Katie Diasti ’19 is the Founder and CEO of Viv, a mission-driven brand that is focused on placing earth-friendly and toxin-free products into the hands of every menstruator. The idea for Viv originated when Katie was an undergraduate at BC while studying Marketing and Managing for Social Impact with the priority of finding a solution for period care that prioritizes empowerment and sustainability. Keep reading to learn more about this mission-driven brand, Katie’s experiences at BC that led her to be a CEO of her own company, and her advice for current BC students!
Q: Viv is described as a mission-driven brand; how was this developed?
While at Boston College, I was studying Marketing and minoring in Managing Social Impact. I became really passionate about brands that did more than just sell products, but were standing up for social movements and getting political for what seemed like the first time ever. I was diving deeper into the hygiene and beauty space and was frustrated to see that most brands thrive on our insecurities rather than empower us. I knew Gen-Z would see through this and make it hard for brands like that to survive. While partaking in an entrepreneurship class my senior year at BC, I dove into the menstrual care space and did not find a brand that spoke to me as an eco-conscious and socially conscious consumer. I began unraveling all the problems associated with periods care — plastic waste, toxins, lack of access, the tampon tax, the list felt never ending! For an assignment that stated, find a problem and come up with a solution for it — bringing innovation into this industry turned into my instant passion.
Q: What does a typical day in the life look like, being the founder and CEO of Viv?
The beauty and chaos of an early stage startup is that everyday looks SO different. Some days we’re deep in supply chain mode and figuring out packaging logistics, other days we’re in a creative brainstorm or sewing tags on scrunchies for influencer PR kits. We do always start our day with a quick 15 minute check in call with our small but mighty team of 3!
Q: What advice would you offer to yourself back when you were a student at BC?
College is a place where you can create and build with almost endless resources and support. The BC community in particular is wildly supportive, if you have an idea there is most likely a professor, department or club that are experts in that space that can help you reach your goal! Go find them & create more!
Q: What has been your most impactful experience during your time at BC that has led to where you are today?
In terms of leading to Viv, the Shea Center accelerator, demo day, and the BC VC pitch competition! Those experiences gave me space to iterate Viv risk free and gain confidence that my simple idea in a class project could be my future career. In terms of personal growth, the friends and support system of professors, staff and fellow students at BC, especially in service organizations like 4B and Pulse have created a huge impact on who I am today.
Q: When you are not listening to Voices by Viv, a podcast by Viv, what are you listening to?
I think I’ve listened to almost every single How I Built This episode podcast that exists! I know way too many facts about Guy Raz at this point. I also start my day with NPR Up First podcast every single morning.