Episode 14 | Transcript

Jason Trout: Future of AI in Marketing, User Adoption, and Consulting

Anthony Lamot: Hi, and welcome to Heroes of Marketing Cloud. The show where we interview Salesforce Marketing Cloud experts. My name is Anthony Lamont and I’ll be your host for today. I’m the CEO and co-founder of DESelect. And today, I’ll interview Jason Trout who runs BoldRamp, a Salesforce Marketing Cloud consulting firm. Welcome. Hey, Jason. Welcome to the show.

Jason Trout: Thanks a lot. Glad to be here.

AL: Yeah, it’s a pleasure. Thank you for making the time just for the sake of, for our audience. Could you introduce yourself? What is it that you do?

JT: Yeah, sure. My name is Jason trout. I’m the principal at BoldRamp, and we are a consultancy that focuses on Salesforce Marketing Cloud. So we do a lot of new implementations, advisory, support, and ongoing campaign services for clients.

AL: And is there a specific… differentiator, a string, something that you’re really proud of? That BoldRamp does?

JT: I think we have a lot of experience. So, we have a lot of senior consultants that do a lot of good work. And, you know, I think sometimes you could run into, some consultancies that, you know, might have more junior consultants and don’t really invest in the people as much as they should to create quality work. And so, I think that’s something that we really focus on is ensuring that we’re working with top talent that is proven and can deliver great results for clients.

AL: For sure. And I’ll I’d love to dig deep into the top talent, but maybe before we get there, how did you end up doing this? How did BoldRamp came to be?

JT: Yeah, sure. So, you know, I’ve always been in some type of marketing or marketing technology role… but my Marketing Cloud journey started maybe in 2015 on the client side. And, you know, I think anyone that’s been in marketing in their entire career, they can probably relate that over time your role gets a little bit more technical. So, I found myself in a marketing technology group on the client side. And when I joined, we didn’t have Marketing Cloud, but I worked very closely with the marketing team and they had all of these dreams of personalized emails and automation and their platform just couldn’t get them there. So we spun up a project to replace it… and I led that implementation from the business side, working closely with an implementation partner. And after we were set up and I was more of the product owner of the platform, I set back and said, hey, I think I can do that consulting thing. And so, you know, looked into to that path and partner took a chance on me and I haven’t looked back. So I’ve been consulting, for Marketing Cloud projects since 2017. But then again, somewhere along the way, you know, I set back and said, I think I can do this thing on my own and finally stepped out to start BoldRamp in 2020. A little advice, for anyone looking, to do that, try not to do it right before the entire world shuts down with a global pandemic. Not the best timing. But here we are, and wouldn’t change a thing.

AL: Well, I’m sure that if you go through something like that at the start of your enterprise… or off your entrepreneurial journey, then it will certainly harden yourself. And if you’ve been able to go through a pandemic, then I’m sure you’re in good shape afterwards for anything else that the world control at you. What’s interesting to me is that, you originally were on the marketing side for someone like myself who have been for most of his career on the consulting side before starting DESelect. I can imagine you would have a lot of strength coming from the marketing side, like, you actually know what marketing is and how to do a campaign. Many consultants actually do not. But I can imagine there were also challenges. What we just say we’re some of those biggest challenges coming from the marketing side to the more technology side especially since we have, you may have people on the, you know, on the audience today who are considering such a move.

JT: Sure. You know, I think when I was on the client side in my marketing roles, you know, it, a, it was easy to surround myself with more technical folks that could do things that I couldn’t do. And, you kind of get comfortable with that because you don’t have to do it in consulting as, you know, things are thrown at you, right? You’re gonna have to learn to do things that you didn’t know how to do yesterday. And so for me, you know, depending on which partner that I worked for in the past or what project I’m on, I might have a technical resource and I might not. So it’s really being faced with those use cases where you have no choice. You’re gonna have to figure it out. And if you’re going to be successful as a consultant, there are roles, more strategy roles, right? But when you’re talking about Marketing Cloud very quickly, you’re gonna figure out that you’re gonna need to learn some, AMPScript, you’re gonna need to know how to write SQL to actually be impactful on a project. So that was difficult. But, you know, again, I feel like I didn’t just take the initiative and go learn it at night. What happened was I was faced with the requirement on projects. Then I stayed up on night figuring that out. So as being presented with challenges and just figuring it out along the way.

AL: Absolutely that part does seem very recognizable by the way I have very similar experiences in my initial Marketing Cloud experiences as I started to realize like, wow, this thing is super capable and flexible but highly technical and I sort of had to teach myself SQL on the fly which eventually led to, you know, desk being founded, you mentioned something interesting earlier about talent and how you like to work with very experienced talent. Now, it won’t come as a surprise to most of our listeners at finding great Marketing Cloud talent. It’s not that easy. What makes BoldRamp interesting for experienced talent. And, and I’ll just add one more thing we were just discussing before we started the interview that you work with Genna Matson, who’s a super star in my eyes and has been on this show. So, how do you find people like Genna to work with?

JT: Yeah. And that’s a, great example, of top talent that we work with, right? I think, to find the top talent, you know, it comes a lot of different ways of just being involved, in the ecosystem for a long time. You get to know people that may or may not be gonna be in, you know, on the market looking for a job, but you get to know the people to ask of, you know, that you trust, in their abilities, you trust them, to refer people to you as well. So, I think it’s just time in the ecosystem, is, the important thing there? And for BoldRamp, you know, we don’t have a whole lot of fulltime people, right? Our, our model right now is to work with contract consultants because that’s the way that we can attract top talent is because there there are great contract resources out there ones that we can’t afford right now, right? And so the way that we’re able to deliver great results for our clients is working with this top talent. Now, our, on the business side, our margins might be smaller but our impact is bigger and we’re getting those success stories because we’re able to put together this team that’s proven that can deliver great results for the clients.

AL: So, you’re optimizing for impact right now?

JT: 100 percent.

AL: It’s great. So throughout your career, what’s been the most interesting Marketing Cloud project, you’ve seen the most interesting, maybe what was really fascinating for you to do?

JT: Yeah. I think the most interesting Marketing Cloud project that I’ve worked on. I have to go back to one of my previous roles at another consultancy. We were working with a large payroll company and we, were working specifically with their small business units. So this business unit focused on small businesses anywhere from one employee to 10 employees. And what made it so unique is that before the introduction of an online experience and before the introduction of Marketing Cloud, this process for a small business owner was through 100 percent human, right? Calling the call center, you know, registering onboarding, payment. Everything was through the call center and what the project was to essentially do a complete 180, right? And make it 100 percent digital. Small business owners don’t have time to be on the phone over multiple weeks to, you know, buy a software like that, to do something in their business. So, thankfully, we had a, you know, incredibly capable client that really owned, the experience on the web. And what we did was stand up Marketing Cloud integrated with Sales Cloud to really facilitate all those milestones throughout, that experience, which is, you know, registering, and I qualification onboarding, entering all of your employees information, paying and ultimately running your first payroll all without talking to a human. So, that was truly transformational, for that business unit. And, you know, typically when we’re implementing Marketing Cloud, we’re replacing another Marketing Automation Platform, right? They’re jumping from one to the other. This is the only time in my career where there wasn’t one, right? So I really was starting from scratch and building the best experience. And, we didn’t have any legacy processes, to worry about how it’s going to translate to Marketing Cloud. We, we built it from scratch so that was certainly one of the more interesting projects.

AL: That’s fascinating. Although I imagine there must have been a huge part of education on your side too with regards to the organization if they had never done any marketing automation or even e-mail marketing whatsoever.

JT: Yeah. I think education, was a big part of it. But also what made this one unique is that I’ve never had a client more prepared for us to show up for our discovery, right? They, they had already thought about the online experience and had, you know, designs for us to walk us through the flow of what they envisioned the experience to look like and even had some journey designs prepared, right? Usually, we’re white that and it’s the first time they’ve really thought about what this journey is going to look like. And they’ve already given a shot. Now… they didn’t turn out the way that they designed them because, they weren’t familiar with Marketing Cloud and all the capabilities of Journey Builder for example. But it was an incredible start. So it was luckily, in this case, the client was, you know, one of the best to work with and was really prepared. So picking up a Marketing Cloud and running with it after we implemented, it was not gonna be a problem for them.

AL: That’s amazing. I’ve rarely heard something like that myself. I also think that even if they didn’t know the capability of Marketing Cloud and some of the initial journeys that were drafted could not be executed, I still believe that would have been very useful for that client just to think through the process if only because if you’ve done an exercise like that in a later year in a workshop with a consultant and you’ve done that like I said before, you just feel more involved to just basically pay more attention, get more feedback because you’ve already had to think about it. So I think that could be really good advice for any client really.

JT: Definitely. And I think, you know, it doesn’t matter what the platform is, some things that are not gonna change, right? The customer is gonna go through an experience. They’re gonna have certain milestones throughout that journey. So it doesn’t matter what Marketing Automation Platform we’re talking about. Some of that, can be thought through. And when you’re bringing that to the table, it just makes things happen a lot faster. And so then you’re talking about ultimately, what does that mean that time to value, is decreased, and you’re seeing value faster. And so now the consultants look, you know, like genus is when it was really your preparation.

AL: I think into value is maybe a great bridge to another thing. I wanted to discuss user adoption, what have you find to be the biggest challenges? And it could be a disk client, but even more generally speaking, throughout projects, what is typically a big challenge to user adoption of Marketing Cloud?

JT: Yeah. So I think in terms of adoption, a couple of things that come to mind are… data and people. So what I mean, my data is… Marketing Cloud can only do so much if you don’t have the right data, right? So I think in terms of adoption, it’s going to be slower if you’re not prepared with the data that you’re gonna need, to power Marketing Cloud. So let me give you an example. I, we, at one of my previous jobs… the delivery team. I was the solution architect on the team. We show up for on site discovery over a few days. And when we get to the data discussion, it’s clear that we’re going to integrate with Salesforce CRM. But when we started into that, we uncover that there are tons of initiatives to fix their data. They were in the middle of a Salesforce CRM implementation that was six months before they understood what the entire data model look like. So, it’s understanding what you’re gonna need to power Marketing Cloud and starting at the right time. And if you’re not going to have all of that in place when you’re starting a market on implementation, you know, it’s really about trade-offs, right? Are, are you going to do what you can today? And you’re going to rework later or are you going to delay the Marketing Cloud implementation and keep on doing what you’re doing until you’re ready to go? So I think that just not being organized and prepared for the data piece of the implementation slows that adoption and seeing value from the platform. And thing, I think… you know, clients need to invest in their people, right? Marketing Cloud is a big tool, robust tool, a flexible tool. But with that comes some complexity that your team properly hasn’t worked with, you know, as much, with other platforms. And so you’re gonna have to invest in your people. And the earlier you can do that, the better adoption is going to be. So that might be training your existing staff. It might be maybe you need a new hire someone that’s worked with Marketing Cloud before or understanding that maybe you have to invest in services from a partner like BoldRamp, or contract consultants to help you with that to get stood up faster, and get your team ready to go, to maintain it, and continue to optimize what you’re doing with Marketing Cloud.

AL: Yeah, absolutely. I don’t think I would recommend any customer to start with Marketing Cloud without involving a system integrator who knows what they’re doing just because as a customer, you’re only going to implement Marketing Cloud ones, but there’s so many nuances and details and decision design decisions you have to make that it’s gonna be hard to know what to do, right? Because you’ve never had to learning experience and never had the chance to fail. A system integrators have tried multiple things. And, and they’ll know. I also like how you put the tradeoff between especially essentially… getting started quickly, and maybe having a perfect architecture. I do think that if many, I do think many companies that are prone to fall into the trap of analysis paralysis here. It might be better to start with an MVP just because the faster I feel that the end users starting to get their hands on Marketing Cloud, the better they understand the actual capabilities. Yeah. And the more thoughtful and smart it can be with regards to the next to the road map.

JT: Yeah. No, I think, you know, the important thing you mentioned there is an MVP, right? It’s it’s starting somewhere making progress, getting your hands dirty in the tool and starting to use it, and see how it works. Again, that’s going to help with the adoption, right? But at some point it’s like, all right, this is, you know, we’re building out way too much in Marketing Cloud to where this is gonna be another four month project. Whenever we do have, the data in the places that we need it, and Marketing Cloud ready. So, yeah, I think it’s certainly, you know, a decision that has to be made, but you’re certainly right. What we don’t want is Marketing Cloud to be on the shelf for months and months, and then it’s you know, time for a contract renewal and they’re like, “well, it’s not valuable to me”. Well, yeah, because we’re not using it yet because we did not know how to get started.

AL: Yeah. And that happens more often than you might imagine. I know of one case where a Marketing Cloud was sitting on the shelf for more than a year and knowing the license cost that specific company we’re paying for it. That’s that’s a pity.

JT: Yeah. You know, it’s funny. I was just at an event in Dallas, and was talking to someone that works, on a client’s side and their Marketing Cloud was on the shelf for two years. Wow, just because, it was, yeah, it was behind some other initiatives and I didn’t ever get prioritized but, you know, thankfully, they were able, to actually start implementing and, you know, show some value before it. A, there was time to ask, for another signature to renew.

AL: Was that the higher-ed event by Salesforce?

JT: No, actually it was a North Dallas Salesforce meet-up group… that they have a monthly meeting, and I was their guest attendee last week.

AL: Fantastic. Yeah. We just started the user group in Austin for marketers specifically for Marketing Cloud. We’re probably gonna do it. Yeah. Thanks. We’re probably going to do a next event with the part of user group following Dreamforce. Yeah, those user groups, are fantastic, to share knowledge to share best practices, war stories and whatnot. By the way, I realized earlier, we’re showing around the phrase MVP. I guess most people in on, you know, on the show today, we’ll know what it is. But just in case MVP sends for Minimum Viable Product, it’s your first version of a product which would also be an implementation of Marketing Cloud… talking about, you know, maybe, in staying with that, a little bit about MVPs and expanding your Marketing Cloud over time. Something sounds like very interesting on your profile. Jason. Tell us about the Marketing Cloud Impact Score, please?

JT: Yeah, sure. So, the Marketing Cloud Impact Score is something we developed to try to focus where current clients of Salesforce Marketing Cloud know where to focus. I think what we see a lot is the need for… an audit for clients. And the reason is because, you know, maybe it’s there’s a new leader, you know, that is in charge of Marketing Cloud or maybe there’s been some turnover on the team and they’re not really sure what was built by the previous partner or what’s working, what’s not, why do they have this data? Why does it look like that? And so there’s a lot that they kind of just need help from someone with deep expertise in the platform to figure out for them, give them recommendations, provide a road map, of how to improve things, but that comes at a cost. And, and I think that there’s a way with the Marketing Cloud impact score. It’s essentially, you know, 20 questions going through asking you about various categories of Marketing Cloud, right? Your, your team, you know, your strategy, your customer experience, your utilization across Marketing Cloud. And what it does, is it gives you a or an overall score, but score is broken down by four categories and it’s very obvious where you’re going to need, some improvement, right? So, if you’re looking for improvement, that will give you a place, to say, look, this is probably something we need to focus on this quarter, these other areas. Sure. We, we can always improve something, but this is a place that we need to focus right now, to see improvement tomorrow.

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AL: Are there common themes you find amongst people who are taking this test and who have their impact core calculated? What are the common issues, you see?

JT: Yeah, I think, you know, one of the areas is data and, you know, data is vague, right? But some of the things that we run into and also when we’re doing these audits for clients is… way too many times their deliverability issues. And again, I think it’s just because there’s some turnover in the team and they haven’t really been trained properly on how to set up sendable Data Extensions. So then you have, you know, tons of duplicate subscribers and they’re not really monitoring the way that they should. And so there are a lot of clients out there, that are going through the motions and not getting the results that they need because they’re not able to uncover things like deliverability issues. So that’s one that we run into. And, and then of course, duplicate contacts, I ran into a client. We did an audit a couple of years ago and… I found an example, to be able to articulate my point around their data. The same individual was in all subscribers, 27 different times, same e-mail address, but 27 different subscriber keys. And so, you know, obviously someone was just not trained fully capable but just not trained in a way to actually, you know, import subscribers and those types of things. So there, there were some data issues but, you know, can you think about what that customer experience is? Like? I think three or four of them, were opted out. So there’s still 23 different times that this person could get an e-mail and trying to unsubscribe, well at that point, they’re not unsubscribing. They’re marking you a spam. And so that again hurts your deliverability. So, you know, certainly a lot of, a lot of data problems, that we run into. And, and, you know, duplicate subscribers, deliverability.

AL: That’s a crazy story. I think, the best way to think about this is Marketing Cloud is ultimately a marketing data-driven platform. So if the data is wrong or not just good enough, at least it’s not gonna go well here too though. I find it can be an analysis paralysis. Sometimes people are waiting for like the perfect data or the perfect data enrichment that is not always necessary. But whatever the case, I do appreciate how Salesforce has released some more data deletion features in the last couple of years, and I think they were only driven by data privacy regulations, but at least they also help reducing contact counts because of your built based on how many contacts you have. Of course, nonetheless, we find a lot of interest in for these like segments, the deduplication capabilities because you can quite advanced stuff when it comes to deduplication. The example you gave it for instance, is a duplicate based on e-mail address with the same subscriber key, but there’s all sorts of duplicates. You can also have duplicates with different keys, same e-mail address, or duplicates same person, different key, right? But different contexts like a phone number and an e-mail. Yeah, all that stuff. So it’s kind of fascinating how far it can go. So when someone says we got duplicates, I like to ask first, like, okay, what kind of duplicates? Give me some examples, right? Because you really have to dig a little deeper there.

JT: Yeah, definitely. And then it’s and then it’s figuring out, the source of that, right? Is it, is it another system or are you somehow introducing those into Marketing Cloud with your processes and, you know, fixing at the source?

AL: And that’s the biggest challenge I find, when the problem is really Upstream, it might, you know, maybe the data was already wrong in the data lake from which it originated and the marketing just have to solve it. And then you could expect, well, the data lake stuff has to fix it. But realistically especially in enterprise context, that might take years or never. And then I feel it’s more up to marketing to be able to what I like to call do data staging in the Marketing Cloud environment. And, and for that purpose, I think that Marketing Cloud does in itself wonderfully you have to be careful, you have to be sensible to governance. You can really screw yourself up if you’re not careful by making things too complex. But the flexibility does allow you to do some data magic in the marketing automation platform without having to be reliant on BI people data, you name it.

JT: Yeah, 100 percent. And I think that goes back to doing what you can do with Marketing Cloud, right? And, if, again that project to clean that up in some of their system, is not even on the board could be a year or two out, right? Well, you can’t sit around, and wait for that to happen. You have to take responsibility market cloud with what you have, and using those staging data, come up with the data that you’re actually going to use for your campaigns.

AL: Yeah. Interesting. I’ve even had a client that didn’t have consistent definitions and I think that it’s not really a unique problem to this client. I think this will happen to many clients like customer lifetime value, for instance, does it mean the same thing to the finance department, to the BI, people, to the data scientists, to the marketers to sales? Because maybe across the various systems that these user groups are using, the definitions might be slightly different to calculation, might be slightly different. And so you may have different numbers for the same customer, for instance, customer lifetime value. And I think you can have it for all kinds of things. So even getting data definitions straight across systems and teams, seems to be, very challenging sometimes.

JT: Definitely.

AL: Just taking a step back, looking a bit wider at the overall Marketing Cloud community. Jason, what do you think is the biggest challenge in the Marketing Cloud community that nobody is talking about?

JT: My, my answer might be different because of where I sit on the partner side. But I think one of the biggest challenges in the Marketing Cloud community from a partner perspective, is we’re seeing too many batched implementations. So, you know, we’re talking about earlier around time to value, right? Well, that’s certainly blowing that up and that’s not good for the ecosystem, right? You know, historically for the last, you know, five seven, eight years, it’s been a great place to be in terms of, you know, pay, and jobs. And I think in order, to keep it that way, we have to find ways to ensure that implementations are successful the first around. So, we, you know, as a partner, we clean up a lot of those messes. So, you know, I could just say, well, great, right. Keep keep on, you know, messing up those implementations because we’re getting work from it. But that’s short-sighted, right? We need more customers to see successful outcomes from their initial implementation partner because guess what they’re talking to their peers in the same industry, telling them if they’ve had a great experience with Marketing Cloud or if, you know, really they’re not seeing the value from it. So they’re going to move on or go back to their legacy platform or whatever. So that’s one of, the issues that I see. And, you know, I think that the responsibility of that, I think, you know, it’s shared across some partners and the client, right? So on the Salesforce side, you know, you a, you have your RVPs and their team of five to eight account executives, and, you know, they kind of have their favorites, right? They, they have, their, you know, three or four partners that they like to use. So, in this case, you know, Marketing Cloud partners that do that really well, maybe, but maybe they’re using them because they’re really easy to co, sell with or they’re really flexible when it comes to pricing or whatever. So they’re able to close deals faster. And I think more focus needs to be put on. Well, how are they delivering, right? What are the clients saying? Three or four months down the road? And when they’re hearing a trend that this partner isn’t delivering well, it’s time to cycle them out and replace them with another partner that can do some quality work. And then on the partner side, you know, I think partners need to make a choice if they’re going to stand up a Marketing Cloud practice. They really need to invest in it, invest in understanding the tool that is different from Salesforce investing in good talent, ensuring that talent stays trained up and you’re giving them opportunities, to grow and learn and really perfect their craft. The other choice is to say no, right? We say no to CRM projects. You know, you’re not gonna see us doing a field service lightning project anytime soon. And so if you’re not going to invest, in the practice properly and ensure that you’re delivering good results, then, you know, maybe it’s not the time, to take on Marketing Cloud work. And then lastly, for the client, the, you know, they’re getting recommendations from Salesforce as they should. They’re having conversations with partners as they should. But one thing that I don’t think, I see enough is the client saying, okay, partner, you show me, your slide of logos, right? And I recognize a lot of them that’s great. But, when were those projects, right? Were those seven years ago? Or was that last year? How many of those consultants are still around? And most importantly… you might be able to do great work. But who are the individual consultants that are gonna make up the team that are delivering for me, right? Absolutely. I don’t care if you’ve been successful in the past with these other consultants that are busy or have moved on, who’s working on my project? And sure, I don’t know everything about Marketing Cloud, but I’m gonna be able to have an opportunity to vet them to see if they have what it takes to lead a Marketing Cloud project for me?

AL: Absolutely. I was gonna add but you beat me to the punch, that interview, the consultant, the main consultant, like the seniors, especially the ones with the technical knowledge, the project management knowledge. I think that can be assumed the project manager involved, but the technical knowledge because that’s not gonna make the difference right… along there. You mentioned something kind of offhand which is actually really important for customers to understand. And I don’t think a lot of customers understand it. And that has to do with the difference between Salesforce CRM and the Marketing Cloud. And you even wrote a wonderful post about that some time ago. So I passed by. Could you just, you know, elaborate a little bit on what the difference is?

JT: It’s a completely different tech stack, right? Like it’s 100 percent different. Yeah. I think I said my post to… the most, the thing they have in most common, is the word Salesforce, right? We have to remember that Salesforce acquired Salesforce Marketing Cloud, right? It was called ExactTarget. And we’ve been talking about is Marketing Cloud going to be built on the Force.com platform for a decade, right? It hasn’t happened yet. Now, we saw some things that connections that, you know, make us think well, you know, okay, maybe the time is now, but it’s certainly hasn’t been for the past decade since they acquired ExactTarget. And it’s completely, different. I can’t count how many times we, we’ve done a project and, you know, Salesforce team members in the client side just cannot believe that we don’t have a sandbox right? There’s. So many differences and it takes the different skill as we go back to, you know, marketing, right? To have a team member that has experience, in just marketing, not necessarily technology to add to that as well. So they’re very different. And just as, I sure hope no one would hire me to do a CRM project. Same thing goes the other way. Let’s let’s ensure that we’re looking at consultants that have deep expertise in Marketing Cloud specifically.

Absolutely. Thanks for elaborating on Connections. It’s the Marketing Cloud event of the year. It’s the Dreamforce for marketers that’s how I like to think of it. What was your favorite moment of Connections 2023?

JT: Man, I’m not sure I can narrow it down to a moment but, you know, I think, what I enjoyed about connections this year, maybe more than other years is that, you know, being able to connect with, you know, a lot of the great people, right from my team to other partners, to clients and prospects, Salesforce folks, you know, a lot of us haven’t been going to a lot of events in the past few years, right? So, it was just great, to have time in person with a lot of folks. We, we cosponsored, a happy hour Wednesday at Connections and had had a great turnout and all went out for hot pot dinner the last way too long after that. So that’s really the value that I got out of it. And then, you know, it was great, to, you know, get a glimpse, of, you know, how AI, is really going to transform things with marketing, GPT sales, GPT service, everything GPT. So, that was exciting as well.

AL: Talking about GPT, where do you think that will go? I guess in the short run, we’ll probably see some more announcements from Salesforce and I’ve done a number of them at Connections and people can find it still a Salesforce live, to watch the presentations, introductions. But of course, we already know that many of these will be kind of aspirational or the maybe more long term. What do you think it might happen in the short term? What are your most excited about? And where do you think you will go in the long run?

JT: Yeah. So I think where we’ve seen generator AI impact marketers today is, you know, I think it’s more than content, but it’s mostly content, right? If you’re talking about, what you see marketers doing with ChatGPT or marketing specific tools like Jasper. It’s mostly around content generation and the way that, you know, we’re approaching it today is we know what the output is going to be, right? We’re asking, for that to be produced for us. We’re asking for, you know, write me this e-mail and it gives us an e-mail you know, given the context that we give it or create this image, right? Video now, music, but we know what the output is going to be. What I think is really exciting is, I think it’s going to shift a little bit the way that we’re communicating with generative AI, we’re not gonna say give me this thing that I know you’re gonna give me, but it’s here’s, my goal, right? So, for example, we, you know, we wanna increase conversion rates by one percent, right? Today, you will kind of dissect that all the parts involved in your e-mail or add copy or website or whatever, and see where you can make some incremental improvements, what campaigns you can stand up et cetera. Then you’re gonna go to generative AI and say, write this text, better give me options for a subject line, those types of things I think in the future, it’s going to be more of this is my goal generative AI tool. What do you got for me, right? So it’s going to be able to analyze all of e-mail content, your performance with, your e-mail campaigns, your ad copy, all the variations of your ads, be able to understand what images you’re using, what attributes you’re using in those images, look at your website content, look at all of our, all of your product descriptions and everything, and say, listen if we tweak these things, not really going to move the needle. But when we’re talking about conversions specifically, if you do XY and Z, we can meet or work where we think that we can meet that goal within the time frame, you gave me, right? So I think that’s exciting in terms of content. And, you know, I think also with segmentation, we saw a glimps of that with marketing gpt as well. It’s going to be more conversational segmentation, right? And again aspirational, right? Like, what is that gonna look? Like for the next couple of years, does that mean that we’ll never have to go to our it team or a more technical resource, to help us out with segments? Probably not. But I do think that the reliance on someone else to get a campaign stood up, is going, to decrease and you’re gonna be able to be empowered to do some of those things on your own with conversational segmentation. And where I think it gets really interesting, it’s not only conversational segmentation but, you know, then it’s going to be conversational commerce, right? So if you think about the way that we shop today, I need a present for my mom for her birthday, we might go that and come across a couple of blog posts, with recommendations and not gonna be relevant, to my mom. In fact, it might be optimized for affiliate dollars. Right? Then we might go to a commerce. I might go to Amazon and we’re searching for that product and filtering by color brand, et cetera. And the results may vary. But I think where it’s going is being able to go to a commerce site and saying, hey, this is a little bit about my mom. Her birthday is coming up. She’s she’s this old, she likes these types of experiences. She really hated this product I got her. This is what’s important to her and I think the results of that are going to be incredibly relevant and it’s going to really speed up, that transaction because of the relevancy.

AL: Yeah. I’ve heard a variation of that use case where rather than having a birthday reminder on the day itself, your personal AI assistant could actually remind you sufficiently time in advance to make some present suggestions, even, you know, figure out where to go get them and then let you order them even through the AI itself. It’s like, the next-level Facebook birthday reminder. I think I might actually have heard is an interview between Lex Fridman and Zuckerberg that was published not too long ago since obviously, they’re also going to integrate more and more of AI into the Facebook itself. As for AI for segmentation. Obviously, we’re super excited about that. We’re integrating GPT itself and will be able to deliver that capability in about a month from now. So actually by the time to introduce life that might be available already and it will be in the Marketing Cloud itself, not in the data cloud where sales force segmentation will take place, which is a somewhat different use case. Very cool. Jason. You’ve been giving a ton of great advice or a trade interview. Do you have any parting advice especially for Marketing Cloud newbies or marketers in the early stage of their Marketing Cloud journey?

JT: Yeah. I think the number one thing, you know, I pointed out a little bit earlier with my career shifting from, you know, the business side to a more technical role, but don’t be afraid to learn new things and just dive in and figure it out, right? And I think for a Marketing Cloud newbie, you know, you got to start with SQL and AMPScript, right? Find some use cases where you actually need to use both of those. And, you know, you’ll spend plenty of time on the stock exchange, but Google is your friend and you’re going, to figure it out along the way but just dig in and figure it out. And, and also don’t get left behind with generative AI, right? You know, it’s not going to replace you but, you know, another marketer that’s utilizing it will. So I think it’s just digging in there, not waiting for marketing GPT to be available but, you know, play around with ChatGPT, understand how to craft, a good prompt, right? Play around with Jasper to understand that. So you’re really understanding how to utilize what we’re all going to have to utilize in our jobs going forward.

AL: I think that’s very solid advice, Jason. Thank you so much for your time to go on the call, to share all this advice with customers and partners. I think it’s very sound. Yeah, thanks.

JT: Thanks so much for having me. It was fun.

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