Wake up every day and know that anything is possible if you set your mind to it.
Brandin Cohen grew up in Manhattan Beach, California, where he aspired to become a professional golf player, eventually playing the sport on scholarship at Loyola Marymount University. When Brandin hurt his shoulder in college, he had no idea the injury would close one door and open another: a career as an innovative entrepreneur with a philanthropic mission.
After graduating Loyola Marymount University as Entrepreneur of the Year for a project he did in Haiti, Brandin accepted a sales & marketing position with the Arizona Diamondbacks of Major League Baseball. He quickly noticed the players were opting for ineffective sports drinks to fight dehydration. As a former athlete himself, Brandin knew just how full of artificial colors, flavors, sweeteners, and preservatives these drinks contain. He set out to find a cleaner, more efficient alternative that would help people live better lives around the world.
In 2012, he began learning the science of Oral Rehydration Therapy, developed in the 1970’s by the World Health Organization and deemed to be one of the best medical advancements of the 20th century. This hydration breakthrough was created to aid children in developing countries suffering from extreme dehydration caused by deadly diseases such as cholera. Brandin searched for any beverage utilizing this technology but was left empty handed. He decided to bring this untapped science to market and create Liquid I.V. The company officially launched in December 2012.
Aside from creating a great hydration product, Brandin also has a passion for giving back. In 2015, Liquid I.V. began sending hydration aid to some of the poorest regions of Haiti. The brand has since joined forces with multiple nonprofit organizations to fight dehydration together in other undeveloped nations like Uganda, South Sudan, Puerto Rico, and many more. Since the company’s inception, they have donated 34% of all manufactured Liquid I.V. product to fight dehydration both in developing countries and here in the United States. In 2018 alone, the company will donate over 300,000 servings of Liquid I.V. Hydration Multiplier to those who need it most around the world.
Brandin was recently nominated as a finalist for Forbes’ 30 Under 30 Social Entrepreneur List. He currently resides in Playa Vista, California, and when he is not on the road meeting with retailers, he loves to travel the world and meet new people of varying cultures on his mission to defeat global dehydration.
Where did the idea for Liquid IV come from?
It all started with my love of sports and passion for health and wellness. I was fortunate enough to receive a golf scholarship at Loyola Marymount University. My plan to play professionally was halted during senior year by a shoulder injury, so I went to the dean of the school of business pleading to join the entrepreneurship program, and despite my lack of prerequisites, he gave me a shot. I ended up winning the “Entrepreneur of the Year” that year, sending over 20,000 meals to the children of Haiti, following the devastating earthquake in 2010. This was an incredible and humbling experience that later became a big inspiration to me in my current business.
After graduating, I began working with the Arizona Diamondbacks in sales and marketing and discovered that all the players on the team were consuming unhealthy, chemically-filled baby hydration drinks and I thought, “Why are all the best athletes in the world drinking this crap?” After moving back to LA, I discovered all my young professional friends were also drinking similar hydration solutions for their active, fast-paced lifestyles.
There was clearly a void in the market for a truly effective, healthy hydration product for active adults and I wanted to fix that problem so people could live better lives. Partnering with world-renowned scientists, we developed a revolutionary science called Cellular Transport Technology, which allows people to hydrate 2-3x faster and more efficiently than water alone!
We got into one local Whole Foods and within 3 months, became the top-selling item in the Whole Body department. Because of the excitement around the product, Whole Foods quickly expanded us into 12 stores… and before we knew it, everyone wanted LIV! We were voted “Best New Product of 2016” by all the top retailers in the world and all of the sudden (seemingly) we were carried in over 20,000 stores across the country! Now we are able to help people around the world struggling with dehydration… I couldn’t be more proud of our team and our mission to defeat dehydration globally!
What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?
I start my day at 5:30am. When I wake up, I take the first 30 minutes to get emails out to get some momentum rolling for our internal team and outside partners. This frees me up to spend a little time on myself… so I follow the emails with 15 minutes of meditation, which sets a productive and grateful tone for my day. After meditation, I hit the gym for an hour and this routine allows me to come into the office with a clear mind. When I’m not on the road traveling, my day at Liquid I.V. HQ starts at 9am and every day is filled with meetings and calls (internal team, external partners, investors, retailers, etc) with the sole focus of changing the world. My day at the office normally ends around 7 or 8pm. I love making calls to my family and friends on my commute home to catch up on my personal relationships. When I get home, I cook dinner, spend 30 more minutes on email, plan the next day, then sign off with 15 minutes of meditation. It’s a good day if I’m asleep by 11!
How do you bring ideas to life?
I’m all about whiteboard and collaborative visioning meetings. Drawing out my ideas on a whiteboard helps to visualize and talk through strategy and execution. It’s when I think at my best!
What’s one trend that excites you?
The continuing focus of social good in corporate America. The priority of giving back and uniting people at scale is so powerful. Another trend that I’m excited to see is driverless cars and how they will affect major cities.
What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?
Meditation… twice a day. Setting intentions helps me stay centered and focused during stressful, challenging moments.
What advice would you give your younger self?
Although having an extreme personality is useful in accomplishing goals, balance is necessary too.
Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.
Bracelets (with a purpose) are cool for guys!
As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?
Wake up every day and know that anything is possible if you set your mind to it.
What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business?
The model of test to scale. Test small, take the learnings, scale your growth areas, and repeat. Most of our business plans are built off this model and it’s a strategy that’s used by the Liquid I.V. team.
What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?
I truly don’t see things as failures. I see them as learning experiences to get better… and they’re have been many!
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
Wider sidewalks because walking in a group of 3 is annoying. Someone is always in the street, out ahead or straggling behind. Whoever makes millions with this idea, give me a shout out!
What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?
I bought healing crystals for my 96 year-old grandma, who has a lot of health issues. She is an amazing woman and is positive that these crystals give her energy.
What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive? How do you use it?
I am constantly reprioritizing my most important tasks throughout the day. The notes app is a simple solution that is so valuable in my everyday efficiency. I can easily access my personal and business to-do lists both on my phone and computer, at any point in time. It has become a key part of my daily routine! It’s not the most complex technology but it’s incredibly useful for me!
What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?
“The Leader in You” by Dale Carnegie. I share this book with our team and is one I would recommend to anyone. I have read this book numerous times and I’m always finding new messages that help me to become a better leader.
What is your favorite quote?
“The people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world are the ones who do.”
- Everything happens for a reason
- Being grateful for everything you have is an amazing place to do business from
- You’ll hear a lot of “no’s” on the road to success… don’t let them stop you; stay true to what’s most important to you and always follow your passion
- Set realistic and achievable goals; hold yourself accountable
- Surround yourself with the best people