Justin Sharaf, founder of marketing services and consulting company GIR Consulting, has put together a fantastic panel for the upcoming MarTech Conference. Together with Michelle Martinez (partner/co-founder, Seicho Syndicate), Carol Mendenhall (senior director, marketing operations, Thomson Reuters) and Paul Wilson (chief strategist, GTM Systems Inc.), he’ll be discussing how MOps should prepare their stacks and teams for customer experienced-based AI.

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The session — live at 4.25pm ET on Tuesday, March 19 (then available for streaming) — is designed to help you:

  • Follow actionable steps to prepare your customer data for use by AI technologies.
  • Bring real customer experience-based AI use cases to your leadership.
  • Identify key people resources and skills needed to manage AI technologies.
  • Intelligently research the right AI technologies for your company.

In advance of the session, we had some related questions for Justin.

Q: How far along should marketing operation teams already be in preparing to use AI and gen AI?

A: This is really dependent on whether legitimate use-cases have been discussed, whether business needs exist, and whether the leadership team has developed an AI strategy. Marketing Ops teams should always be keeping a pulse on with “what’s next” in MarTech, so from that perspective, most MOps teams should have a basic understanding of what’s generally possible with AI.

For more mature or innovative companies, the MOps teams will need to be more prepared. If you aren’t sure where you should be, ask your leadership team how important AI is to them, and then act accordingly. It’s okay if you aren’t far along in your AI journey — you aren’t alone!

Q: Can you give us one example of a customer experience-based use case that you find exciting?

A: Live chat support is an area that I’ve always felt like never lived up to its potential. I’ve rarely had good experiences with live chat support. Chatting with a live rep is generally slow and the reps are often not knowledgeable enough. Chatting with a pre-programmed business rules-based bot often results in frustration. Having an AI-powered live chat agent seems like it will drastically improve companies’ ability to provide fast and comprehensive support, leading to more satisfied customers.

Q: From text creation to coding, AI has so many potential uses. What’s the first step in researching the technologies that might be useful to your company?

A: The first step is to align with your marketing team’s strategic priorities. Marketing Ops teams should research tools and tech that aligns with those priorities. If you aren’t focused with your efforts, you will drive yourself crazy with the endless possibilities.

Q: Do you expect to see a lot of inhouse training in how to use AI or will that generally need to be outsourced?

A: I think initially, outsourcing may be a more popular and successful approach to AI in order to achieve short-term wins. But long-term, I anticipate more companies will expect their teams to develop in-house expertise and then supplement with outsourcing.

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