On a Roll: Anne Engel

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Anne Engel, 37, was a marketing manager at Pepsi-Cola Co. for 10 years, overseeing brands including AllSport, Mountain Dew and the Pepsi-Starbucks joint venture. In May 1999, she was recruited by Creative Alliance Marketing & Communications, Westport, Conn., as VP-client services. Clients now include Butoni Pasta, CNBC.com, Todhunter International's Cruzan rum, and Pepsi brands Pepsi One and FruitWorks.

Insight: I never thought I'd leave the client side, but it has been extremely energizing to get into the agency business. At a big company like Pepsi you spend a lot of time doing internal selling of ideas. On the agency side, it's pure, hands-on creativity and brainstorming, not just managing ideas.

Edge: Our roots in graphic design and premium sourcing. That expertise lets us take promotions to a very grassroots level, often using guerrilla and event marketing with memorable giveaways.

Opinion: Successful promotions are all about catching consumers at the right place, in the right mood, and making people want to be part of something irresistible.

Speed bump: The demise of some of our most fun clients recently, including Pets.com and Gazoontite.com. Fortunately, we were not overly dependent on dot-com clients.

Tip: Don't underestimate the power of word of mouth in marketing. The goal of all promotions should be making products go viral.

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