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Day in the Life: What a campaign manager at Whisper does all day

March 21, 2016
Aaron Polmeer

By Shareen Pathak


Alex Kurnow is the keeper of secrets. He just calls them “whispers.”

The 26-year-old editorial campaign manager works at Whisper, the fast-growing location-based app that lets people confess anonymously what they’re feeling. His role is to sift through the tens of thousands of “Whispers” that come through the app every day and then work with big brands that see how those companies can use Whispers for their own marketing campaigns.

It’s a role that perfectly encapsulates the big blurring of lines between platform, content and editorial. Kurnow is also a journalist, he says, in that he uses Whispers to spark what he calls “user stories” that both live on the site and provide fodder for publishers like BuzzFeed to write their own stories. And on the brand side, he is part of a larger trend of brands turning to user-generated content to appear more “authentic.” Whisper has so far worked with Coke, Disney, MTV and many others on brand campaigns, said Kurnow.

“I’m a human experience guy, so it’s cool how we’re taking regular conversations happening on the Internet and really turning them into a product,” he said. We asked Kurnow to share a day in his life.

Kurnow: ‘A human experience guy’

7:00 a.m.: Wake up, check the surfline wave forecast. The waves are looking up, so I hit up one of Whisper’s iOS developers on Slack to go surf on Venice Beach (right outside of Whisper HQ). We keep all of our boards at the office.

8:30 a.m.: I check Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat and Whisper every morning. Whisper just integrated GIFs via Giphy in our chat, so I have a full-blown Whisper conversation with somebody this morning using only pizza GIFs.

9:30 a.m.: I drive to Whisper HQ. Toast with fresh avocado and Tapatio sauce is my everyday breakfast ritual. I run into one of our product managers, Franklin Horn, in the kitchen, and we get the chance to catch up about a change we are planning to make to our admin tool that directly affects how we produce stories in the editorial department.

9:45 a.m.: A big part of my role is overseeing the execution of brand campaigns on Whisper, and I’m also heavily involved with the creative brainstorming process. A global beauty brand has told us they’re excited to work with Whisper, so I have a meeting with our brand team and we talk through what types of authentic conversations the beauty brand wants to be a part of, and how we can make their experience more emotional and visceral.  

10:30 a.m.: This is where the editorial portion of my day starts. I comb through our database to identify some of the highest-performing whispers to find common user trends and see if any spark user story ideas. I want to find the most emotionally charged and compelling content on Whisper — I find …read more

Source:: Digiday