? 

Since Covid, the two blend more than ever. Working from home has inspired new self-care strategies. I savor my morning coffee instead of grabbing a cup on the run. I also schedule my Peloton workouts and evening chats with friends from coast to coast, which makes me feel both grounded and connected. 

Having a dog that decides when it’s time to take a break and play helps too. Charli, my feisty 4-year Cavachon, likes to Zoom-bomb meetings. When I need an inspiration break to reframe my thinking, I’ll watch a motivational TedX talk. And, I’m planning several summer weekend escapes to great New England destinations like Martha’s Vineyard, the Berkshires, and Kennebunkport, ME.

Michelle and Katharine unwind after a day of remote work with an occasional Happy Hour.

Katharine de Baun
Katharine has managed online content since 1994, when she founded one of the first parenting communities online. She is passionate about continually learning and promoting Successful Aging in her job as content manager at Assured Allies.