4 min read

Wavemaker’s Head of Content Talks Building A “Whole Cow” Video Strategy

On the second episode of season four of The Rough Cut, Storyhunter co-founder Alex Ragir met up with Wavemaker’s Head of Content &…
Wavemaker’s Head of Content Talks Building A “Whole Cow” Video Strategy

On the second episode of season four of The Rough Cut, Storyhunter co-founder Alex Ragir met up with Wavemaker’s Head of Content & Experience, Noah Mallin, during Advertising Week in New York City (since this interview, Noah has left Wavemaker). Wavemaker is the second largest media agency in the world, and they run advertising for L’Oreal, Xerox, IKEA and many more international brands. Alex and Noah talked about how to implement a “Whole Cow” approach for your video strategy, why podcasts continue to grow in popularity and how to build digital content that appeals to a younger audience.

On the go? Listen to the full interview on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Play, and wherever you listen to your shows!

Below are edited highlights of the conversation:

Create Video With A “Whole Cow” Strategy

“We don’t like to think about it as one platform or another platform. I think the strategy sometimes is ‘Here’s what we’re gonna do for social, and here’s what we’ll do for streaming’ and we don’t like to think about it that way. The way we like to think about it is how do you scale a story? And to scale a story, you start out with the idea that the story will be in many different formats and many different places. If you start from that, you’re able to take the time to gather the assets that you’ll need to do things like be in Instagram or Snapchat Stories but also be in the news feed, long-form video and cinema screens and actually have all the assets and the cuts to do that and to tell a consistent story across all of those places.”

“Whole Cow” Approaches Vary Between Long and Short-Form Content

“The Whole Cow approach to fast content is going to be much different from the whole cow approach to more immersive content. I think it’s one thing to take something that’s meant to be long-form and shoot it in a way that you have those short and even micro-content extensions coming out of it. On the other hand, if you’re taking something and it’s meant to be quick turnaround, very quick kind of short-form content, the Whole Cow is going to be more about making sure you’ve got news feed distribution capability, story distribution capability and that you’re set up for as many platforms as possible.”

Audio Based Media, Can Be Leveraged Into Video

“Audio can actually lend itself well to video extensions. The truth is that a good story through a podcast can also translate to video. So what we’ve talked to clients about, and what we’re working on, is something that might initially play out through a podcast, having a video extension. That can be anything from very basic like shooting the podcast as it’s being done to animating it, to actually taking it and having a shoot with the same basic scripts, but bringing it to life with live-action.”

Position Media In “Transitional Periods”

“The interesting thing about podcasts is tying it to other trends. Like commute times for people have continued to get longer and longer and I don’t think it’s any surprise that podcasts have exploded as commute times b have exploded. The time that people spend in podcasts is time that I like to call transitional time. You’re not at home. You’re not at work. You’re between those spaces. If you’re home, you’re making a meal, or you’re cleaning the house. And that’s an interesting frame of mind and a very valuable one if you think about reaching people as a brand. The same goes for mobile gaming. People are playing mobile games when they’re on the subway. It’s the same deal.”

Younger Generations Are Curious About People From Other Backgrounds

“One thing that’s really exciting to me is how diverse the voices are in the industry compared to ten or fifteen years ago. We’re seeing people from so many different backgrounds who are able to bring their experiences to storytelling, and one of the things we’ve thought about a lot is diversity, especially for younger generations. We have the most diverse population that we’ve ever had coming up in the US. What’s interesting about that is that it’s not necessarily ‘Because I come from this background I want to see others from this background’. That’s definitely true, but it’s also curiosity about other people.”

Previous episodes of The Rough Cut:

Season Four:

Jason Xenopoulos, New York CEO & North American CCO, VMLY&R

Season Three:

Riyaad Minty, Director of Digital, TRT

Stacey Grier, Chief Marketing Officer, The Clorox Company

Alan Schulman, Chief Creative Officer, Deloitte Digital

Jeffrey Wisenbaugh, Head of Content, Instagram (Part 2)

Jeffrey Wisenbaugh, Head of Content, Instagram (Part 1)

Kate Whitney, Director of Digital, Pernod Ricard

Charlie Chappell, Head of Integrated Media, The Hershey Company

Season Two:

David Weinstock, Chief Creative Officer, RF|Binder

Bonin Bough, Founder & CEO, Bonin Ventures

Mary Kate McGrath, Chief Content Officer, Gallery Media Group

Barri Rafferty, President & CEO, Ketchum

Stacy Minero, Global Head of Content Creation, Twitter

Ari Halper, Chief Creative Officer, FCB New York

Mickey Meyer, President of Network, Group Nine Media

Season One:

Courtney Coupe, VP of Content, Great Big Story

Stone Roberts, VP of Global Video Strategy, Refinery29

Jason Beauregard, Head of Studio, VaynerMedia

Zahra Rasool, Editorial Lead, Contrast VR

Warren Cohen, Head of Video, New York Post

Greg Gilderman, Global Head of Video and Editor-in-Chief, Weather Channel

Jamie Bolding, Founder and CEO, Jungle Creations

Craig Duff, Video Journalism Professor, Northwestern’s Medill School of Journalism

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By Jake Watkins, Head of Stories