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MozCon 2023: The Initial Agenda

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MozCon 2023: The Initial Agenda

The big event is just about four months out and we’re excited to give you a preview of what you can expect to hear on stage this August!

From fresh faces joining us for the first time to fan favorites making a return appearance, our speaker lineup this year is 🔥. Topics range from AI & future-proofing your strategies, technical SEO, content marketing, and way more — all with an emphasis on practitioners sharing tactical advice and real-world stories of how they’ve moved the needle (and how you can, too).

Once again, you’ve got two incredible ways to join us for Mozcon, a fully immersive in-person experience in Seattle, or through our livestream only passes which will be broadcast live from the Seattle stage. Can’t join us in person or for the livestream? We’ve got you covered with an option to pre-purchase access to the post-event video recording bundle so you can catch the sessions when your schedule permits.

Grab your MozCon ticket today and get ready for the Future of Search!

Register for MozCon

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The Emcees

We have three incredibly entertaining MozCon Emcees this year to guide you through each day and keep the show rolling along:

Cheryl Draper
Senior Growth Marketing Manager | Moz

Melissa Rae Brown
Learning Team Manager | Moz

Ola King
User Researcher | Moz

The Speakers + Agenda

Feast your eyes on the lineup of talks being presented this year:

Amanda Jordan

Director of Digital Strategy | RicketyRoo

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Build Better backlinks for Local Brands

As with everything in local SEO, backlinks are just a little different. What do local pack rankers typically have in common? To answer that question, we’ve collected backlink data across several home services businesses across the USA and categorized them. We’ll share our findings, and how you can build better backlinks for local clients! By the end of this session, you’ll be able to list the different types of backlinks local businesses typically have, identify which link types correlate with stronger rankings, and most importantly, how to apply this to your clients!

Andi Jarvis

Strategy Director | Eximo Marketing

Back to the Future: What Lessons From Marketing History Can Tell Us About the Future

“Marketing has changed more in the last decade than at any time in history.” There’s a blog published that features a version of this line roughly every 0.5 seconds* – but does anyone stop to consider if it’s accurate? Andi will demonstrate how marketing and audiences aren’t really changing, and that the future of marketing is much the same as the past. Why is this important? Because people, not robots, sit at the heart of marketing. By the end of this talk, you’ll understand how you get your customers back to the center of what you do, and how that will turbocharge your marketing efforts. Strap yourself into the MozCon time machine for a journey Back to the Future.

*Stats entirely made up… much like the results used in most content marketing efforts.

Azeem Ahmad

Digital Marketing Lead | ASSA ABLOY

Beyond the written word: Future-proofing your content strategy by leveraging multimedia formats.

In today’s rapidly changing digital world, marketers must go beyond just written content to engage with their target audience in the right way. Consumers, including marketers themselves, now expect content that is visually appealing, easily digestible, and interactive. If you want to ensure the longevity of your content strategy and also be more adaptable to the changing landscape digitally, you’ll need to leverage multimedia formats such as video, audio, and more. This talk will explore the benefits of incorporating these formats into your marketing strategy, including tips on how to create engaging content that resonates with your audience and boosts conversions/sales. By the end of this session, you’ll have a clear understanding of how to future-proof your content strategy and stay ahead of the competition.

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Brie E. Anderson

Owner | BEAST Analytics

From Fear to Forward Motion: Navigating the Future of Analytics with Confidence

What the heck even is GA4 and why are you being forced to use it? Get ready to explore the rapidly changing landscape of analytics! In this talk, we will explore the future of analytics and provide a step-by-step guide to adjusting to the big changes that lie ahead. We will discuss how to move from fear and resistance to embracing the transformation that is already taking place. You will leave with a blueprint for success that will help you future-proof your analytics strategy and unlock new possibilities for growth and innovation.

Carrie Rose

Founder | Rise at Seven

Dominating TikTok, YouTube, Pinterest and Amazon SERPS As Consumer Behavior Changes

As search volumes rapidly change and users use new platforms such as TikTok for search, how should SEOs respond? Carrie will share her process of dominating all SERPS – not just Google! Discover how SEO fits within the user journey, and the role content can play for both offsite and onsite content, generating links and search demand. You’ll learn how advertising and SEO overlap, and what we can learn from award-winning advertising as part of search strategies..

Chris Long

VP of Marketing | Go Fish Digital

Why SEOs Need To Start Playing Offense Instead of Defense

In an industry overloaded with data, tools, algorithm changes, and a constantly evolving landscape, it’s tough to know what to prioritize. Often, this leads SEO initiatives and strategies to be more reactive instead of proactive. In this session, Chris will show you how to shift to an offensive SEO mindset. This will help you better prioritize key initiatives, get stakeholder buy-in, and navigate a successful long-term SEO strategy. You’ll leave this session understanding how to identify new markets to break into, leverage SEO data around key recommendations, utilize keyword segmentation to better inform your SEO strategy, and build a framework for setting up SEO experiments.

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Crystal Carter

Head of SEO Communications | Wix

Views on Views of Video SEO

Fifty-four percent of consumers report that they’d like to see more videos from brands, and video SERPs account for an average of 20% of untapped keyword opportunities. There’s never been a better time to improve your video SEO! From on-page embeds, to SERP visibility, and even in your backlink profile, video is an unrivaled tool for adding value to your content and improving your website’s SEO outcomes. In this talk, Crystal explores what matters on the Google SERP, and what leads to success when optimizing the videos on your site.

Daniel Waisberg

Search Advocate | Google

Search Data at Scale

Are you using Search data effectively and at scale? In this presentation, Google Search Advocate Daniel Waisberg will present the data available today, and demonstrate the best methods of using Search Console bulk exports for scaling your SEO efforts. After this talk, you’ll understand the challenges of using data to steer your strategy, and get the scoop on analyzing and visualizing this data to drive your product decisions!

Duane Brown

Founder & Head of Strategy | Take Some Risk Inc.

Hiring The Perfect Agency: How To Avoid Getting Burned

A 2022 Upwork study shows that 39% of the U.S. workforce freelances. Just think about how many more ad agencies exist today, as compared to 2019. You’d think that hiring would be easier with all of these options, but nothing could be further from the truth. Hiring is a valuable skill, and we are going to give you the skills to hire that next agency. By the end of this session, you’ll be able to identify agencies that are the best fit for your brand, effectively interview prospects, avoid pricing ambiguity and pitfalls, partake in productive onboarding, and look for meaningful results and metrics. Let’s get you the skills to hire better next time!

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Jackie Chu

SEO Lead, Intelligence | Uber

SEO Co-Conspirators: Navigating Complex Systems

SEOs have self-reported that the #1 challenge to their SEO program being successful is getting changes implemented. Additionally, we’re often faced with constantly having to prove the value of SEO as a channel. In this talk, Jackie will focus on how you can source and uncover allies, enlist your coworkers, and successfully navigate the political landscape to get your project prioritized.

Jason Dodge

Founder & CEO | Black Truck Media + Marketing

Rethink Your Industry Pages – They’re Not What You Think

B2B marketers, and SEOs alike, are all too quick to create industry-specific landing pages for every single vertical we serve. In reality, these pages have very little relevance to what your customers are actually searching for, or what it is that you actually do in that space – limiting the reach and missing out on potential customers who would benefit from your solutions. Are you ready to reimagine your entire industry vertical proposition? Jason will explain the ins and outs of industry pages, their role in content marketing, and – more importantly – how optimizing content around the pain points and direct needs of your customers is more relevant now in B2B marketing than ever before.

Jes Scholz

Group CMO | Ringier

Mind the Gap: Bridging Generational Differences in SEO

To keep up with the ever-evolving needs of users, Google is transforming from being a search engine to an ecosystem of experiences that often reach people before they need to search. Discover, Google Lens, YouTube Shorts, and Bard are just a few examples of this shift towards richer, more engaging surfaces. By the end of this talk, you’ll be able to leverage these new visibility platforms to improve organic performance and future-proof your brand.

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Lidia Infante

Senior SEO Manager | Sanity

Headless SEO: I’m Sorry, But This Is Happening

Headless CMSes are on the rise, and headless SEO is quickly becoming an essential skill for SEOs. In this talk, Lidia will explain the concept of content modeling with RAL examples, which lies at the core of headless CMSes. By the end of this presentation, you will have a firm grasp of the limitations and advantages of headless SEO, and possess a checklist of 7 implementations you need to request from your development team.

Lily Ray

Senior Director, SEO & Head of Organic Research | Amsive Digital

Google’s Just Not That Into You: Intent Switches During Core Updates

If your website has been negatively impacted by a Google core update, it is common to immediately assume that there is something wrong with your site. However, there are many other factors that could explain why rankings changed during a core update, and understanding these are key to improving performance. You’ll walk away from this session understanding how Google core updates work, how and why the results change, how to respond to being hit by an update, and how to future-proof your site.

Miracle Inameti-Archibong

SEO Lead (Insurance) | MoneySuperMarket Group

How to Use Brand SEO to Future-Proof Your Online Visibility

With digital ad spending projected to reach $701 billion in 2023, generic CTR dropping by 12% between position 1 and 2, the increase in no-click searches (+60%), and the constant rolling out of updates, it’s more important than ever to build a sustainable online brand presence to algorithm-proof your traffic. This talk will explore how SEOs can contribute to brand building, and how it can help future-proof your online visibility.

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Noah Learner

Director of Innovation | Sterling Sky

Down the Mountain

Struggling to find your place in SEO? Want to break through to the next level, but feel like you’ve hit the wall? Join Noah Learner on the journey “Down the Mountain”, as he shares his evergreen framework for optimizing your career in any market. This framework – built on craft, people, critical thinking skills, and synthesizing data – will help you now and in the future, as you look for what’s next. You’ll learn a repeatable process and specific skills that will help you accelerate your career and make you impossible to ignore.

Dr. Pete Meyers

Marketing Scientist | Moz

Lower Your Shields: The Borg Are Here

From ChatGPT to Bing’s Prometheus to Google’s Bard, AI (specifically, Large Language Models) is disrupting search as we know it. We can fight the inevitable, or we can put these tools to work. Learn where AI chat excels, where it fails (sometimes spectacularly), and how to use these tools to not only keep your SEO job, but also level-up your SEO career.

Ross Simmonds

CEO & Founder | Foundation Marketing

The Evolution of Content & The Future of Our Industry

Is it all over? Is the world as we knew it a wrap? With the rise of AI – is it realistic to assume that the world of SEO and content will stay the same? Or should we all start dusting off our resumes to try something new? In this presentation, Ross is going to share a blend of both the realities of how AI can be incorporated into our work (maybe to give us additional runway) and answer the question as to whether or not AI is actually coming for our jobs and what we can do to ensure that we’re ahead of the curve when it comes to using these tools, embracing the technology and finding edges amidst rapid change.

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Tom Anthony

CTO | Search Pilot

Entities Are the Past: Search Is Going Multidimensional

For years, “keywords” were everything in search, and then came the rise of ‘the entity’. Tom believes that the time of the entity will soon be over, and will explain how Deep Learning ‘latent spaces’ are highlighting that entities were 1-dimensional thinking. The future of search is going to be about context, and it isn’t far off. You’ll walk away from this session with a new technique that will replace keyword research so that you can prepare, and ideally, get ahead of the competition.

Tom Capper

Senior Search Scientist | Moz

The SERP is Dead, Long Live The SERP

SEOs have complained for many years now, that the SERP just isn’t what it used to be. We yearn for the simpler days of 10 blue links. But Google is changing for a reason, and SEOs have reason to be invested in its survival. Besides, not all SERP features are bad news. In this talk, Tom will look at Google’s direction, and the strategic imperatives that are forcing its hand. You’ll walk away with a plan to unearth happiness (and organic revenue) in the brave new world.

Wil Reynolds

CEO & VP of Innovation | Seer Interactive

To Be Announced


We hope you’re as excited as we are for August 7th and 8th to hurry up and get here. And again, if you haven’t grabbed your ticket yet, we’ve got your back. Early Bird pricing is on through May 31st.

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Ecommerce evolution: Blurring the lines between B2B and B2C

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Ecommerce evolution: Blurring the lines between B2B and B2C

Understanding convergence 

B2B and B2C ecommerce are two distinct models of online selling. B2B ecommerce is between businesses, such as wholesalers, distributors, and manufacturers. B2C ecommerce refers to transactions between businesses like retailers and consumer brands, directly to individual shoppers. 

However, in recent years, the boundaries between these two models have started to fade. This is known as the convergence between B2B and B2C ecommerce and how they are becoming more similar and integrated. 

Source: White Paper: The evolution of the B2B Consumer Buyer (ClientPoint, Jan 2024)

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What’s driving this change? 

Ever increasing customer expectations  

Customers today expect the same level of convenience, speed, and personalization in their B2B transactions as they do in their B2C interactions. B2B buyers are increasingly influenced by their B2C experiences. They want research, compare, and purchase products online, seamlessly transitioning between devices and channels.  They also prefer to research and purchase online, using multiple devices and channels.

Forrester, 68% of buyers prefer to research on their own, online . Customers today expect the same level of convenience, speed, and personalization in their B2B transactions as they do in their B2C interactions. B2B buyers are increasingly influenced by their B2C experiences. They want research, compare, and purchase products online, seamlessly transitioning between devices and channels.  They also prefer to research and purchase online, using multiple devices and channels

Technology and omnichannel strategies

Technology enables B2B and B2C ecommerce platforms to offer more features and functionalities, such as mobile optimization, chatbots, AI, and augmented reality. Omnichannel strategies allow B2B and B2C ecommerce businesses to provide a seamless and consistent customer experience across different touchpoints, such as websites, social media, email, and physical stores. 

However, with every great leap forward comes its own set of challenges. The convergence of B2B and B2C markets means increased competition.  Businesses now not only have to compete with their traditional rivals, but also with new entrants and disruptors from different sectors. For example, Amazon Business, a B2B ecommerce platform, has become a major threat to many B2B ecommerce businesses, as it offers a wide range of products, low prices, and fast delivery

“Amazon Business has proven that B2B ecommerce can leverage popular B2C-like functionality” argues Joe Albrecht, CEO / Managing Partner, Xngage. . With features like Subscribe-and-Save (auto-replenishment), one-click buying, and curated assortments by job role or work location, they make it easy for B2B buyers to go to their website and never leave. Plus, with exceptional customer service and promotional incentives like Amazon Business Prime Days, they have created a reinforcing loyalty loop.

And yet, according to Barron’s, Amazon Business is only expected to capture 1.5% of the $5.7 Trillion addressable business market by 2025. If other B2B companies can truly become digital-first organizations, they can compete and win in this fragmented space, too.” 

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If other B2B companies can truly become digital-first organizations, they can also compete and win in this fragmented space

Joe Albrecht
CEO/Managing Partner, XNGAGE

Increasing complexity 

Another challenge is the increased complexity and cost of managing a converging ecommerce business. Businesses have to deal with different customer segments, requirements, and expectations, which may require different strategies, processes, and systems. For instance, B2B ecommerce businesses may have to handle more complex transactions, such as bulk orders, contract negotiations, and invoicing, while B2C ecommerce businesses may have to handle more customer service, returns, and loyalty programs. Moreover, B2B and B2C ecommerce businesses must invest in technology and infrastructure to support their convergence efforts, which may increase their operational and maintenance costs. 

How to win

Here are a few ways companies can get ahead of the game:

Adopt B2C-like features in B2B platforms

User-friendly design, easy navigation, product reviews, personalization, recommendations, and ratings can help B2B ecommerce businesses to attract and retain more customers, as well as to increase their conversion and retention rates.  

According to McKinsey, ecommerce businesses that offer B2C-like features like personalization can increase their revenues by 15% and reduce their costs by 20%. You can do this through personalization of your website with tools like Product Recommendations that help suggest related products to increase sales. 

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Focus on personalization and customer experience

B2B and B2C ecommerce businesses need to understand their customers’ needs, preferences, and behaviors, and tailor their offerings and interactions accordingly. Personalization and customer experience can help B2B and B2C ecommerce businesses to increase customer satisfaction, loyalty, and advocacy, as well as to improve their brand reputation and competitive advantage. According to a Salesforce report, 88% of customers say that the experience a company provides is as important as its products or services.

Related: Redefining personalization for B2B commerce

Market based on customer insights

Data and analytics can help B2B and B2C ecommerce businesses to gain insights into their customers, markets, competitors, and performance, and to optimize their strategies and operations accordingly. Data and analytics can also help B2B and B2C ecommerce businesses to identify new opportunities, trends, and innovations, and to anticipate and respond to customer needs and expectations. According to McKinsey, data-driven organizations are 23 times more likely to acquire customers, six times more likely to retain customers, and 19 times more likely to be profitable. 

What’s next? 

The convergence of B2B and B2C ecommerce is not a temporary phenomenon, but a long-term trend that will continue to shape the future of ecommerce. According to Statista, the global B2B ecommerce market is expected to reach $20.9 trillion by 2027, surpassing the B2C ecommerce market, which is expected to reach $10.5 trillion by 2027. Moreover, the report predicts that the convergence of B2B and B2C ecommerce will create new business models, such as B2B2C, B2A (business to anyone), and C2B (consumer to business). 

Therefore, B2B and B2C ecommerce businesses need to prepare for the converging ecommerce landscape and take advantage of the opportunities and challenges it presents. Here are some recommendations for B2B and B2C ecommerce businesses to navigate the converging landscape: 

  • Conduct a thorough analysis of your customers, competitors, and market, and identify the gaps and opportunities for convergence. 
  • Develop a clear vision and strategy for convergence, and align your goals, objectives, and metrics with it. 
  • Invest in technology and infrastructure that can support your convergence efforts, such as cloud, mobile, AI, and omnichannel platforms. 
  • Implement B2C-like features in your B2B platforms, and vice versa, to enhance your customer experience and satisfaction.
  • Personalize your offerings and interactions with your customers, and provide them with relevant and valuable content and solutions.
  • Leverage data and analytics to optimize your performance and decision making, and to innovate and differentiate your business.
  • Collaborate and partner with other B2B and B2C ecommerce businesses, as well as with other stakeholders, such as suppliers, distributors, and customers, to create value and synergy.
  • Monitor and evaluate your convergence efforts, and adapt and improve them as needed. 

By following these recommendations, B2B and B2C ecommerce businesses can bridge the gap between their models and create a more integrated and seamless ecommerce experience for their customers and themselves. 

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Streamlining Processes for Increased Efficiency and Results

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Streamlining Processes for Increased Efficiency and Results

How can businesses succeed nowadays when technology rules?  With competition getting tougher and customers changing their preferences often, it’s a challenge. But using marketing automation can help make things easier and get better results. And in the future, it’s going to be even more important for all kinds of businesses.

So, let’s discuss how businesses can leverage marketing automation to stay ahead and thrive.

Benefits of automation marketing automation to boost your efforts

First, let’s explore the benefits of marketing automation to supercharge your efforts:

 Marketing automation simplifies repetitive tasks, saving time and effort.

With automated workflows, processes become more efficient, leading to better productivity. For instance, automation not only streamlines tasks like email campaigns but also optimizes website speed, ensuring a seamless user experience. A faster website not only enhances customer satisfaction but also positively impacts search engine rankings, driving more organic traffic and ultimately boosting conversions.

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Automation allows for precise targeting, reaching the right audience with personalized messages.

With automated workflows, processes become more efficient, leading to better productivity. A great example of automated workflow is Pipedrive & WhatsApp Integration in which an automated welcome message pops up on their WhatsApp

within seconds once a potential customer expresses interest in your business.

Increases ROI

By optimizing campaigns and reducing manual labor, automation can significantly improve return on investment.

Leveraging automation enables businesses to scale their marketing efforts effectively, driving growth and success. Additionally, incorporating lead scoring into automated marketing processes can streamline the identification of high-potential prospects, further optimizing resource allocation and maximizing conversion rates.

Harnessing the power of marketing automation can revolutionize your marketing strategy, leading to increased efficiency, higher returns, and sustainable growth in today’s competitive market. So, why wait? Start automating your marketing efforts today and propel your business to new heights, moreover if you have just learned ways on how to create an online business

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How marketing automation can simplify operations and increase efficiency

Understanding the Change

Marketing automation has evolved significantly over time, from basic email marketing campaigns to sophisticated platforms that can manage entire marketing strategies. This progress has been fueled by advances in technology, particularly artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning, making automation smarter and more adaptable.

One of the main reasons for this shift is the vast amount of data available to marketers today. From understanding customer demographics to analyzing behavior, the sheer volume of data is staggering. Marketing automation platforms use this data to create highly personalized and targeted campaigns, allowing businesses to connect with their audience on a deeper level.

The Emergence of AI-Powered Automation

In the future, AI-powered automation will play an even bigger role in marketing strategies. AI algorithms can analyze huge amounts of data in real-time, helping marketers identify trends, predict consumer behavior, and optimize campaigns as they go. This agility and responsiveness are crucial in today’s fast-moving digital world, where opportunities come and go in the blink of an eye. For example, we’re witnessing the rise of AI-based tools from AI website builders, to AI logo generators and even more, showing that we’re competing with time and efficiency.

Combining AI-powered automation with WordPress management services streamlines marketing efforts, enabling quick adaptation to changing trends and efficient management of online presence.

Moreover, AI can take care of routine tasks like content creation, scheduling, and testing, giving marketers more time to focus on strategic activities. By automating these repetitive tasks, businesses can work more efficiently, leading to better outcomes. AI can create social media ads tailored to specific demographics and preferences, ensuring that the content resonates with the target audience. With the help of an AI ad maker tool, businesses can efficiently produce high-quality advertisements that drive engagement and conversions across various social media platforms.

Personalization on a Large Scale

Personalization has always been important in marketing, and automation is making it possible on a larger scale. By using AI and machine learning, marketers can create tailored experiences for each customer based on their preferences, behaviors, and past interactions with the brand.  

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This level of personalization not only boosts customer satisfaction but also increases engagement and loyalty. When consumers feel understood and valued, they are more likely to become loyal customers and brand advocates. As automation technology continues to evolve, we can expect personalization to become even more advanced, enabling businesses to forge deeper connections with their audience.  As your company has tiny homes for sale California, personalized experiences will ensure each customer finds their perfect fit, fostering lasting connections.

Integration Across Channels

Another trend shaping the future of marketing automation is the integration of multiple channels into a cohesive strategy. Today’s consumers interact with brands across various touchpoints, from social media and email to websites and mobile apps. Marketing automation platforms that can seamlessly integrate these channels and deliver consistent messaging will have a competitive edge. When creating a comparison website it’s important to ensure that the platform effectively aggregates data from diverse sources and presents it in a user-friendly manner, empowering consumers to make informed decisions.

Omni-channel integration not only betters the customer experience but also provides marketers with a comprehensive view of the customer journey. By tracking interactions across channels, businesses can gain valuable insights into how consumers engage with their brand, allowing them to refine their marketing strategies for maximum impact. Lastly, integrating SEO services into omni-channel strategies boosts visibility and helps businesses better understand and engage with their customers across different platforms.

The Human Element

While automation offers many benefits, it’s crucial not to overlook the human aspect of marketing. Despite advances in AI and machine learning, there are still elements of marketing that require human creativity, empathy, and strategic thinking.

Successful marketing automation strikes a balance between technology and human expertise. By using automation to handle routine tasks and data analysis, marketers can focus on what they do best – storytelling, building relationships, and driving innovation.

Conclusion

The future of marketing automation looks promising, offering improved efficiency and results for businesses of all sizes.

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As AI continues to advance and consumer expectations change, automation will play an increasingly vital role in keeping businesses competitive.

By embracing automation technologies, marketers can simplify processes, deliver more personalized experiences, and ultimately, achieve their business goals more effectively than ever before.

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Will Google Buy HubSpot? | Content Marketing Institute

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Why Marketers Should Care About Google’s Potential HubSpot Acquisition

Google + HubSpot. Is it a thing?

This week, a flurry of news came down about Google’s consideration of purchasing HubSpot.

The prospect dismayed some. It delighted others.

But is it likely? Is it even possible? What would it mean for marketers? What does the consideration even mean for marketers?

Well, we asked CMI’s chief strategy advisor, Robert Rose, for his take. Watch this video or read on:

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Why Alphabet may want HubSpot

Alphabet, the parent company of Google, apparently is contemplating the acquisition of inbound marketing giant HubSpot.

The potential price could be in the range of $30 billion to $40 billion. That would make Alphabet’s largest acquisition by far. The current deal holding that title happened in 2011 when it acquired Motorola Mobility for more than $12 billion. It later sold it to Lenovo for less than $3 billion.

If the HubSpot deal happens, it would not be in character with what the classic evil villain has been doing for the past 20 years.

At first glance, you might think the deal would make no sense. Why would Google want to spend three times as much as it’s ever spent to get into the inbound marketing — the CRM and marketing automation business?

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At a second glance, it makes a ton of sense.

I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but I and others at CMI spend a lot of time discussing privacy, owned media, and the deprecation of the third-party cookie. I just talked about it two weeks ago. It’s really happening.

All that oxygen being sucked out of the ad tech space presents a compelling case that Alphabet should diversify from third-party data and classic surveillance-based marketing.

Yes, this potential acquisition is about data. HubSpot would give Alphabet the keys to the kingdom of 205,000 business customers — and their customers’ data that almost certainly numbers in the tens of millions. Alphabet would also gain access to the content, marketing, and sales information those customers consumed.

Conversely, the deal would provide an immediate tip of the spear for HubSpot clients to create more targeted programs in the Alphabet ecosystem and upload their data to drive even more personalized experiences on their own properties and connect them to the Google Workspace infrastructure.

When you add in the idea of Gemini, you can start to see how Google might monetize its generative AI tool beyond figuring out how to use it on ads on search results pages.

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What acquisition could mean for HubSpot customers

I may be stretching here but imagine this world. As a Hubspoogle customer, you can access an interface that prioritizes your owned media data (e.g., your website, your e-commerce catalog, blog) when Google’s Gemini answers a question).

Recent reports also say Google may put up a paywall around the new premium features of its artificial intelligence-powered Search Generative Experience. Imagine this as the new gating for marketing. In other words, users can subscribe to Google’s AI for free, but Hubspoogle customers can access that data and use it to create targeted offers.

The acquisition of HubSpot would immediately make Google Workspace a more robust competitor to Microsoft 365 Office for small- and medium-sized businesses as they would receive the ADDED capability of inbound marketing.

But in the world of rented land where Google is the landlord, the government will take notice of the acquisition. But — and it’s a big but, I cannot lie (yes, I just did that). The big but is whether this acquisition dance can happen without going afoul of regulatory issues.

Some analysts say it should be no problem. Others say, “Yeah, it wouldn’t go.” Either way, would anybody touch it in an election year? That’s a whole other story.

What marketers should realize

So, what’s my takeaway?

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It’s a remote chance that Google will jump on this hard, but stranger things have happened. It would be an exciting disruption in the market.

The sure bet is this. The acquisition conversation — as if you needed more data points — says getting good at owned media to attract and build audiences and using that first-party data to provide better communication and collaboration with your customers are a must.

It’s just a matter of time until Google makes a move. They might just be testing the waters now, but they will move here. But no matter what they do, if you have your customer data house in order, you’ll be primed for success.

Want more content marketing tips, insights, and examples? Subscribe to workday or weekly emails from CMI.

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Cover image by Joseph Kalinowski/Content Marketing Institute

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