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BW marketing grad posts for millions, starts two businesses

From success posting for Bath & Body Works to starting her own businesses, Lexi Ripperger '20 is making her mark as a digital entrepreneur and creator.

Lexi Ripperger '20

Lexi Ripperger '20 graduated from Baldwin Wallace University with a bachelor's degree in marketing and a minor in entrepreneurship. She has built up quite the resume since, posting for 27 million viewers on the Bath & Body Works TikTok account and starting her own businesses.

The Cincinnati native's entrepreneurial spirit started to grow in her senior year at BW when she co-founded a digital content creation company with two partners.

"As one of three partners, I learned a lot about owner's equity, the importance of shared long-term goals with said partners, and to believe your professors when they tell you to always have an exit strategy," shares Ripperger.

With differing visions, she ultimately left that company and began her search for corporate marketing jobs.

Graduating in a Pandemic

iphone screen with TikTok app

The fact Ripperger graduated during the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic presented a major challenge. After gaining some experience, she landed a job at Bath & Body Works as a marketing specialist.

Ripperger describes the corporate marketing and social media process as being very different.

She shares, "Executives set marketing themes, and it was really up to my team of three to bring their visions to life for 27 million viewers."

She found that videos were more effective than still photography at showing off all of Bath & Body Works' different products and fragrances. "As far as process goes, understanding the platforms and algorithms was key at all times."

Forging a new path

Looking for a change, Ripperger left Bath & Body Works to pursue more entrepreneurial goals. She has created two businesses since: a photography/videography company and a digital consultation freelance company.

Ripperger says, "It's really hard starting your own business, especially in the beginning, but I'm so glad I'm working for myself once again and creating for myself. I really like working on a lot of different projects, and this allows me to choose the clients I want to work with."

BW Roots Hold Strong

Looking back, Ripperger is grateful for her time at BW and credits two professors who have strongly impacted her.

From her experience in BW's Digital Marketing Center, she praises assistant professor Tim Marshall for the professional lessons she carries with her to this day. "His organization and the way he teaches students and runs the DMC is world-class, and I'm convinced he's putting out the best marketing professionals in any and every industry."

Ripperger also sees Dr. Ven Ochaya as a personal and professional mentor who prepared her for the world in ways she never expected. "I literally still find myself to this day saying, 'That's literally what Ven meant!' My personal favorite Ven-ism that I think has explained my professional career so far would be, 'It's like you're building the plane as you fly it.'"

Ripperger's career path shows that you can't account for everything that will happen in life, and you should continue to put yourself first and not be afraid to take chances. "Trust yourself and trust that you'll figure it out if you have the drive and will to succeed."

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