ANA – Integrating AI/Machine Learning/Predictive Technologies into your Marketing Stack

Ah, marketers’ infatuation with AI!  But…  who can blame us when the same obsession can be observed in almost every industry and corner of the business world.  Though, all of us are still trying to figure out how to make it work – for our business.

Kevin Liu, Director of Marketing Operations at MongoDB, shared his experience with a couple of interesting (and now well-known) tools.

Kevin uses Lattice to improve lead scoring, which was previously set up in Eloqua in a traditional way.  Conversion increased dramatically after the switch.

MongoDB recreates scoring models every 6 to 12 months and employes several models: regional and market-specific.  A wonderful aspect of Lattice – no charge per scoring model, which allows flexibility and experimentation.

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Kevin also uses Conversica, which is loved by reps!

An interesting aspect: MongoDB uses Conversica to manage the lead volume.  Depending on the workload of the SDR team, Conversica gets either more or less leads.

Webinar and White Paper leads are typically channeled to Conversica, as the leads are not as active, and few sales reps have the patience to go through all 8-touch process with this type of leads.  Conversica is happy to help!

Book – The Age of Agile

book.PNGI picked up the book thinking the volume will answer my doubts about common implementations of the agile process…  (Are waterfall stages called “sprints” really “agile”?)  The book answered a more fundamental question: what is an agile mindset?  No, it is not the form, or name, or roles, or meeting types.  It is a collection of small groups solving a puzzle of delighting the customer – one completed project at a time.

The book is trying to tackle a critical challenge: how a company should be organized in a modern environment?  The company needs to succeed in the VUKA (Volatile, Uncertain, Complex and Ambiguous) world; what gives the organization the best chance?

The challenge businesses face would not decrease, but is expected to accelerate with time.

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Steven Danning suggests that a new management approach – agile – is the only known answer management should consider.  Even if the approach came from management-suspicious IT, it places the customer in the center and arms teams closest to the customer with the power to find and solve customer’s problems.  The approach works in tiny startups and large multinational corporations if it is supported by the organizational leadership and culture.

Interesting: it is not unusual for an organization starting its agile journey to struggle with “done” concept.   The project is “done,” when it is fully functional, can be used by the customer, and not a completed stage of a much larger undertaking.

Remarkably, the agile approach is good for customers (as the customer in the center), good for the employee engagement (as employees have the authority to solve customer problems and see the fruits of their work), and also good for employees as people (no “emergencies” devouring evenings and weekends).  And – this approach also makes (and keeps) the organization profitable.

The names of the teams,  meetings, and tasks can be anything we want 🙂

 

ANA – Closed-Loop Customer Discovery

We may not think too much about the concept of an industry survey.  We might think more about an incentive to encourage a customer or a prospect to share with a marketer his infinite wisdom in the area where the marketer should know everything.  Somehow, the most important insight tend to escape the marketer, and, if found, is valuable to other potential customers.  Though we may not think holistically (or even long enough?) about an industry survey unless we are lucky to stop by a marketing event, hear interesting ideas, and start asking questions…

Closed-Loop Customer Discovery: Converges Demand Gen, Market Research & Thought Leadership

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Another typical marketing approach: a survey might be intriguing for a person who is filling it out because he will get the aggregated report with answers of his colleagues and competitors.  Aha – this is a great opportunity to satisfy natural curiosity and…  generate some materials for marketer’s next demand gen program…  and never share with the product organization.

Closed-Loop Customer Discovery Center is based on understanding customer pain points, providing an assessment with a response immediately valuable for the responder.  This “evolved” assessment can be valuable for the responder again when he reaches the next milestone in his organization’s business journey.  This thought process not only satisfies prospect’s immediate interest and generates materials for the next thought leadership masterpiece, but also contributes to product ideas and gives sales insight.

Results can be rather remarkable.

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SAP example of Analytics STrategy Assessment and the link to take the assessment.

book.pngThe cooperation and coordination between all involved groups are critical for the project.  The questions must be found on the intersection of customer pain points and the company’s product; the answers should provide value for the person who filled out the survey…  potentially, multiple times.

More information can be found in Adrian’s book, The 24-Hour Customer: New Rules for Winning in a Time-Starved, Always-Connected Economy, which is now on my reading list 🙂

Excellent event!