Slutty Vegan, owned by Clark Atlanta alum Pinky Cole, has truly revolutionized the vegan food industry, and arguably the food industry as well. As Pinky shared with Mogul Millennial, “90% of the Slutty Vegan patrons are Black. It’s been a beautiful, modern-day revolution of introducing veganism to Black meat-eaters. Matter-of-fact, the people we target are meat-eaters. We already have vegans, so we are focused on those avid meat-eaters. If we can convert more non-vegans to vegans than we are literally changing the dynamic of our culture, our health, economy, and the way we live.”

Changing our culture and being a dynamic, influential force definitely defines this Mogul Millennial, Pinky Cole.

Slutty Vegan quickly and organically gained popularity from consumer and celebrities all across the nation. For years, people would travel to Slutty's Vegan first location in Atlanta to get "sluttified" by trying out one of their vegan creations.

Fast-forward to today, Slutty Vegan has over 10 locations including Atlanta, Dallas, Harlem, and Birmingham.

The entrepreneurship bug bit Pinky Cole early at age 14.

At 14, Pinky started her entrepreneurship journey by re-selling fast food burgers to her friends in high school. #genius

Afterward, she was making nearly $4,000 per week by becoming the youngest party promoter in Baltimore at the age of 16.

Upon graduating from high school, she went to college at Clark Atlanta and majored in Mass Media Arts. With her new degree in hand, she worked for Teach for America, but it only lasted for 5 days. As Pinky told Mogul Millennial, “I’m definitely a teacher, but not in the classroom.”

After a short stint as an educator, Pinky worked as a production assistant for a court tv show, and then later worked as a TV producer for the Maury Show. While working there, the love of entrepreneurship still had a soft spot in Pinky’s heart. After thinking about her current skill set and being inspired by a friend, she used the money she earned on the Maury Show to open her first restaurant.

The restaurant, a Jamaican-American restaurant in Harlem called Pinky’s, opened in August 2014. Unfortunately, after years of being successful, it was burnt down in July 2016 due to a grease fire.

Experiencing this type of loss as a business owner wasn’t easy. From there Pinky started focusing again on herself, and eventually took a job again in the TV industry as a casting director with Iyanla Vanzant’s show Fix My Life. This new gig brought her back to Atlanta, which was where the concept of Slutty Vegan came to life.

Pinky decided her next restaurant business would be focused on plant-based burgers because it was something fun, and one she could easily put a creative twist to.

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On her first day of business, she sold a discouraging four burgers, but a week later she sold 100 burgers after influencer Dymetra Pernell mentioned Slutty Vegan’s burgers on her Instagram. This inspired Pinky and helped her realize the impact social media could have on her business.

Recently, we chatted with Pinky and she shared a few social media marketing tips that you’ll find helpful for your own business.

Video content is lit. Get into it.

Pinky didn’t necessarily have a “marketing plan” when she launched Slutty Vegan, but she knew a few things. She noticed that video content was booming on social media, so she aimed to create an experience on social where we people could visually taste the food.

“I would find people who patronized the business and would have them bite the burger on camera. I would have them say they were ‘sluttified’ if that’s how they felt, and that became a thing. It became a natural reaction and saying for the Slutty Vegan customers,” Pinky shared.

This idea of getting customers to try out her burgers on camera went viral, and all kind of people including influencers, and celebrities like Mike Epps, were wanting to be filmed tasting her burger.

Simple is always in.

In the early days, Slutty Vegan’s Instagram was run solely by Pinky and was driven by whatever idea happens to inspire her.

“As it relates to the pattern on social media, I wanted to make sure it was a simple clean page, with engaging visuals. As simple as it is, there is truly a science to mastering social media. I didn’t have a strict posting schedule where I had to post at certain times throughout the day; everything has been more organic,” Pinky told Mogul Millennial.

Fast-forward to today, her social media team hasn't deterred away from Pinky's proven social media strategy (keep it simple, with engaging visuals).

Be you. It’ll pay off.

If you want to create fast, yet organic growth for your business, be authentic, transparent, and unafraid to be the face of your brand.

“People feel more connected and like they are apart of your dream when you’re transparent. Allow people to fall in love with you. When people know you and trust you, it’s more likely they’ll support you.”

To-date Slutty Vegan has become a household name in not only the vegan food space, but the restaurant industry as a whole. In 2022, Pinky raised a $25 million round of series A funding, led by prolific restaurateur Danny Meyer’s investment group, Enlightened Hospitality. This investment has taken Slutty Vegan to new heights, and we can only imagine where they will go from here.