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Digital Skillscast

Jay Baer on Marketing Technology, People, and Talk Triggers

By Nate Riggs on May 19, 2017 9:05:13 AM |


Haven’t gotten enough of Oracle’s Modern Marketing Experience? Good, neither have we so we’re continuing the conversation for a second week. If you're new to the conversation, Oracle's MME is where marketing technologists flood to each year due to their passion and desire to bridge the digital skills gap. 

In last week's episode of the Digital Skillscast, we talked to four wonderful marketing, masterful women. You can always go back to last week’s episode, The Rise of Marketing Technologists: A Recap of Oracle's Modern Marketing Experience, and get glimpse on all of the different perspectives of marketing technology and the skills companies need their workforce to posses. 

We’re more one-on-one this week with Jay Baer. We’ve been following Jay since 2009 and his perspective on marketing, customer service, and the merger between the two functions. 

About Our Guest - Jay Baer, Digital Marketing and Online Customer Service Expert

Jay Baer Marketing Technology

Jay Baer is a renowned business strategist, inspirational keynote speaker and the New York Times bestselling author of five books who travels the world helping businesspeople gain and keep more customers.

Jay, Certified Speaking Professional, is The World's Most Inspirational Marketing and Customer Service Speaker. Jay shows you how to use technology as an unfair marketing and customer service advantage.

Jay Baer Modern Marketing Experience  Jay is the founder of Convince & Convert, a strategy  consulting firm that helps prominent companies  through the smart intersection of technology and  customer service. Convince & Convert is a member  of the Inc. 5000 list of Americas fastest-growing  private companies. Jay also hosts the Social Pros  podcast, a weekly show where he interviews real people doing real work in social media.


Jay combines his 23 years as a strategist for The United Nations, Cisco, Nike and more with his experiences as the founder of 5 multi-million dollar companies. He delivers programs that are the perfect blend of practical, real-world guidance and inspirational, big thinking.

This isn't the first time we've gotten the chance to talk to Jay. Back in 2013, we interviewed himforhis new book, Youtility. Youtility causes you to rethink everything you thought you knew about marketing and why smart marketing isn't about hype, it's about help. But that's another topic for another day.

Marketing Technology and People

We live in an age where every customer can become a mass media broadcaster, expanding the need for a merge of marketing and customer service. Jay opened up day three of Oracle’s MME with a hard truth - all marketers tell themselves the same lie.

This lie that we keep telling ourselves is that our customers are too busy to engage with us and our brand. The truth is that they aren’t too busy but we are the problem.

If a customer tells you that they are “too busy,” they are telling you that what you’re putting in front of them isn’t relevant. When you give someone exactly what they want at the exact right time in the exact way they prefer, they will engage.

So what is the one thing that we all keep doing to become more relevant? We buy more marketing technology. But this technology alone does not have a lot of value.

Relevancy Comes From Technology + People

Data doesn’t create the answer. Data has to be used to create context and pushing that information to the front lines so that someone can use that information to make a decision. Less about data, more about understanding.  

But doing that requires people; people to look at data and people to do something with that data.

As marketing technology keeps advancing, people are more important than ever. As host of a CMO Summit as part of Oracle’s Marketing Cloud, Jay was a part of a symposium that asked CMOs what kind of skills and roles do they need on their teams.

Answers were similar to “account-based marketers, marketing technologists, attribution specialists, Eloqua experts.”

Why is every CMO fixated on getting the right mix of skills, empathy, and creativity on their team? Because people power marketing. Period.

What's a Talk Trigger?

Jay has been working on a new program, Talk Triggers, and it’s all about how to turn your customers in volunteer marketers. Think about it. The best companies in the world do the least amount of marketing because they don’t have to! Their operations is their marketing.

Jay Baer Talk Triggers

"Talk Triggers are an unexpected experience that turns customers into volunteer marketers." 

Exceeding customer expectations in multiple ways creates involuntary word-of-mouth (WOM) and customers are compelled to tell others about your business. WOM is still the most effective, powerful, and least expensive form of marketing.

Most companies today are using marketing to try and create WOM. Now that’s just not how it’s done in Jay’s book. Use operations instead.

Don’t get us wrong - WOM can be negative, too. Just look at the airline industry.

To create a talk trigger, you have to have marketing, sales, operations, customer service, and legal and they all have to work together. But this is no easy feat.

Finding someone with a large follower base and sending them a package does not have the same effect - it’s only short term. Sure, they’ll take a picture, tweet it/instagram it, and their followers will see it. But what’s the long term impact? This isn’t a talk trigger.

These are are consistent and they happen every day, to every guest, and it’s not shock and awe. “What can we do all the time that people don’t expect?” is the question to answer to produce this.

How can you put this into practice?

1. Observe Your Customers

This may sound obvious but it really isn’t. Most marketers don’t spend that much time with customers so you have to leave your desk and spend time watching customers.

2 . Document Touch Points

Each time a customer intersects with the brand, find out which ones you can put a twist on and make it something that they don’t expect.

3 . Test It

Determine whether those “twists” work. You’ll find out fairly quickly because customers will instantly begin talking about it.

4.  Expand

If one of your “twists” is powerful enough to become a talk trigger, the only logical next step is to expand it company-wide.

If this is something that really interests you, Jay has an entire program for it.  Talk Triggers is a visceral, memorable program, and Jay has delivered it worldwide to B2B, B2C, government, small business, and corporate audiences.

I think I smell a new book by Jay on this. But because he wants everything to be 100% accurate and valid, he will research and make sure that it all adds up before he puts pen to paper.

Modern Marketing Experience 2018

So now we’ve covered Oracle’s MME for two weeks. Still not convinced you should come to Oracle’s MME 2018? Jay thinks you should and after three years of emceeing there, he could probably call himself an MME expert. He's a fan of where Oracle Marketing Cloud is headed, both in a philosophical sense and it’s application layers.

Even though marketing technology is the main focus of MME, there are conferences surrounding on sales, Ecommerce, service - you name it. How often do you get thousands of professionals from each department into one space?

Overlapping the different roles is reflective of the direction that business is heading. All of these facets are blending and MME is a reflection of that. Plus, you get to go to Vegas!  

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Nate Riggs

Written by Nate Riggs

Nate Riggs is the Founder and CEO of NR Media Group, a Certified HubSpot Partner and inbound consulting firm. He leads a team of experienced strategists, content marketers, creatives and technologists that help organizations deploy and use HubSpot’s marketing, sales, and service software to operate more efficiently and accelerate growth. Nate regularly presents keynotes and workshops at top industry conferences like INBOUND, Content Marketing World and Oracle’s Modern CX. In 2017, Nate was recognized by HubSpot for his contributions to the development of the HubSpot Education Partner Program. Nate regularly presents keynotes and workshops at top industry conferences like INBOUND, Content Marketing World and Oracle’s Modern CX. In 2017, Nate was recognized by HubSpot for his contributions to the development of the HubSpot Education Partner Program.