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The Marketing Expert Series

February 14th, 2018

When I first saw Rand Fishkin’s Whiteboard Friday Series, I was enthralled. Here was the CEO of one of the best tech companies in the world, breaking down the most complex SEO strategies, and doing it in a way that could be understood by any viewer. It’s something that could only be done through video, where Rand’s personality and candor are on full display, his knowledge is apparent, plus his storytelling is easy to follow.

At TwentyThree, we wanted to know exactly how he and why he built this, or the back story on Scott Brinker’s experience with the MarTech landscape. We had these questions - and many more - for a number of other successful marketers in the world. And that’s why we created the Marketing Expert Series.

The Marketing Expert Series is a number of full-length video interviews with thought-leaders like Scott Brinker, Rand, Ann Handley, Kipp Bodnar and other influencers that share insight to guide all marketers in their day-to-day jobs. (You can subscribe here to receive weekly updates about new episodes)

Our first episode is from HubSpot’s Scott Brinker, VP Platform Ecosystem and editor at ChiefMarTech. Below, you’ll find a transcript of highlights from our interview with Scott, and you can watch the full video here:

“So I think, two things are happening. One, the scope of marketing continues to expand. There are so many new touchpoints in marketing as conversational, interfaces, video and it continues to grow. That is one of the reasons why you see this innovation happening in the marketing ecosystem. But the other reason is that we’re living in the software world, where anyone can now build software and get it deployed on the cloud infrastructure. Before, the barriers to get ideas out to the world were quite high. Now they are incredibly low. So this wonderful combination of the demand in marketing, defining new ways to connect and engage with people and on the supply side, for people who wanna build stuff, having the option and access to do that. That’s an amazing time!”

(3:45) “There is no company now that can do it all. It’s just too much happening and if you are trying to do it all - you do none of it well. So I think that the real vision for platforms in this space, as HubSpot and others, is to ask: “What are the right foundational pieces to have?”. The things that really allow maximum amount of community to revolve around it and then how do you open it up in a way to make sure that all the people who have innovative ideas could tap in.”

(4.38) “Marketers are not interested in technology for technology's sake. They’re interested in this technology through how does it help them reach and engage their customers better.”

(5:18) “Marketers need to understand technology to be able to do the best that they can. But the danger you want to avoid is that you don’t want to get so sucked up into the technology that you lose site of “How are we creating customer experience that really differentiates ourselves, that really speaks to our brand.” It is not only about the latest shiny object, it’s about looking at what are the capabilities we need to deliver that our customers expect.”

(5:57) “Marketers should do a better job at helping customers discover what are the right tools for what they are trying to accomplish. Because it is not about the entire crazy landscape, it’s about what are the options out there, that would really be the best fit for me based on my particular business, the sorts of things I am doing and the other pieces I am using.”

(6:55) “I think this is a really exciting time, because there is so much happening in video, as this ability of integrating video as not something static, but as something that is really integrated into the experience.”

(7:18) “There is this richness to video as you’re capturing a wonderful combination of language and visuals, and story, and narrative. Now, we finally have the technology at the level where it’s so democratised, that any business can find ways to engage its audience through these video narratives and visual stories. Thus, why wouldn’t you do this?”

(10:13) “I believe that opportunities for platforms in this space is to really help make sense of this crazy MarTech landscape.”

(11:20) “I love marketing technology, but at the end of the day - that isn’t really the story.  It isn’t really about to what particular tools you are being connected or the architecture you’re putting, I mean it’s a piece, but it’s a small piece. What’s really transforming marketing is the way you see these teams that are integrating technical and marketing talent and rethinking what it means to be a marketer in this world.”

(11:49) “Almost all stories that we are focusing on in MarTech are not really about the “Tech”, they are about the “Mar”. It’s about how do you leverage that marketing on top of those technologies.”

(12:00) “There are three pillars to the MarTech: marketing, technology and management. And the third pillar to me is the most important. Because at the end of the day, these tools change the way we can work. In fact, to get the value out of them, we have to operate differently, we can’t be in a way where we have a long, yearly marketing plan and very hierarchical organization. Because all these tools are designed to have rapid feedback loops and this experimentation, and this ability to gradually adapt to what we learn. Thus to take advantage of it, you have to rethink how marketing is operating in the organization and while it is the greatest challenge, it is also where the greatest opportunity is.”