“The key to us was to build a tool from the ground up that sees data as food that can fuel our insights.”
1. Tell us about your role at CONCURED and how you got here?
I’m proud to be joining CONCURED as Chief Marketing Officer. I’ve been in sales, marketing and leadership positions for 25 years and have always believed that marketing must focus on the needs of customers to be more effective. With the advent of AI, CONCURED is taking advantage of today’s cutting-edge technology to help brands achieve the dream of a truly intelligent content strategy.
2. What is it that you found lacking in the Marketing technology environment that pushed you to start a company of your own?
So much of the current marketing technology out there today is about pushing data or content around from one place to another. Some of it might have some analytics on top. But there’s a huge gap in the number of intelligent, AI-driven marketing solutions. CONCURED’s AI can perform a content audit in seconds, and intelligently show you share of voice, make content and distribution recommendations, and drive the entire content strategy. That’s why so many brands are jumping on board. Once you see the tool, you want to have it.
After spending years guiding content strategy on the agency side, and then working in the US at the start of the AI in marketing movement, Tom was able to see into the future of what AI could make possible, while also being very aware of the challenges that content marketers face every day. CONCURED was build to examine every variable within content, using AI and data science to help content creators understand not just what works but why things work.
By understanding why content works, they can adapt, learn and always create content based on knowing what will resonate with their audience, so they know exactly what strategy to take to engage and prove ROI.
3. How is the MarTech industry different from when you first started?
The main change is its size; the number of marketing technology firms has ballooned from dozens to thousands. The industry is intensely competitive, with most of us chasing the same companies and budgets. In order to stand out, marketing technology solutions have to be useful, effective, easy-to-use, and add real value in terms of informing marketing strategy.
4. Given the changing dynamic of marketing analytics and AI centric solution handling, where do you see CONCURED fitting in the ecosystem?
Content is king. So many organizations struggle with simply knowing what they have, does it work, where are the gaps? CONCURED fits squarely in the content category as the world’s first AI for marketers to help them create an informed content strategy that meets today’s complicated customer journey.
5. How do you differentiate CONCURED from the competition?
CONCURED uses true AI. Lots of companies these days say AI, but are not really using it in a way that is needed or helps the customer. We have built our own product and IP, and developed it to use the latest AI capabilities to make a content marketer’s life easier and more productive. CONCURED is one of the few tools that exists in marketing that seeks to explain why content works, helping our clients to learn and grow their strategies.
In that regard we are fortunate that we really don’t have much competition. We are breaking new ground, and while we know that this tool is needed, we are attracting the pioneers right now. Mass adoption may be a few months away as our ideas and ideals becomes more widespread.
6. What changes are you majorly concentrating on to enhance and plug-in a more actionable customer interaction and communication model?
We’re currently using our own AI to define the content strategy that allows us to deliver the content our customers need, in the channels where they are most likely to consume content. We’re taking our own medicine and seeing real value. As users of our own tool, we’re also better able to improve on the features and user experiences that marketers demand.
The other thing I’m seriously passionate about is helping to make our customers the hero of our story, ensuring their success will drive our own. We can’t succeed without the innovativeness and drive of our userbase!
7. What tools would you recommend to CEOs and CMOs as a Sales Hack in 2018?
LinkedIn is one of the most powerful tools on the planet. It’s a platform for creating content, sharing content, and interacting with the right people. It is NOT an appropriate platform for cold outreach emails, or blindly connecting with people you don’t know so you can send them a pitch. My advice to every CEO and sales person is to update your profile to 100% completeness; share your thoughts regularly, and consistently engage with your audience.
8. What do you think are the new standards of tech integrations? How do you manage the dire data complexities that come along with tech integrations?
CONCURED was built to integrate with the huge variety of tools that exist in an Enterprise marketers stack. Our platform is using AI to make sense of huge volumes of big data from almost any source and make sense of it for a content marketer. The key to us was to build a tool from the ground up that sees data as food that can fuel our insights. CONCURED works as a plug and play tool out of the box, but also enjoys munching on the clients own private data to add a layer of contextual insight that changes the game for them. It can really help steal a march on competitions in terms of what really drives content ROI and how to manipulate it.
9 .Which startups in the MarTech and AdTech industries are you keenly following?
I’m following a bunch of companies in our MarTech space, and the innovation on show is outstanding. Zapier is a superb tool for automating and connecting different applications, and Leadpages is a great utility for developing landing pages. Ceros is an amazing company for interactive content experiences, Lumen5 for video, DivvyHQ in terms of scheduling… there are too many to name them all!
10. Elaborate on your best digital transformation content marketing campaign. How did you measure the performance among your audience?
Our most successful digital transformation campaign was with Nationwide. Nationwide saw a 23% increase in engagement inside of just 3 months, saved 45 hours per month researching and creating content and reported that “CONCURED provides our team with actionable, data-driven insight that enable us to validate our ideas and no longer rely on guesswork. Their data allows us to see exactly what topics we should focus on to engage our audience. This helps us to justify our decisions and gain buy-in from others across the business”.
11. What book are you currently reading?
I’m reading The Culture Code by William Coyle. I’m fascinated by culture and teams, and include Creatvity, Inc., the story of Pixar’s success and the Netflix SlideShare on culture as must-reads for all executives.
12. One piece of advice you always follow irrespective of circumstances
What’s the lesson? The ups and downs we all experience in life are equal teachers. I try to always stop for a moment and ask: “what’s the lesson?” and “what can I learn from this?” so I can grow and hopefully not repeat my mistakes.