Creating climate content with The Cool Down
MCJ Startup Series
Today’s guests are Dave Finocchio and Anna Robertson, co-founders of The Cool Down.
Since the beginning, media businesses have been in the game of building audience segments and mobilizing those audiences to do something. Most American media has learned how to mobilize audiences on various platforms to click or view ads. To buy stuff. But in the wake of the climate crisis, there are certainly better uses of our time online and purchasing power.
As you’ll see in this episode, some media companies are trying to get people to become local leaders in their communities or make climate conscious purchases. The Cool Down aims to do this and become America's mainstream climate brand. Dave and Anna have extensive digital media credentials that are as strong as they come, and (bonus!) they met via the MCJ member community.
In this conversation, Cody learns more about Dave and Anna’s backgrounds as media leaders, how and why they decided to apply their skills to climate, the gaps in climate communication today, what audiences they are targeting, and how they plan to build a business or otherwise monetize The Cool Down. Since launching earlier this year, Anna and Dave are just at the beginning of figuring out who these climate-motivated audiences are and how they can be mobilized, but they made one thing abundantly clear: their goal is to reach mainstream audiences to have an even bigger impact in the climate fight.
In this episode, we cover:
[3:03] Anna's background at ABC News and Yahoo
[6:26] Dave's media experience and transition to climate
[12:19] Gap in media and climate communications
[16:15] The Cool Down's storytelling strategy
[19:18] Popular climate topics they’re experimenting with
[22:15] Value-based actions that are good for people and the planet
[29:45] Packaging tech innovation into engaging, digestible content
[35:19] Taking local actions that benefit communities
[38:27] Anna and Dave's business model and how they're starting to test it
[48:16] What's next for The Cool Down
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Episode recorded on September 7, 2022.