EXPERTS IN PRODUCT SAMPLING
CoOptions’ Sampling Store™ offers a broad portfolio of product sampling options, from turnkey themed co-ops with major retail partners to custom targeted campaigns at #1 lifestyle touchpoints. We also offer end-to-end services including sample overwrapping and tip-on, fulfillment, and depth consumer/shopper research (including longitudinal conversion studies).
Our leadership team is comprised of former CPG marketers from Kraft, P&G, Nestle, and major agencies, so we approach brand trial strategically and with the combined experience of those who have been in the sampling trenches on both brand and agency sides. The Sampling Store was founded in Stamford, CT, its headquarters moving to Cary in 2004, maintaining regional presence in the Northeast and other parts known.
Over the past two decades, we’ve delivered on trial and conversion objectives for hundreds of CPG companies, including Kraft, Mondelez, P&G, Pepsico, Nestlé, Unilever, Clorox, and Campbell’s; and many major retailers including Walmart, CVS, Walgreens, Publix, and Kroger.
BRIAN SCOTT SOCKIN
Brian brings more than 30 years of marketing and new product experience to the business from both client and agency sides. Prior to founding CoOptions and Sampling Store in 1994, Brian was a brand manager at Kraft Foods and co-founder / CEO of Colangelo Synergy, now an Omnicom agency.
Brian has his BA in Psychology (Binghamton University) and his MBA (Wharton). He is also an author of eleven published books, including The Pocket Marketer (Warner Books). His passions include tennis, sailing, motorcycling, hiking, writing, birding, and archery.
PRESIDENT, COOPTIONS HEALTH & WELLNESS
Prior to joining us, Darlene held positions at Kraft Foods in Marketing and New Product Development, and Sales at Procter & Gamble. Darlene brings special expertise to the firm in health and wellness marketing and promotions, managing our Yoga Studio Network™ and other health and wellness sampling channels.
Darlene is a Certified Yoga Instructor and highly engaged in local and national yoga communities. Darlene’s other passions include hiking, 5K races, yoga, nature photography, gardening and reading.
SVP BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT
Janet is an accomplished marketing professional who turns brand strategies into impactful plans, grounded in consumer insights and brand equity and benefits. Janet has held senior level management positions for both consumer packaged goods companies (Kraft Foods and Pepperidge Farm) and agencies (Octagon, CoOptions).
Janet holds her BA in English/Journalism (Binghamton University) and her MBA (St. John’s University). She is also a co-author of The Pocket Marketer (Warner Books).
SVP MARKETING & PUBLIC RELATIONS
Tania is a seasoned executive with 30+ years experience with Fortune 100/500 companies, most recently as Cigna’s Global Lead for Integrated Marketing & Strategy, responsible for B2B, consumer, and customer marketing. Tania also served in leadership at ConAgra Foods as Chief Corporate Spokesperson, Corporate Director of Product Promotion (frozen and refrigerated units), its company-wide Health & Wellness product portfolio, and NASCAR sponsorships. Tania has a BS in Organizational Communications and Journalism from Arizona State University. She is an avid tennis player.
SALES & ACCOUNT MANAGER
Brad Langer has been in the entertainment industry for more 30 years, working as a radio announcer on AM & FM stations in New York & Florida; puppeteering for Disney; working for Jim Henson (Muppets movies, TV specials, and special events such as Radio City’s Night of 100 Stars). A master of accents and dialects, Brad is also a book narrator and the worldwide voice for Forever Yours, International. Brad joined us in sales and to help manage entertainment-related programs.
BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT MANAGER
Caitlin Sockin is a programs editor, database developer, and outreach coordinator connecting one-on-one with sampling location contacts. She graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel-Hill with high honors, and is releasing her first book, Dig It! Archaeology for Kids in Spring 2023. As a group fitness instructor herself, she is especially passionate about sampling in health & fitness venues. Her hobbies include escape rooms, jigsaw puzzles, sudoku, hiking, and going to museums.