"What 2 Know" Podcast

Our What 2 Know podcast explores best practices, innovation and latest trends with industry experts with an eye toward helping you, the listener, stay ahead in digital marketing and communications. Popular Guests include: celebrity chef, Tyler Florence, former CEO of Citi Ventures, Debby Hopkins and Grammy nominated rapper/entrepreneur, Ryan Leslie. Topics include: leadership, audience architecture and engagement, entrepreneurship, content marketing and business development. 

Cooking Up Amazing Content and Audience Engagement with Tyler Florence | Ep.01


  In our first episode, our CMO Aaron Strout sits down with celebrity chef, Tyler Florence, to talk about his content creation process, upcoming cook books, and his journey to becoming one of the Food Network's brightest TV stars. He's known for walking folks through the steps to a tasty, home-cooked meal and now he shares how he delivers some of his best content yet.

Geeking Out Over Digital Devices, AI, and More with Chris Satchell | Ep 02


Executive Vice President & Chief Product Officer of Comcast, Chris Satchell chats with Aaron Strout, CMO of W2O Group, to discuss his role at Comcast, customer journey exploration, the power of voice activation, AI machine learning and more! 


Driving Change in Your organization with Former CEO of Citi Ventures, Deborah Hopkins | Ep.03


Former Chief Innovation Officer of Citi and CEO of Citi Ventures, Deborah Hopkins talks about how to successfully drive change in large organizations, overcome challenges in the workplace and empower members of your team. 



Creating Deeper Relationships with your Fans Through SuperPhone - A Chat with Singer Ryan Leslie



In our fourth episode, Grammy- nominated singer & CEO of Superphone, Ryan Leslie, sits down with W2O Group CMO, Aaron Strout, to discuss how he gained deeper intelligence about his fans through the power of his phone. He even gives away his phone number – find out why!

Exploring Five Global Trends Impacting Business with Haroon K. Ullah | Ep. 05



Haroon K. Ullah, author, scholar and a member of the Secretary of State’s Policy Planning staff, sits down with W2O Group Vice Chairman, Bob Pearson, to discuss how the intersection of technology, politics and international relations leads to discoveries of trends that often debunk myths that we have about global issues. He touches on surprising trends related to how ISIS recruits, why their narrative is positive and he also gives us a deeper look into his most recent book, The Bargain from the Bazaar.

Cultivating Platforms for Knowledge Sharing, Idea Curation, and Marketing Strategies with Brian Monahan of Pinterest | Ep 06



Brian Monahan, Head of Vertical Strategy at Pinterest, chats with Aaron Strout about his reason for co-founding NewCo with John Battelle, the power of knowledge sharing/idea curation, and various marketing strategies he practices at Pinterest.

Forging a Path to Entrepreneurship Through Passion, Investment and Perseverance with Chris Redlitz | Ep. 07



Chris Redlitz, venture capitalist and founder of Transmedia Capital, sits down with Aaron Strout to discuss how he followed his passions and persevered to become a successful entrepreneur. He also partnered with his wife to start The Last Mile, an organization designed to prepare incarcerated individuals for successful reentry through business and technology training.


Applying Technology to Build Businesses and Scalability with Max Ventilla, Founder and CEO of AltSchool | Ep. 08



Max Ventilla, Founder and CEO of AltSchool sits down with W2O Group CMO, Aaron Strout, to discuss how he leverages technology to build businesses, his experience working at Google, and how he’s dedicated his career to improving education through Altschool.

The Importance of Great Content, Empowering Women Entrepreneurs and the Power of Networking with Jory Des Jardins | Ep 09



Entrepreneur, Jory Des Jardins, sits down with W2O Group CMO, Aaron Strout, to discuss how she successfully built a network to empower female leaders and entreprenuers through BlogHer, her current involvement with SheWorx, and how she thinks content has evolved online. She also mentions other inspiring female leaders including Daina Middleton, former executive at Twitter and author of “Grace Meets Grit: How to Bring Out the Remarkable, Courageous Leader Within”.

Jory joined Jan Ryan, Partner at Capital Factory, at W2O Group’s Movers & Shapers event during SXSW 2017 to discuss how female founders and investors tend to think. View that talk here: http://w2o.to/2oOQaVo

Investing in Female Entrepreneurs, Platforms for Thought Leadership and the Power of Curiosity with Jesse Draper | Ep 10



Jesse Draper, Founder of Halogen Ventures and Creator/Host of Emmy-nominated series, “The Valley Girl Series” sits down with W2O CMO, Aaron Strout, to discuss her journey in investing in women entrepreneurs and how her curiosity and exposure to technology from an early age shaped her career. She’s a 4th generation investor who is passionate about investing in female-founded consumer technology companies and is a big fan of one of the greatest bands of all time. Take a listen to find out more!



Curating Content, Thought Leaders, Creativity and Emerging Trends through the SXSW Interactive Festival with Hugh Forrest | Ep 11



Hugh Forrest, Chief Programming Officer of the SXSW Interactive Festival, chats with Aaron Strout about his 28 year tenure with the organization, it’s evolution, impact on the community, and plans for the future. He even shares some inside scoop on his interaction with President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama. Listen to find out more.




Managing Communications, Growth and Corporate Reputation for Customers, Shareholders and Employees Globally with Marta Newhart of Johnson Controls | Ep 12



Marta Newhart, VP of Global Communications at Johnson Controls, chats with Aaron Strout about managing communication across a large, global organization. The impact of social media has changed how brands communicate with customers, shareholders and employees, which means marketers and communicators must always be ready to pivot. Take a listen to learn more!




Understanding the 7 Traits of Effective Entrepreneurial Employees with Jim Weiss of W2O Group | Ep 13


Jim Weiss, CEO of W2O Group, chats with Aaron Strout about his journey since starting and growing the firm, what inspires him, and what characteristics he looks for in employees that embody the “entrepreneurial spirit” of the company. Listen to learn more.

To hear more detail, check out the talk he gave at the National Summit on Strategic Communications on periscope here: http://w2o.to/2qp1bhk

View Jim’s blog post with accompanying visuals here: http://w2o.to/2qsRgW5

Crafting successful political campaigns and TV shows through Storytelling with exec producer of Showtime’s, The Circus, Mark McKinnon | Ep 14


Mark Mckinnon, political advisor, communications strategist, and exec producer of Showtime’s, The Circus, sits down with Aaron Strout to discuss how he’s leveraged storytelling as an approach to lead successful political campaigns. He also walks through how the show, The Circus: Inside the Greatest Political Show on Earth, came to fruition.

This episode was recorded at the National Summit in Strategic Communications. If you’d like key takeaways from that event, which Mark spoke at, you can view them on W2O Group’s blog here: http://w2o.to/2rQITEb

Exploring How the Power of Language can Impact Communications with Jennifer Farmer | Ep 15


Jennifer Farmer, MD of Communications for PICO National Networking, public speaker and book author, chats with Aaron Strout on she how she uses the power of language to effectively speak out on social issues. She also discusses her experience working through social justice campaigns within the Ohio Senate, Ohio House of Representatives, and Former President Barack Obama.

If you’d like key takeaways from the National Summit on Strategic Communications - which Jennifer spoke at and where this was recorded -you can view them here: http://w2o.to/2rQITEw

Exploring Best Practices to Innovate and Disrupt in the Digital Age with Entrepreneur and Author, Joseph Jaffe | Ep 16


Joseph Jaffe, CEO/Co-founder of Evol8tion (startupsforbrands.com) and author, sits down with Bob Pearson, Chief Innovation Officer of W2O Group, to discuss the steps organizations and individuals should consider to successfully innovate in a rapidly changing digital world. He references his experience working with an array of clients from start-ups to some of the world’s leading brands, and pinpoints how technology plays a key role in successful growth.

Check out his latest book, Z.E.R.O.: Zero Paid Media as the New Marketing Model, which dissects the marketing model, putting an emphasis on owned assets and entrepreneurship here: https://www.amazon.com/Z-R-Media-Marketing-Model/dp/1118801156

Rethinking our Relationship With Data, Information and Technology with John Battelle, Author, CEO & Co-Founder of NewCo | Ep 17


John Battelle, author, CEO & Co-Founder of NewCo chats with Aaron Strout about how we as marketers, communicators, and consumers should responsibly navigate our relationship with information. In order to innovate during an age where data and information are accessible like never before, it is key to recognize how information, data, advertising and UX are making the world smaller and more dynamic. Listen to find out more.

Winning Elections Through the Smart Use of Big Data, Targeting and Paid Social Media with Brad Parscale, Digital Director of Donald Trump’s Presidential Campaign | Ep 18

Brad Parscale, Digital Director for Donald Trump’s presidential campaign and President of Giles-Parscale Inc, sits down with Aaron Strout to discuss his revolutionary digital advertising approach which contributed to the success of the campaign, and his experience leading up to it. He also touches on the trends he’s seeing within the digital landscape and the strategic tactics he leverages to produce impactful content. As a bonus, Parscale reveals some behind-the-scenes scoop on data he collected during the election.

This episode was recorded at the National Summit on Strategic Communications. If you’d like key takeaways from the event, which Brad spoke at, you can view them on W2O Group’s blog here: http://w2o.to/sdfkjdel

Tracy DiNunzio, Founder & CEO of Tradesy: Creating a Collaborative Economy for Women in the World of Tech with Aaron Strout | Ep. 19

Tracy DiNunzio, Founder & CEO of Tradesy, chats with host Aaron Strout about navigating the venture capitalism space. Tracy dives into the advantages and challenges of being a woman in tech, the importance of diversity and inclusion, and how ultimately understanding how to sell to herself helped her sell her brand. 


Colonel William Reeder Jr. Identifies Key Traits of Effective Leadership and Recaps His Journey as a POW | Ep. 20 |

Colonel William Reeder Jr. chats with Aaron Strout about how to effectively lead and what makes an exceptional leader. Through his time in the military (including being a POW during the Vietnam war), Colonel Reeder recognizes how attitude effects outcome. Hear more about his remarkable journey.

Stephanie Cathcart, Global Head of External Affairs, Baker Hughes, a GE Company: Understanding How to be an Effective B2B Communicator with Aaron Strout | Ep. 21

Stephanie Cathcart, Global Head of External Affairs, Baker Hughes, a GE company, sits down Aaron Strout to discuss the multiple facets of B2B marketing. From crisis to comms to the importance of innovation, they discuss what it means to be an effective B2B communicator. Stephanie even recaps her experience working on a national political campaign. Plus you'll never guess Who is one of Stephanie's favorite bands. 

Joanne Pasternack, VP Community Relations & Exec. Director, Warriors Community Foundation: Growing Corporate Social Responsibility at Scale | Ep. 22

Joanne Pasternack, VP Community Relations, Exec. Director, Warriors Community Foundation has dedicated her career to helping businesses and organizations serve their communities. On this week's episode she shares why organizations value corporate social responsibility, what it takes to scale initiatives, and what value these initiatives bring to communities.

Jonathan H. Corr, President & CEO, Ellie Mae: Mastering the Balancing Act of High Tech & High Touch Customer Experiences | Ep. 23

Jonathan H. Corr, President & CEO of Ellie Mae, has seen the evolution of the mortgage business. Even though technology has changed the way the mortgage industry operates, Jonathan understands that customers value high touch experiences just as much as high tech experiences. On this week’s episode, he discusses this notion and the upcoming Ellie Mae Classic, a charity golf tournament that supports Bay area charities that our firm is also excited to support!

Mark Stouse, CEO, Proof: Running Large-Scale Cause and Effect Analysis to Support Businesses | Ep. 24

Mark Stouse, CEO, Proof recognizes the power of data and its necessity to any organization. On this week’s episode he discusses how to accurately prove cause and effect, but more importantly, the value that adds to a business

ZZ Ward, Musician: Reaching Your Audience in Authentically Through Social Media | Ep. 25

Musician, ZZ Ward, has used social media (particularly Instagram) to connect with her audience. From sharing her lack of love of early mornings to what it’s like to travel across two continents in three 3 days, ZZ’s fans have authentic and direct access. She discusses how this has helped shape her relationship with fans.

Adam Klein, Winner of Survivor: Championing for Good and Pursuing Your Dreams | Ep. 26

Adam Klein, winner of Survivor, has always believed in the power of championing for good while pursuing your dreams. From managing a homeless shelter to fighting cancer through a campaign inspired by his mother (#LiveLikeSusie), he understands no goal is out of reach.