The Role AI & GPT Play in Today’s B2B Marketing
Episode Notes & Resources
On this episode we’re welcoming back to the “Salesforce Simplified” podcast Vende Digital CEO & Chief Strategist Paul Slack to talk about the relationship between AI and marketing, what we saw and worked in 2023 (and what did not work), and what marketers should be thinking about as we jump into 2024 and beyond.
Paul’s AI Resources:
Speaker 1: This is “Salesforce Simplified,” the podcast from Ad Victoriam Solutions. Here’s your host, Mike Boyle.
Mike Boyle: Welcome everyone. I am so excited for today’s episode because we are welcoming back to the “Salesforce Simplified” podcast for the third time. Our good buddy Vende Digital CEO and Chief Strategist, Paul Slack to talk about the relationship between AI and marketing. What we saw worked in 2023 and what didn’t work and what marketers should be thinking about as we jump into 2024 and beyond. And before we officially say hello to Paul, let me remind you a little bit about him. If you have not heard about Paul before on this podcast. Paul has more than 20 years of digital marketing experience. And as I mentioned, he is the founder and CEO of Vende Digital, which is a B2B digital agency which is based in a Dallas, Texas suburb called Carrollton. And he’s also the author of “Social Rules” and “Social Selling Rules.” Paul has been a most sought-after speaker as well in the digital marketing space. He’s been featured in Success magazine, on Fox Radio, and big stage events and Paul has literally trained tens of thousands of business leaders across the country on the best ways to leverage digital marketing for their businesses. All that means is that Paul is our go-to guy to talk about many things in the B2B marketing space and all the things that we’ll be discussing today in AI and marketing. Paul has his finger on the pulse.
Hello, Paul. Welcome back to the “Salesforce Simplified” podcast…
Paul Slack: Hey, Mike. Super excited to be here. And, can’t believe this is number three, but always love coming on the show.
Mike Boyle: Yeah, we love having you. I think it’s kind of going to become a thing where we get you toward the end of the year and we can just kind of talk about B2B marketing and how the year was and what to look ahead. Paul, no secret when we changed the calendar in 2023, and you and I have talked about this, off the podcast before the floodgates just opened for AI and we just got inundated and that’s all it’s been since January. And I think for the better. So let’s kind of just pick your brain a little bit about where things are and what to look forward to.
How AI Transformed B2B Marketing in 2023
Mike Boyle: I’d like to start the conversation with how has AI transformed B2B marketing practices in this year of 2023.
Paul Slack: Mike, it’s interesting because I’m guessing we recorded an episode about this time last year. At that point in time, ChatGPT was, either just coming out or had just been announced and I can’t remember exactly when we recorded our show, but I know it was right about this time last year.
Mike Boyle: It was.
Paul Slack: And I don’t think any of us fully understood what generative AI was going to mean to marketing and to just set the table. AI has been around for a long time, and many of the tools like Salesforce® and other tools that are out there have been leveraging AI to help marketers and to help sales reps, and to help organizations get more done. And so a lot of people think, oh, my gosh, AI happened last year when ChatGPT came on the scene. Well, really, that was generative AI. That was what gave us the ability to talk to AI like we were talking to a human. But the tools that we love and use every single day, they’ve been using AI for a long time now. We as marketers and sales reps and those that know trying to drive our businesses forward, we have this new tool, this intelligent robot that we can use to help us do our jobs. Because of that, Mike, it’s been an incredible disruptor. And so I think there’s been this sense of panic like, oh, my gosh, my plate is already incredibly full. I’m spinning 25 plates and now I’ve got to go figure out how to spend this 26th plate. And I’ve got my boss asking me, how are we going to leverage AI and what’s our AI strategy? And so I think that people have went through this panic phase, and then it seems like every day when you log into LinkedIn or turn on your computer, you’re learning about 25 new AI tools that just happened over the last 24 hours. So we’re getting an avalanche with a lot of things, and I know that that can feel a little scary. And so as we go through what we’re going to talk about today, I’m sure we’ll try to help everybody kind of get to the basics and what really matters, but for sure, it’s been a disruptor. But I want you to think about AI as a way of helping you get more done because, at the end of the day, that’s what we’re really all trying to do. There’s things that we wish we could do if we had more time. And AI, when it’s deployed the right way, Mike will really give us the opportunity to automate some things, to get things done faster, which will allow us to go into spaces where really humans are much more equipped to do things than we could ever expect a robot to do. So think about how do we leverage AI in 2023 and really rolling into 24. It’s really about ideation, content creation, doing data analysis and how do we personalize, really create unique experiences for our customers. And those are some of the big things that we can do with AI.
Mike Boyle: I’m just curious, how many AI/GPT newsletters have you signed up for this year? How many are you personally getting?
Paul Slack: I know I feel like I open up my inbox every day and I got 25 latest tips from AI. And you log into LinkedIn and man, I’ll tell you, when I log into LinkedIn, there’s like half of the posts that I see are some carousel on some new prompt idea or ways to get more out of ChatGPT, for sure.
Mike Boyle: Talk to me, Paul, about some of the notable use cases maybe you’ve come across for generative AI in B2B.
Paul Slack: B2B marketing this year, some of the simple ones. And I get asked all the time, how do I get started? And, one of the things I always recommend is pick one of the tools. ChatGPT, obviously, is a no-brainer. I’m a big fan, by the way. Go and spend the $20 a month and get the Plus version, but start inviting it to everything that you do. Really get into just understanding the tool, what it does, how it uses your data, and then just invite it to your day-to-day lives. Find those friction points and things that are frustrating or hard or maybe not the kind of work you enjoy doing but have to do. and see how AI can help you with that. But specifically in marketing, some of the things we’re really enjoying leveraging AI is in, being a writing assistant. So it’s very helpful in content ideation. It’s very helpful in thinking through and outlining content. It’s incredibly useful in, repurposing content or reformatting content, which is great. Now, the one thing that I will preface this, and you’ll probably hear me say this a couple of times on the podcast today, is AI does not replace the marketer at all. It’s a tool. just like a chainsaw is a tool. Mike. A chainsaw is a very productive thing if it’s in the right hands. But I wouldn’t want to give a two-year-old access to a chainsaw. And so, it’s a great tool. It’s not going to replace us. so we don’t want to go to AI and ask it to write a blog for us, for example, and then take that content and just throw it up on our website and feel like we’ve checked that box. but it is definitely a great writing assistant. If we do the right seasoning and the right training, then we’re going to get good. You know the old adage, Mike, garbage in, garbage out. So if we put good things in, we can expect good things out. But just remember, it’s still not finished. You got to have a human being kind of get it across the finish line. It’s also just incredibly good at personalizing content and really great at helping you understand the voice of the customer. One of the things we’re really enjoying a lot about AI is we can take customer input. So that could be think of like reviews on G two or other types of review platforms or even transcripts, of calls that you’re having, with, your customer, either in customer success or your sales reps, transcripts. And you can put a ton of data into these AI tools, Mike, and then start asking it questions like, tell me what my customer cares about, what are their pain points, help me build A persona that represents my customer, and then you can bring that persona, if you will, to all the content creation, that you’re doing. So, in the old days, prior to old days, like twelve months ago, Mike. Right. Those are the old days. Before we had generative AI, we kind of had to assume we understood the voice of the customer and we could do research and things like that. But now we’ve got this AI assistant that’s been trained on the voice of the customer, and then it can provide input and make sure that the content that we’re creating is very personalized for our personas, and really speaks their language. Another thing that you can do is make it become like a sales assistant. So I know you asked the question about marketing, but there’s a lot of great ways that you can use generative AI on the sales side. One of the things I know, I’m also the sales guy for Vende Digital. We’re a small digital agency. But one of the things I love to do is take the transcripts of my discovery calls, and then when I’m putting together a proposal, I’ll actually upload that into Generative AI and then upload my proposal and then ask it if there’s any gaps. Is there anything that I’m missing in my proposal that this person would like to hear about? And then I get really good feedback back. So that helps me as a salesperson, really hone in and build a proposal that’s going to meet the needs of my customer and really speak their language. And then the last thing that we’re doing, Mike, that’s really been helpful, is just auditing, our content in our website so we can literally copy and paste, landing page content, put that into generative AI, even drop competitors landing page content, put that in AI, season the AI with our personas, and then ask it, hey, which page is better? And then what’s missing? If you were the persona and you’re trying to make a decision about the topic that’s on this landing page, what’s missing? What other information would you need? And that helps you not only understand how your page is better or worse than your competition, but now you can really tune it to what your persona is looking for. So those are some really big ones that we’re having some great success with.
Mike Boyle: As you talk about content preparation, there’s a whole other cottage industry that’s popped up, and it’s very true. You need to train the AI to understand what it is that you’re asking. I’m specifically talking about prompts. You need to learn how to prompt the know to get the best results, know, talk to the, you know, what your business is, what you do, what your goals are, and that really know what you get back, from your AI query, if you will.
Paul Slack: Yeah, absolutely.