“CMOs should have a clear understanding of the business challenges they are trying to solve and/or the customer value they are trying to deliver and use these factors to invest in prescriptive intelligence platforms. “
On Marketing Technology
MTS: Tell us about your role and how you got here? What inspired you to be part of an AI-based marketing intelligence company?
My role at DemandJump is a hybrid between Chief Revenue Officer, Chief Marketing Officer, and Advisor. In fact, I became an investor in DemandJump after I had been involved with the business for 9 months because I believe so strongly in the need they are fulfilling in the marketplace – specifically – how to drive qualified traffic in an increasingly cluttered competitive environment. That’s what inspired me to get involved in the first place. There are so many marketing tech tools out there today, but more than 90% of them are focused on extracting value from customers or prospects a brand has already identified. Very few tools (and no AI platforms) are focused on the acquisition of new, highly-converting customers, across all digital channels. That’s the DemandJump “sweet spot”.
MTS: What are the foundational tenets of the Traffic Cloud™? How does it help marketers turn into 21st century winners?
DemandJump customers have a “bird’s-eye” view into what their competitors are doing and how/where they are acquiring new customers. It’s like having a seat at your competitors’ executive committee meeting when their CMO’s recap what is working or not, and lay out where they will invest next. I wish I had that intelligence when I was CMO at Walmart, Prudential, etc.!
With a view to where qualified prospects are 3 steps before they reach your competition, today’s marketers can step in front of that traffic and redirect those prospects to their brand, driving incremental revenue market share. That’s how they become 21st century winners.
MTS: What are the major challenges for businesses in leveraging data science and human intelligence?
One challenge is that businesses need to understand that different math is required to solve different business problems. One size algorithm does not “fit all”. Finding the talented mathematicians and data scientists that can isolate specific business issues and then craft the appropriate AI solutions is difficult.
Another thing to consider: Many experts agree that AI will largely augment, rather than replace, human labor in a symbiotic way, where algorithms learn implicitly from our actions and incrementally take over the redundant aspects of our work. This dream of semi-supervised learning, where humans provide some minimal amount of feedback and training to an algorithmic agent, has been rather illusive in real-world applications. This is because the feedback loops we have today are extremely manual. The challenge for businesses, going forward will be to find innovative ways to capture feedback and other metadata to solve optimization challenges in a way that feels effortless.
MTS: How should CMOs determine the baseline to choose and invest in prescriptive intelligence platforms?
- CMOs should be careful to ensure they have a clear understanding of the business challenge they are trying to solve and/or the customer value they are trying to deliver, and use these factors as the baseline to evaluate and invest in prescriptive intelligence platforms.
- Before choosing to invest in prescriptive intelligence platforms, CMOs should have a solid understanding of the reliability of their existing data sets, BI analysis and predictive modeling, as this is often the foundation upon which prescriptive intelligence platforms build. Where predictive modeling takes explanatory variables from past occurrences and exploits them to predict the previously unknown future, prescriptive intelligence platforms typically apply algorithms to those predictive models and suggest decision options and outcomes that will deliver an optimal result, based on the business parameters specified.
- CMOs should be looking for prescriptive intelligence platforms with the following characteristics:
- Cross-channel data integration and analysis
- Ability to ingest external data sources and assimilate those data sets into their analytics
- 3rd party data sets, such as competitive intelligence, consumer cohorts, market data, etc.
- Ability to integrate with external platforms or tools
- Ability to deliver real-time (or, near real-time) insights, so businesses can adjust as quickly as market dynamics shift
- Simple, efficient user interface, including drill down capabilities and customizable dashboards
- Efficient data export functionality
- Purposeful artificial intelligence – meaning the right math applied to the right problems, not just AI for the sake of AI
MTS: Do you feel that institutional barriers are the biggest hurdle for intelligence analysts to turn into decision-making leaders?
Every organization and every intelligence analyst is different. However, institutional and organizational barriers can present hurdles for these analysts to progress to leadership positions. If these barriers exist in a company, my experience has been that the hurdles result from a broad lack of understanding or appreciation for the importance of data and analytics in informing decision making and strategy. In today’s global marketplace, regardless of your industry vertical, businesses that are able to efficiently and effectively leverage data to solve customer problems, or to deliver customer value, will be the ones that succeed and continue to grow. More and more, executive leadership teams and Boards are recognizing this.
MTS: What startups are you watching/keen on right now?
- The Upshot (NY Times)
- Viv Lab
MTS: What tools does your marketing stack consist of in 2017?
DemandJump Traffic Cloud (Yes! We “drink our own champagne”), automation, email, competitive intelligence, video, SMS, collaboration, DMP, analytics, CRM and advertising platforms.
MTS: Would you tell us about your standout digital campaign? (Who was your target audience and how did you measure success?)
As a startup, we’ve spent the last 18 months ensuring our solution is truly aligned with the needs of our market. As such, we are just now gearing up to launch our digital campaigns.
That said, we recently leveraged our DemandJump insights to assist one of our customers with their display/remarketing efforts. The client was underperforming on display and remarketing ads. By overlaying a DemandJump recommended placement whitelist on their agency’s established whitelist, and only serving ads on the sites we recommended, this retailer increased revenue per click by 31%, increased revenue per visitor by 38%, improved order per click by 99% and improved orders per visitor by 109%.
MTS: How do you prepare for an AI-centric world as a marketing leader?
- Foster a DNA for change throughout the enterprise
- Dedicate resources for innovation and learning
- Build collaboration tools and processes
- Form contingencies that allow scale
- Automate redundant tasks, streamline processes and free up time for experimentation
- Nurture innovators and hire for gaps
- Balance institutional knowledge with external points of view
This Is How I Work
MTS: One word that best describes how you work.
MTS: What apps/software/tools can’t you live without?
- Starbucks App
- Hotels Tonight App
- IFTTT App
MTS: What’s your smartest work related shortcut or productivity hack?
Establishing “Rules of Engagement” with my team as relates to email. Start the subject with “HOT” if you need me to read and respond as quickly as possible, (and keep your ask concise and to the point); use “ACTION” at the beginning of the subject line if you need me to do something or make a decision in order for you to keep work moving forward; and use FYI at the start of the subject if I don’t necessarily need to read or respond right away – or at all.
These guidelines not only keep my team focused and my inbox safe from unnecessary email strings – it also causes my team to thoughtfully consider the importance/urgency of their messages, whom should be on copy, and how they should clearly frame their “ask” in the subject line and the body of the email. It’s refreshing not to receive numerous email strings with subject lines that may have been relevant to the original message 3 days ago, but have nothing to do with the latest send.
Then of course, I set filters to prioritize the HOT emails at the top of my inbox, and so on.
MTS: What are you currently reading? (What do you read, and how do you consume information?)
I just started reading The Digital Matrix, by Venkat Venkatraman. I usually read a book every week or so. Most often I read them when I’m on the treadmill. I subscribe to numerous blogs and feeds following business, the stock markets, AI and private equity / investing newsletters. There are also retail and CPG industry trades I subscribe to and read mostly on planes. And of course, I can’t live without MarTech.
MTS: What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?
“Ask more questions than you answer.”
MTS: Thank you Julie! That was fun and hope to see you back on MarTech Series soon.
Executive leader with a passion for building world class brands and teams. Successful entrepreneur and Board Member. Passionate about Exponential Organizations, health & wellness.
Senior Marketing Executive – proficient in industry-leading, integrated Marketing, eCommerce, Merchandising, Operations, Digital Media, CRM, Branding and Social Engagement programs that reach diverse consumer segments in both mature and emerging markets. Extensive marketing, merchandising and operational expertise with a track record for leveraging innovation & technology to drive new customer acquisition, retention, and upsell that delivers long term shareholder value.
Driver of revenue and market share growth through transformational business development, rebranding, marketing planning, media optimization, product innovation and creating seamless online/offline consumer experiences. Passionate builder and leader of people. Senior marketing executive honored to have led award-winning marketing organizations ranging from 10 – 300 professionals.
The way companies find new customers online has changed. DemandJump is leading the way.
By focusing on the entire digital ecosystem, DemandJump gives you increased visibility on where to focus your online marketing spend to drive the greatest revenue growth. With custom artificial intelligence and sophisticated algorithmic attribution models built right into our platform, we analyze the network effects of user traffic flow between sites up to three degrees of separation from you or your competitors to identify prescriptive strategies across channels. This gives you an unbiased view of your greatest, often untapped, sources of traffic and revenue across all digital channels. With this, you can now decide how to invest your time and budget with purpose and precision to maximize ROI. DemandJump proves #whywhere matters for our customers.
The MTS Martech Interview Series is a fun Q&A style chat which we really enjoy doing with martech leaders. With inspiration from Lifehacker’s How I work interviews, the MarTech Series Interviews follows a two part format On Marketing Technology, and This Is How I Work. The format was chosen because when we decided to start an interview series with the biggest and brightest minds in martech – we wanted to get insight into two areas … one – their ideas on marketing tech and two – insights into the philosophy and methods that make these leaders tick.