Review of #MarTech, the Inaugural Marketing Technology Conference

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There is something about inaugural conferences that is especially wonderful. Back in 2006, when Chris Brogan and I started PodCamp, the first event brought people from all over the world to learn more about the nascent field of podcasting. The best and the brightest showed up for that first PodCamp, from Steve Garfield to CC Chapman to Jeff Pulver… the list was endless, and many of the people at that first event have gone on to great things. Subsequent PodCamps had plenty of special memories and great friendships, but there was something extra in that first event.

#MarTech Boston 2014

Such was the feeling at the first MarTech conference in Boston. MarTech attracted people from all over the world who had an interest in marketing technology, faced marketing technology challenges, or as was the case for me, were marketing technologists looking for their tribe.

The sign of an amazing conference, especially for a speaker, is one in which you get much more than you give. Lots of people will say that they picked up “a nugget or two”, but that rarely justifies the time, expense, and opportunity cost of going to an event. The best conferences are ones where you walk out with armfuls of new stuff to investigate, new things to study, new ideas to try out – and that was what MarTech was this week. To get just a hint of what was shared at the conference, take a read through my tweets from it. Oh, apologies if you got flooded by me this week – Twitter was my notepad for taking notes from the event.

  • Food for thought: innovation is inversely proportional to your company’s appetite for risk. #martech
  • “The only true omni-channel in marketing is the consumer. Marketing has to catch up.” @inspiremartech #MarTech
  • Brand managers and leaders need to be technologists as well. Data is a core skill. – @inspiremartech #MarTech
  • Marketing: right brain. Technology: left brain. #MarTech needs people strong in BOTH brains. Our greatest challenge is very rare talent.
  • #MarTech @lauramclellan: What will happen to marketing when we have to deal with business, people, and things (Internet of Things)?
  • 91% of sales revenue is coming through marketing channels. 46% of marketers have their own P&L. @lauramclellan #MarTech
  • Most progressive companies sell marketing data to best customers, to big data companies. 87% sell/share. @lauramclellan #MarTech
  • CMO spends more on IT than CIO. Predicted 2017, we have reached that in 2014, 3 years early. @lauramclellan #MarTech
  • Marketing CMOs now own the whole customer experience in the most progressive companies, from product to retention. @lauramclellan #MarTech
  • 38% of CEOs @Gartner interviewed have shifted investment priorities to digital marketing. @lauramclellan #MarTech
  • Hottest hybrid role in 3-4 years: strategic alliances manager. Technologist, strategist, marketer. @lauramclellan #marTech
  • 80% of large companies now have marketing technologists (or equivalent). @gartner @lauramclellan #MarTech
  • CMTs will own/lead 6 innovation roles: responder, counselor, navigator, scholar, conductor, pollinator. #MarTech @lauramclellan
  • Marketing flashpoints: holistic customer experience, customer-centric digital commerce, Internet of Things. #MarTech @lauramclellan
  • You will have to scrap your eCommerce platform – was written by operations and IT, not customer-focused. #MarTech @lauramclellan
  • What makes a marketing technologist? Curiosity. Leadership. Creativity. Risk-taker. Can start as tech or marketer. @lauramclellan #MarTech
  • Strategy is not a goal. Strategy is a method to achieve a goal. @draab #MarTech
  • Challenge people using the word strategy to match the equation: method + goal = strategy. @draab #MarTech
  • Food for thought: Strategy is about what you say no to. Leadership is about who you say no to. #MarTech
  • Brands are in the customers’ minds. Strategies are in the company’s mind. @draab #MarTech
  • 2 obstacles to marketing change in organizations: accountability and complacency. @paulroetzer #MarTech
  • On average, marketers depend on data for only 11% of customer-focused decisions. @ceb_news #MarTech
  • Success is the greatest impediment to marketing progress and innovation. @paulroetzer Risk aversion rampant. #MarTech
  • The best marketers can think on a strategic level, then execute on a tactical level & get hands dirty. @paulroetzer #MarTech
  • Only 1 in top 10 marketing programs REQUIRE a digital marketing course. Universities aren’t making marketing technologists. #MarTech
  • Universities reward stability, not change or innovation. @markwschaefer via @paulroetzer #MarTech
  • PR20/20 screens candidates w/marketing automation. If you don’t check out all of their site, no interview. @paulroetzer #MarTech
  • #MarTech @paulroetzer demoing impressive custom marketing operations management system built in @Podio.
  • #MarTech @kaykas says the vast majority of CEOs have come from the sales organization, for good or ill.
  • The biggest farce in marketing and software is believing we know what customers want before we build it. @kaykas #MarTech
  • The best storytellers may have high math aptitudes because you have to be great to craft stories from data. #martech @kaykas
  • Great feedback: Describe. Analyze. Evaluate. Foundation of agile marketing processes. @kaykas #MarTech
  • 3A’s for finding marketing technologists: aptitude, altitude, attitude. Smart. Strategic. Motivatved. @erica_seidel #MarTech
  • Scout/Evaluate/Sell are HR equivalents to Lead Gen, Lead Qual, and Closing. @erica_seidel #MarTech
  • 3% of hires came from postings on LinkedIn. Direct outreach works much better than advertising. Scout your talent. @erica_seidel #MarTech
  • Marketing technologists have to be scouted and identified by skills, proactively. They won’t find you. #MarTech @erica_seidel
  • Hiring is selling, especially when talent is scarce. Craft your selling message w/as much effort as product sales. #MarTech @erica_seidel
  • Marketing is leading the Big Data charge @scotiabank in financial services, pushing organizations. #MarTech
  • #MarTech plays the middleware, connecting IT and marketing to generate real results. @janehiscock
  • RT @teenord: Everyone has an opinion and they’re all backed by data. #bigdatarisk #martech
  • If gov’t outlaws third party cookies, a lot of marketers will suddenly be without data. #MarTech @teedubya
  • Build your own cloud rooted in effective tag management. @teedubya #MarTech
  • #MarTech: Amara’s law, we overestimate short-term impacts of tech & underestimate long-term impact. @chiefmartec
  • #MarTech What’s needed to change the world: a power system and a control system. Power + structure. @erikbryn
  • Industrial Revolution complemented humans w/physical power. Machine Revolution substitutes humans w/mental power. #MarTech @erikbryn
  • Industrial machines need people to scale. Information age machines need fewer people. @ErikBryn #MarTech Structural unemployment long-term.
  • #MarTech Driverless trucks for long-haul trucking is where the $$$ is, @erikbryn:
  • In 10 years, talking to our machines will be the default mode of interaction. @erikbryn #MarTech
  • How valuable is a press release? Machines can write them flawlessly now, without human editing. @erikbryn #MarTech #PR
  • IBM Watson got temporarily fouled up in natural language processing when it read Urban Dictionary. @erikbryn #MarTech
  • #IBM Watson evolved much faster than humans to win Jeopardy. Total unstructured data. @erikbryn #MarTech
  • #MarTech machine learning now being used in HR to automate hiring, more accurate than humans for good fits. @erikbryn
  • RT @ValaAfshar: Everything in this 1991 Radio Shack flyer is now in your smartphone! #MarTech
  • #MarTech more and more humans will be left behind as machines advance. #TheGreatDecoupling @erikbryn
  • Food for thought: the only way humans will keep up with machines is to augment ourselves with machines. #MarTech
  • #MarTech winners and losers: high skilled workers win. mid and low skill workers lose and are left behind. @erikbryn
  • #MarTech most hurt in wages and employment are middle-skill workers. Service jobs OK so far at low income end. @erikbryn
  • #MarTech Winners and losers: owners of capital win far more than laborers, driven by technology & robots. @erikbryn
  • #MarTech winners and losers: Superstars vs. everyone else. Mega-influencers will win more and more in the machine age. @erikbryn
  • #MarTech Free, perfect, and instant makes incredibly high barriers to entry. Early winners tend to remain winners in digital age. @erikbryn
  • #MarTech Thomas Piketty’s excellent book Capital in the 21st Century is free on Amazon Prime Unlimited:
  • #MarTech Computing power evolution: Today, smartphone chess programs can beat human grandmasters. @erikbryn
  • #MarTech The grand challenge is to race with machines, not against them, playing to human & machine strengths. @erikbryn
  • #MarTech Humans still good at creativity, interpersonal skills w/other humans, fine motor control. Remaining jobs will be there. @erikbryn
  • #MarTech 4Es of Marketing: Experience, Everywhere, Evangelism, Exchange, to replace 4Ps. @sheldon_tm
  • #MarTech Where do software & marketing ideas come from? Theft, Method, Intuition. Reusing ideas, frameworks, guessing. @sheldon_tm
  • #MarTech: CFO: What happens if people leave us after investing in their training? CEO: What happens if we don’t and they stay? @sheldon_tm
  • #MarTech What Sapient Nitro teaches at its Marketing Technologist University. @sheldon_tm
  • #MarTech Create comb-shaped teams of T-Shaped people and you have a marketing A-Team. @sheldon_tm
  • Top performers not used to struggling in new territory, #MarTech university was an emotional shock to them. @sheldon_tm
  • The #MarTech CMTO lives at the intersection of storytelling and technology. @sheldon_tm
  • “Learn is NEVER in the past tense” – love that tagline from @sheldon_tm #MarTech
  • #MarTech Core message to marketing technology leaders (and would-be): BUILD something with your own hands/mind.
  • #MarTech We must retrain marketers for a post-broadcast world. Marketing technology is that bridge. @sheldon_tm
  • #MarTech fastest pace of technology change has been last 2-3 years. Customers more powerful than ever. @sherylpattek
  • #MarTech Attention is now THE scarce resource. 20% Y-o-Y decreases in adult attention span. Currently 8 sec. @sherylpattek
  • #MarTech “Brand is the emotional aftertaste of a series of experiences.” @zefrank Customers define brand by memory & experience.
  • #MarTech: Fast + Easy + Relevant = Convenience. Helps to define disruption. @sherylpattek
  • RT @dharmesh: When it comes to the customer journey, companies should be the friendly tour guide, not the cranky bus driver. #martech
  • #MarTech CMOs are largely not technological and need help understanding & improving technology impact on P&L.
  • #MarTech @McKinsey says companies that use analytics extensively see 23x boosts in customer acquisition. @jasonheller
  • “Culture eats strategy for breakfast.” – Peter Drucker @jasonheller #MarTech
  • #MarTech Core principles of growth hacking: user-get-users. Fast onboarding. Big platforms. Product hooks. @SeanEllis
  • #MarTech Going on stage in 5 minutes. Get the entire eBook for my talk here:
  • #MarTech Want to share algorithmic thinking tweets? I wrote some starter ones for you, just tap/click to share:
  • #MarTech People + Process + Data + Technology = Marketing Capability @shawngoodin
  • Thanks @chiefmartec and @MarTechConf for having me at #MarTech! eBook & slides for my talk are here:
  • #MarTech Capability scorecards/metrics let you understand what’s most broken in your marketing stack. @shawngoodin
  • #MarTech “Marchitecture” – fun neologism for marketing technology stack. @shawngoodin

If you’d like to get my slides and talk from the conference, it’s available here:


I look forward to hopefully being at the next MarTech conference, and I would encourage you to register and sign up for it as well, if you have any interest in marketing technology, if you want to know more about it or improve your own skills.

I would like to thank Scott Brinker and the team at Third Door Media for putting together such an incredible event and having me speak at it.

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