#47 Paul Wilson on the Future of Marketing Operations with AI
[00:00:00-00:00:20] Pierce Ujjainwalla
I’m Pierce Ujjainwalla and you’re listening to Unsubscribed! Every episode I sit down with business leaders to help you question everything you thought you knew about marketing. If you enjoyed the show please do subscribe and leave a review on Youtube or your favorite podcast player. Now onto this episode.
[00:00:23–00:0043] Pierce Ujjainwalla
Awesome. Alright coming to you live from a very special edition of the Unsubscribed! Podcast. We’re here in Las Vegas for the 2023 Adobe Summit, and I’m joined with none other than the Paul Wilson. It’s incredible to have you here.
[00:00:44–00:00:48] Paul Wilson
This feels like a long overdue conversation that just has.
[00:00:48-00:00:49] Pierce Ujjainwalla
[00:00:49-00:00:50] Paul Wilson
A decade in the making.
[00:00:51-00:00:56] Pierce Ujjainwalla
That started many years ago at a Marketo user group in Ottawa of all places.
[00:00:56-00:00:57] Paul Wilson
[00:00:58-00:00:59] Pierce Ujjainwalla
It’s a small world.
[00:01:00– 00:01:07] Paul Wilson
Many many moons ago. Yeah. I think it’s great. It’s good to be back an somewhat it’s good to be back in person after four years and getting the opportunity to connect like this.
[00:01:08–00:01:16] Pierce Ujjainwalla
It’s such a, it’s such a meeting point, right, every year where you get together, it always feels like a, a big reunion.
[00:01:16– 00:01:20] Paul Wilson
Like a high school reunion every year and you see people, you’re like oh look, they’ve lost weight.
[00:01:21-00:01:41] Pierce Ujjainwalla
Yeah, yeah. I hope people said that about me, I don’t think so. Yes, I got two kids now. Yeah no, it’s great to, great to be here. And after hiatus too, we just wrapped up the keynote session. What did you think?
[00:01:42–00:02:39] Paul Wilson
Yeah, every year when I see the way that adobe looks at the world, I think that the challenges that marketing operations professionals face just explode. The new capabilities and the new, it’s great to see all the great new tools, but those new capabilities always drive more work for operations professionals because what is slick and easy on stage takes the support of those operations teams. So the capabilities, the AI capabilities that Adobe is rolling out. The stuff that they showed with the ability to take, you know, the image of a tent, just sort of a flat image of a tent sitting on a bare floor in the capabilities of the adobe sensei engine to take that image and you can drop it into literally any background. The lighting adapts, the colours adapt for the light. Like the whole.
[00:02:40–00:02:52] Pierce Ujjainwalla
That was amazing, and they said the whole presentation, at least that one slide was made all from Firefly.
[00:02:53-00:02:54] Paul Wilson
[00:02:54-00:02:56] Pierce Ujjainwalla
Which is their new image generator.
[00:02:56-00:03:34] Paul Wilson
Yeah. You know I think that it’s all part of the ongoing future state of content and how content, be it image content or text content, all of the inputs around the capabilities that machine learning can do to bring content much farther along, much easier. Add image when they were able to take the final image of the tent in situ where it was on the campground, and then immediately see the various display ad formats, the mobile device formats, all of it.
[00:03:34-00:4:00] Pierce Ujjainwalla
Cool integration. I noticed a few times, and I thought it was interesting because it seemed like definitely did this on purpose, they talked about the AI as a co- pilot. It was never the AI is going to do this. Was definitely a focus around the co-pilot that marketers are going to have some part to play in this future.
[00:04:01-00:04:32] Paul Wilson
Never tell you that Skynet going to be able to do it all. You know, Skynets going to be a partner. I really believe that. I mean I think that if machine learning engines are just being designed being designed to speak to other machine learning engines, you don’t need to human creation factor. But the human dynamic is still not something that Machine learning systems can comprehend today.
[00:04:33-00:05:51] Pierce Ujjainwalla
So we were talking a little but about this yesterday, and then I had a meeting with the CEO of Revenue Pulse, Joe, last night. And he is running a bunch of events here at Summit, some Marketo sessions, mixology session, a dessert session. He said to come up with these ideas he asked ChatGPT about what he thought that it should do. And what blew my mind, because I agree with you, I think my opinion on AI is humans no other humans we can connect best with others. Those nuances are gonna be hard for the computer. Blew my mind that Joe told me is that the events that ChatGPT recommended that he ran the highest registered events. Which is wild.
[00:05:32–00:06:48] Paul Wilson
Well I can understand the context of that because, no I’m sure Joe’s a brilliant guy and so are you. Available scope of information Machine learning engine has at its fingertips, just exceeds our capabilities as generalists. Think humans are generalists. We need to be able to deal with you know, getting the kids out of bed and to school and whether or not the links are properly configured in the tokens in a Marketo email. Like we, the scope of what we need to be able to do and react to is tremendous. And it’s got the human variable. Machine learning engines sees data all day long can use algorithmic views to say, obviously this data is more consumed than that data, I’m gonna recommend these events. So it has that whole ecosystem it doesn’t have to process the, the same thing that we do as humans so.
[00:06:49–00:7:42] Pierce Ujjainwalla
Yeah, absolutely. I feel, I don’t know if you feel this way, I go on Twitter now and all I read is like, 10 great things you can do with AI for marketers. Explosion, not just chat GPT, but a bunch of other tools that people have already packaged. Me, I feel a little bit overwhelmed of like, there seems like so much to learn, .like I like to be someone who stays ahead of things. And you know both of us are very early in CRM and marketing automation, and I feel we’re on the cusp of this next thing. Do you, how are you kind of playing with these tools, experimenting. A doo you feel the same way I do?
[00:07:43-00:09:52] Paul Wilson
Right. Yeah I think I really fundamentally believe you look at the speed of technology transformation, in a short period of time, let’s just say 20 years. .20 years is not a long time. I mean it feels like a long time if you’re 22 years old. 20 years is not a long period of time. And the speed of technology change in these last 20 years is just breathtaking. And I kind of feel like our technology society .and we as technologist feel like chat GPT came from nowhere. But in reality it’s kind of like, you know the middle age actor who’s been acting for 20 years, not getting great parts then all of a sudden gets that part. And everyone’s response is where is this guy been? And he’s like, I’ve been doing TV commercials, been doing stage plays. Like he’s been around in growing. And it’s, GPT has hit the tipping point we’re all paying attention now because it has matured to a place where we can see practical application for it. So for me, the next phase is it’s not going to go away now that it’s hit that inflection point. What do we as marketing operations, getting technologist due to adapt our environments now take advantage of this new framework of content that is gonna come our way. So that’s the way I look at it. I’m totally mystified that it’s here, but now my question is OK, how do we operationalize it? What do we do with it?
[00:09:53-00:10:39] Pierce Ujjainwalla
How do we become the co-pilots? Yeah I mean and I’ve seen over the years, AI, I mean people were even in the Martech space calling their applications AI powered. And usually it sounded great but you tried it and it was usually pretty lackluster. I can’t think of any great applications I’m like this is amazing. But it feels to me now like chat GPT is at a level where it’s good enough that it is mind blowing, the point where you use it once and it’s such an experience. So mostly going on the Internet for the first time.
[00:10:40-00:11:40] Pierce Ujjainwalla
Yeah I completely agree. I think that it’s that transformative moment we’re all kind of feeling and ,the algorithms ability to humanize the results that we get, guess what we’re seeing as different because basically, it’s a hyper active google search. I mean you’re searching the Internet for content instead of it being a response that’s a bunch of links to relevant articles, ,the engine is doing is it saying, OK, wanna know about how to raise a puppy, going to synthesize the best results like you would in a google search and instead of just letting you go and consume the results, it’s got a framework to synthesize that and give you those suggested eight best steps to raise a puppy.
[00:11:41-00:12:18] Pierce Ujjainwalla
It’s amazing. Our development team at Knak is already using it. And I don’t know why, I felt like they would be a little resistant to it of like, well we’re, we write the code. But I feel out of everyone I’ve almost embraced it the most. Like the quickest. They, they’ve told me if there’s a bug they can put it into chat GPT and say find the bug. And it’s, it’s accurate and it’s saving them days of time already.
[00:12:19-00:12:26] Paul Wilson
Well, your engineering team has discovered it. Every high school teenager has discovered it.
[00:12:26-00:12:27] Pierce Ujjainwalla
Yeah I’m never writing an essay.
[00:12:28-00:13:45] Paul Wilson
Right, and what’s interesting is the idea what digital literacy will mean. Cause I think to your point where humans were problem solvers in code before, what’s optimization and the ability to move some of that, not meant to be disrespectful of coders but the grunt work of fixing bugs. To me it’s very similar if I look from a marketer’s lens, you know, the random ad hoc pieces of content that BDR’s are trying to fling out into the world to get some sort of response, that content, the idea of a BDR, you know, that they want to send it out to Pierce. So they’ll go on LinkedIn see if there’s anything new in Pierce’s feed. Nothing new in the Knak feed. Well maybe there’s something new interesting in the general email space. Send you a piece of content saying hey Pierce, have you seen this? Do you have time next Tuesday for a call? Like, some of that grunt work related to content is, when you start being generated automatically.
[00:13:45– 00:14:01] Pierce Ujjainwalla
It’s amazing. I’m thinking now you know, how do I empower the whole company with AI. Like, do we get everyone in the company licenses to chat GPT into training around it or.
[00:14:01-00:14:04] Paul Wilson
Well, you don’t want people sharing licenses, right?
[00:14:04-00:14:09] Pierce Ujjainwalla
Yeah, no, no of course not. The AI will come after me.
[00:14:09–00:16:08] Paul Wilson
That’s an interesting question. Like I think that the applications shouldn’t only fit are you available technology solutions today. So it may be that in your support organization, because Chat GPT at the moment, the Open AI framework only applies to content bailable on the Internet up till like 2021. So it doesn’t know the context of what your support team needs to say to someone when they’ve got an issue and they need to have it addressed. So you know your support team probably isn’t yet ready for AI. But when the open AI framework and adapt include not only Internet content, specific Intranet type content from your CRM that shows all the case histories to be able to provide a response that’s more contextual, that’s where I think the ability to deploy AI cross the business is going to expand. What I would say in this fiscal year do you need to incorporate it into the plan. You need to start saying OK, where can machine learning content improve customer experience in business development? And then start making sure that those teams have the operational capacity to to leverage machine learning content. And apply it to the business. I would also say if you start doing that, be really transparent to the customers and prospects that you’re talking to and say hey you know this case suggestion brought to you by KnakGPT. And you know, was this good? Like ensure that there’s some feedback. But I think that businesses particularly in your size of organization, and you’re scaling and going out into the market and growing, you absolutely need to plan to adapt that into the way that you go to market.
[00:16:08- 00:16:36] Pierce Ujjainwalla
I feel like we could talk all day about the AI stuff. I would like to switch gears a little bit cause I think you have a such an interesting story and your career and why you started and what you’re doing now. I’d love to hear just more about your experience and how you ended up you know as the VP of marketing ops at One Trust.
[00:16:37-00:18:09] Paul Wilson
Sure. You know it’s, it’s a I think it’s an interesting, I mean because it’s mine and I think it’s an interesting journey just because it’s not curated it’s not crafted. You know so again going back to the idea that 20 years ago it’s not that far. If I roll back the clock 20 years ago, I was in sales, I was helping build inside sales organizations for a division of Nortel. And in that organization at the time, we were using Hoover’s as a website where you would go and try to get information about companies that you wanted to talk to you. We had very rudimentary CRM systems that were available to us. And you know I started bumping into the challenge of how to use information and technology to enable to inside sales organization that I was growing to be able to be more authentic and connect to the people they were trying to connect to, and have those conversations start. And you know from those early days being in sales and building sales organizations, I’m morphed into being that sales person who is always trying to get the person running the CRM to make changes, to update things, to add a field, to give me more day to do things. And that need pushed me onto sort of the other side of the formula.
[00:18:10-00:18:14] Pierce Ujjainwalla
That must’ve been very early days in the CRM space.
[00:18:15-00:19:19] Paul Wilson
Yeah, we’re talking 2001, 2002. I had a salesforce instance in 2001, you know, in early free trial in salesforce and you know sales was an accidental career for me, I really enjoyed explaining things to people. So I was sort of an educator sales person. I was not a you know typical type a sales person. And so helping train sales people was,, you know, definitely a great role for me and it was a good fit. And I started being the inside sales person or inside sales manager who is also the CRM administrator. So in a small start up in Ottawa call DNA 13, I was owning salesforce. Then we started using a marketing automation tool called Vtrenz, which was then bought by Silver pop, which was then bought by IBM. But you know, we had Vtrenz and then we went to HubSpot and I was tinkering with how to incorporate the two platforms of marketing automation and CRM.
[00:19:20-00:19:25] Pierce Ujjainwalla
So you were in the right place at the right time.
[00:19:25-00:19:26] Paul Wilson
With the right problem.
[00:19:26-00:19:36] Pierce Ujjainwalla
Sales force right problem, yeah there’s a good problem. You we’re implementing that at a company. Then what happened?
[00:19:37–20:57] Paul Wilson
Yeah, so the company that I was working for, DNA 13, was acquired, and then I kind of took that as my opportunity to leap and you know the, the expression leap on the net and will appear happened to me. So I decided I wanted to do CRM consulting. I wanted to be a four hire sales force administrator. And the company that acquired us hired me to migrate to salesforce instance that we had into the larger salesforce instance. And then I stuck around selling blocks of hours to them to help them in their CRM implementation. I gave me opportunity to be in a larger implementation of salesforce and honing my skills and what those challenges would look like. And then, you know I just started getting by word of mouth additional customers. So I was a salesforce consultant for, many years. And then around 2011, I had an opportunity to really focus in on marketing automation and CRM. So I did a couple of HubSpot consulting gigs, a couple of Eloqua gigs, a couple of migrations.
[00:20:58-00:21:20] Pierce Ujjainwalla
And when you did that, when you saw marketing automation for the first time, did it feel like the first time you saw CRM? What are the similarities there or, you know, I imagine you were going along, you were getting new customers, you were doing a lot with salesforce. What prompted you to get into marketing automation?
[00:21:21-00:21:35] Paul Wilson
What was really interesting as that was, you know, kind of the early days of website telemetry. So we had the kind of tools that could tell you when a specific company was on your website. I mean, this was mystical capabilities.
[00:21:36-00:21:42] Pierce Ujjainwalla
Remember we used like LeadLander at one of the companies. And I remember the sales people love that.
[00:21:43-00:24:07] Paul Wilson
And so there I was, there were these new technologies that were coming from the marketing side, in salesforce as a platform was like opportunities in accounts. I mean there’s leads and other things. But you know like the whole focus was revenue, and the marketing tools looked at that idea of the ability to see behaviours and how do you then translate, oh, well these people seem more interested. So it started adding shape to the funnel. And the ability to say OK well, you know, telling the sales organization these companies, you may think you wanna go after these hundred companies, but if I look at the companies who have been on our website for the last 30 days, only three of those hundred have been here. So yeah, you can keep going and knocking on the doors, but you should look at the companies are already here. And so that was the dawn of inbound and Hubspot and led that drive. So SEO optimization. And so that whole lens of what the website was capable and you know then translate it into nurturing that engagement people actually talking to a sales person. So the technology exploded that whole top and was the funnel world. And I mean, we now, let’s go back to our conversation earlier about where Adobe sits today. Like the trillions of touch points of data that are available that company so they can leverage putting them into a data warehouse to the point of machine learning algorithm to be able to say, all right, well here’s the next best piece of content for you. Here’s what the sales person should talk to you next. Like a little did I know 10 years ago that that was the dawn of where we could get two today. But all of the technology challenges that I’ve encountered in that, in the last 12 years of technology change, has really just been part of the landscape getting brighter. And I’ve had a great opportunity in my career, to advance to large organizations, getting to work at Merketo, getting to go through the Merketo acquisition into Adobe and that adaptation, so another migration project.
[00:24:08–00:24:23] Pierce Ujjainwalla
I’d love to dig in more there, just what that experience was like working at Marketo during what must had been an exciting time having Adobe acquire the company.
[00:24:24-24:48] Paul Wilson
Well it was, really again, I can’t say that my journey has been a curated journey. It was really just the great chances of the people that I’ve met and the people I get to know, I developed a kind of a esoteric skill set around Microsoft dynamics as a CRM with Marcato.
[00:24:49-00:24:52] Pierce Ujjainwalla
It’s rare, a rare breed of consultant who knows that.
[00:24:52-00:25:56] Paul Wilson
So having that skill set was fortuitous for me because the partners organization of Marketo realized that more partners needed to understand how to support dynamics customers. And so I join the partners organization to you know help develop more partners that had that skill set, you know, help for the certification programs and everything related to the partners team. And parallel with that, Marketo itself is undergoing a transformation of needing to re-engineer our own salesforce instance. And the decision was made while doing that to move off of the then decade plus old original Marketo instance for Marketo and move onto a new instance. And I happen to be in the right place at the right time with the right skill set.
[00:25:57-00:26:02] Pierce Ujjainwalla
So you built the new Marketo instance that Adobe uses today?
[00:26:03–00:26:30] Paul Wilson
Well no. So through the acquisition, Marketo moved to its own new Merketo instance. Which survive into the acquisition. At the time of the acquisition, Marketo, sorry, Adobe decided they needed their own Marketo instance. So then a whole new instance was set up that yes, I was heavily involved in Marketo customer zero, the MCZ instance of Mercato for Adobe, and.
[00:26:31-00:26:38] Pierce Ujjainwalla
That’s a pretty cool claim to fame, Paul. I mean, you just kind of brushed over that, but that’s, that’s pretty awesome.
[00:26:38-00:26:47] Paul Wilson
It’s a great opportunity. And you know those, that’s what I’m saying, those are moments that I can’t try to take any credit for. They happen to get those great opportunities.
[00:26:48-00:21:20] Pierce Ujjainwalla
That’s amazing. Having kind of being on both sides, the consulting side, the client side, the vendor, you know, that all of us know, what, I mean you must have some unique perspectives that you’ve got from being on all of those different sides. Is there anything you can share with us, like what was the biggest learning, biggest lightbulb moment having been kind of full circle?
[00:27:21-00:29:06] Paul Wilson
Yeah that, I think there’s two. One is what we do is hard. This is very difficult. There are no simple playbooks. A Marketo implementation is a blank whiteboard. It does not come preset. It isn’t like HubSpot or some of the other systems that come with canned capabilities that are then limited. Merketo is an open slate. And the challenges that marketing operations teams face on a daily basis are technical complexity, data complexity, process complexity, and the marketers themselves sabotaging unintentionally everything that you’re trying to curate and own and build. So the first thing is what we do is hard. And as professionals, I think we should, we should enjoy the scars that we have. I think we should feel proud of the work that we’ve done because it is, it’s a difficult space that we’re in. And the second is, having been in so many of the different angles of what the conversation is, agency side, customer side, vendor side, the patients that’s needed to get to what is really important. It takes time. It’s a very important part of the work. Because you could hear a requirement and quickly say, I know exactly what Hass to happen. Go and build it and deploy it and it’s completely wrong. It’s pushing through and really finding out what is, what are you trying to make actually happen?
[00:29:07-00:29:09] Pierce Ujjainwalla
The business outcome, the value.
[00:29:09-29:25] Paul Wilson
The complex nurture. You know, all of those things, it’s all about patience to go as far as you can and asked really good questions to get all the information before you think you got it figured out.
[00:29:26-00:30:11] Pierce Ujjainwalla
Yeah, that’s great. Great perspective and unique. I don’t think there’s that many people who, how have been in all of those places. Yeah, we’ve been fortunate to get to work together. Having you as a Knak customer at a few different companies now. Can you maybe share, you know, what were some of the challenges that you were facing at, at Slack or at OneTrust that made you think? Because although we knew each other from back in the day in Ottawa we, we weren’t, you know, in super tight connection. And I remember one day Brandon told me hey, I’m talking to Paul Wilson. I said I know that guy.
[00:30:12-00:32:17] Paul Wilson
Right. So in those two examples, Slack and OneTrust, they’re different, but they really I think they do really highlight the strength of neck as a platform. At Slack there was the, acquisition and the move into salesforce. So some of the back and systems were probably going to adapt. So the idea of being able to use Slack as a persistent layer where marketers didn’t need to worry so much about what was happening in the back end, which is very important when we start talking about OneTrust. But for Slack, there was a secondary element. But the main, the main element was really facilitating that self-serve capability for marketers to generate assets on their own in an approval framework. And so it’s, it’s easy to deploy the capability to let marketers build things. The conversation of whether or not you want to put them in that platform is a different conversation for a different day. But yes, marketers are able to go and do something in a platform to make an email or landing page exist. That is true, you could deploy that. But in specific, or particularly large organizations in enterprise organizations, getting the asset to exist is only one third of the journey. Getting it to be properly reviewed, and approved, and all the minutia that goes back and forth related to that is another third. And then protecting and ensuring the brand compliance and the standards compliance is the other third. And so yes, they can create an email, but that ignores the other parts of the work. And so for Slack that was really the important components and the capabilities of having Knak integrated in slack was also great.
[00:32:18-00:332:20] Pierce Ujjainwalla
Yeah, yeah we built that integration.
[00:32:30-00:33:36] Paul Wilson
So that was important. For one trust, we had, when we started the journey with Knak we had an existing set of four MarTech infrastructures. So we had, through acquisition two HubSpot’s and a Marketo instance and OneTrust on Eloqua. And so they were for complete Martech infrastructures, and we were working through the, the effort to collapse those into one new Marcato instance. So deploying Knak allowed us to, to put that consistent layer of how to build a landing page and build an email regardless of what system was going to actually deployed. Marketers only need to be trained once, and the ability to then deploy the approval framework and everything else was down the road. But the main thing for one truss was the capability of having that single panel and different systems in the background because marketers were starting to market different brands, so they would have to know how to do an email in HubSpot and had to do an email and Eloqua. So we didn’t wanna have to do that. One layer and then we can deploy it wherever it had to go.
[00:33:37-00:34:28] Pierce Ujjainwalla
Every year we do are, our email benchmark study, which is away from marketers to kind of be able to see how they measure up against their peers in terms of their open rates, click through it, unsubscribe. And one question we ask everybody is like how are you building emails and landing pages? And I think it’s still something like 70% of the, marketers around there are using templates to build their emails and landing pages. As someone with experience using a creation platform like Knak, what would you say to those marketers who are still using templates?
[00:34:29-00:35:47] Paul Wilson
They’re rigid, they are stifling to an extent. You know, you don’t have the capability to be creative. And the lack of the visual creativity being there means you’re going to generate common feeling content very repeatedly. And as content goes stale, engagement goes stale. I think the ability to have an adaptive framework where brand standards can be respected, but you can still have creativity and influence on what is shown is great. And I think that the simple isn’t always better. Having the capability and the flexibility that neck provides is something that I don’t think marketers really consider as a part of the brand experience. They think of it as whether it’s easy or hard for me to get the email out the door. What does that email look like? What is it going to feel like to receive? If it’s the same template over and over again, I’m not reading your email. So the ability to infuse that creativity is going to mean that you’re adapting, you’re changing. The experience is going to change too. It’s not always the same.
[00:35:48-00:36:15] Pierce Ujjainwalla
Another thing we hear a lot is marketers, you know, using test emails or annotated PDFs as collaboration for building out assets. Again, I’d love to just hear your perspective and what do you think marketer should be looking for when they’re looking to collaborate in 2023?
[00:36:16-00:37:21] Paul Wilson
Well, I think that’s, that’s kind of a loaded question. First I’m sure it’s different in every organization. Systems don’t force collaboration. Systems facilitate collaboration. So we will park the loaded question part of it depends on the organization. I think the capability of the collaboration and the way that it is incorporated into the discussion is what’s critical. And annotated PDF is extra work down the road. Because when you look at it and you see oh yeah, that’s a good thought. OK. I’ve gotta go in here, I’ve gotta do these things. Like you’re into, at least two platforms whereas if the commentary is adjacent, you can have more discussion, you can have it immediately, well to make it look like, you know, should it look like this, you can really test faster and develop those assets better, I’d say.
[00:37:22-00:37:38] Pierce Ujjainwalla
Then lastly, maybe just the touch on the brand. You mentioned trying to have that one brand experience. As someone who’s architecting the system to achieve that, how do you think about that and what’s important to you?
[00:37:39-00:39:09] Paul Wilson
Yeah, I mean, one trust has just gone through, you know, I alluded to the brands through acquisition. So we had a number of different brands. Those brands were bought into the one trust brand, sort of the end of last year. And then we refresh that one brand. So the, the ability to provide marketers with a set of drag and drop brand approve modules that ensures links are the right color, fonts are controlled the way they need to be. Colour pallets are accessible and available, means we can deploy a broader set of brand standard capabilities for marketers to choose layouts that they feel will be most engaging for the contact that they’re developing. It doesn’t have to be that every webinar invite looks exactly the same. Every piece of nurture contact looks the same. It allows for different teams to have different expressions of the brand that still fit within the brand guidelines. Without them needing to ask for my team to generate another temple in Marketo all. We can give them the ability to have that flexibility themselves.
[00:39:10-00:39:28] Pierce Ujjainwalla
When you enable self service as a marketing ops leader, what does that mean for the marketing ops team? For you, for the people on your team? What does that mean what does that give you?
[00:39:29-00:4053] Paul Wilson
There’s really two core things that I’ve seen and I’ve seen throughout the years. The first thing is it takes my team out of the business of moving the and from the end of this sentence down to the start of the next one. Because a lot of the marketer feedback is, is based in opinion. It’s, well I don’t really like the way that looks can we try this way? My team is trying to get email shipped, we don’t wanna be in the period moving business. We need marketers to be able to do that on their own. So that’s, that’s the first element. The second element is an offshoot of that is my team can then develop better enhance nurture capabilities. We can develop engines that are more adaptive to the behaviours we see, so that we can tell the marketers, actually you need a whole other nurture stream because there’s this group of people who are kind of falling off that are still engaging. But we can do more related to the email experience and if we aren’t busy making sure that the end moves from this down to there. Those are the two things.
[00:40:54-00:41:09] Pierce Ujjainwalla
Yeah it’s amazing. I feel like you, you were at the beginning of, of the CRM kind of boom if you call it that, the beginning of the marketing automation era.
[00:40:10-00:40:11] Paul Wilson
Let me turn my hearing aid up here.
[00:40:12-00:42:04] Pierce Ujjainwalla
And I really think the way that you’re setting your team up, your marketing ops team to focus on those high value activities that they can do, and empowering and delighting your marketers to do the marketing that they really want to do in the first place, it’s amazing to see and we’re really excited to be part of that. We have a session this week in a couple days with, with Don from Meta, which I’m looking forward to. And he talks a lot about delighting the marketer. And I think that, when you’re saying hey, they’re not having to send emails to move words around and they’re able to use the creativity, I think it’s showing that you’re deleting the marketers.
[00:42:05-42:44] Paul Wilson
Well, and we’re looking forward to delighting more than just a marketers. Because that brand experience goes beyond just a marketing team. So that’s been our core focus today, but we’re looking to extend the brand capability for other teams to self serve, to develop contaent using Knak so that the experience that you get with a one trust CSM, or experience from a sales person, or experience of the look and feel of a support case, all of that, we’re looking to extend those capabilities to ensure that the brand experiences consistent across all of those teams.
[00:42:45-00:42:51] Pierce Ujjainwalla
And for the people out there, why can you only do that with Knak?
[00:42:52-00:43:38] Paul Wilson
Assuming you watch this whole video, coming back to the content of the idea that, you know, we had multiple marketing automation platforms and we wanted to deploy one layer for marketers to develop their continent. There’s nothing stopping us from being sales people or CSM is developing the content. And it’s the same capability to ensure that they can be creative, but they can be creative within the guard rails of a brand. And then every email doesn’t look the same. And I think that enhancing the extent of brand experience beyond just marketing means that brand feels deeper when it feels the same across those other teams.
[00:43:39-00:43:51] Pierce Ujjainwalla
I’d love to move on to a rapid fire questions ask every guest so we can’t let you off the hook here. So the first one is email dead?
[00:43:52-00:43:53] Paul Wilson
[00:43:54-00:44:04] Pierce Ujjainwalla
Well, appears you know, so, I I mean I do. It’s a little cheesy but you know, the Ottawa story, the way that you’ve developed your business and the, the reputation of, you know not only the neck brand, but revenue post to be an authentic good company not only just to work for, but the experience customers. I mean, you gotta I gotta go I gotta give you props Leave it at that. What is one, we’re the Unsubscribed! podcast so what’s one marketing trend you would unsubscribe from?
[00:44:05-00:44:35] Paul Wilson
It’s not, I’m not gonna blame marketing, it’s the barrage of emails that I get from unknown people saying great things like, hey Paul, I see we’re in the same space. You breathe oxygen and I breathe oxygen. Can we have a time next Tuesday to like, turn on LinkedIn, I’m on LinkedIn, we should connect. That’s right unsubscribe.
[00:44:36-00:44:40] Pierce Ujjainwalla
Who is one person that you would Meijer in the business community and why?
[00:44:41-00:45:13] Paul Wilson
Huh. Well, pierce you know, it’s a little cheesy but you know, the Ottawa story, the way that you’ve developed your business and I, the reputation of, you know not only the Knak brand, but Revenue Pulse to be an authentic good company not only just to work for, but the experience for customers. I mean, I gotta give you props for that.
[00:45:15-00:45:22] Pierce Ujjainwalla
I’m flattered thank you. Who is one of the person that we should have on unsubscribe podcast?
[00:45:23-00:45:33] Paul Wilson
That’s a great one, I would say, I’m gonna embarrass myself by saying, I don’t know if you have or not had them, but Justin Norris.
[00:45:34-00:45:44] Pierce Ujjainwalla
I haven’t had Justin, but yes, I know Justin, and he was, you guys must have work together. I’d love to have Justin on.
[00:45:46-00:45:55] Paul Wilson
Now if you can arrange to take Justin to breakfast in Montreal and do the recording there, I guarantee he’ll be in.
[00:45:56-00:46:51] Pierce Ujjainwalla
Okay, I’ll try that out. Paul I’ve loved this conversation. We covered a lot of ground there, starting off with the Adobe summit which is where we are right now. Some of the highlights from the Keynote. We talked about AI and how people can get started, how they can think about that. However I can be trusted co-pilot. It was super interesting to hear just your career progression and all the amazing experiences you’ve had at Merketo and Adobe and salesforce. And I loved, I love hearing about how our customers use Knak and how it’s helping them at their companies. So thank you, for joining us. Thank you for being a visionary in the marketing ops space. It was awesome.
[00:46:51-00:46:58] Paul Wilson
Could talk about this all day long, this was great like I said it was long overdue.
[00:46:59-00:47:07] Pierce Ujjainwalla
Yeah, and this is our first episode ever in person and it’s way better than zoom, I gotta say that. Yeah it’s awesome, thanks so much, cheers.
[00:47:07-00:47:37] Pierce Ujjainwalla
Thanks for listening to Unsubscribed! A podcast created by Knak. If you enjoy this episode of Unsubscribed! be sure to subscribe to my podcast and leave a review on your favourite podcast player. If you have any feedback or wanna chat feel free to reach out to me on LinkedIn or follow me on Twitter @marketing_101. Cheers
Get ready to dive deep into the world of marketing technology as Pierce Ujjainwalla welcomes Paul Wilson to the Unsubscribed! Podcast. Paul has done everything when it comes to Marketing Operations from consulting to client relations at companies like Marketo, Adobe and Salesforce. And fun fact: he actually led the build of Adobe’s current Marketo instance!
Paul’s story is anything but linear. He’s an innovator with a thirst for knowledge and driving change. He’s been there since the early days of Customer Relationship Management (CRM) at Nortel, and played a key role in Adobe’s acquisition of Marketo.
Recorded live at Adobe Summit, this episode is packed with industry experts on the cutting edge of marketing and technology. You’ll learn how tech can supercharge efficiency, and discover the secrets to success for marketing teams who value freedom and creativity.
With his fresh perspective on advancing technology and his deep understanding of its original development Paul Wilson is the perfect guide for this journey. So join us for this must-watch episode and get ready to take your marketing game to the next level.
You can also follow Paul Wilson on LinkedIn.
Thanks for listening to Unsubscribed! – a podcast created by Knak. If you enjoyed this episode, please do subscribe and leave a review on your favourite podcast player. If you have any feedback, or want to chat, feel free to reach out to Pierce on LinkedIn or follow him on Twitter @marketing_101.
Co-Founder & CEO, Knak
Pierce is a career marketer who has lived in the marketing trenches at companies like IBM, SAP, NVIDIA, and Marketo. He launched Knak in 2015 as a platform designed to help Marketers simplify email creation. He is also the founder of Revenue Pulse, a marketing operations consultancy.