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Justin Norris, Sr. Director of Solutions Architecture at Perkuto

Justin Norris, Sr. Director of Solutions Architecture at Perkuto

"Marketo is the best system of execution for what it does within that marketing sphere."

Episode Summary

Justin is a Marketo expert and 4x Marketo Champion. Early on in his career, Justin specialized himself in Marketo to provide empowerment to people, processes, and platforms to enhance Marketing and Sales operations. In this episode of The Data Heroes Podcast, Justin Norris (Sr. Director of Solutions Architecture at Perkuto) talks about Marketing campaigns and how powerful solutions, like Marketo, enable superior management of the customer life cycle.

"One of the very earliest lessons I learned in marketing was the importance of knowing your customer, whoever they are.” For Justin, developing a fundamental understanding of the customer, their voice, pain points and needs is the only way to effectively target them and provide outstanding customer experiences. And data is needed to create those automated, scalable experiences. “Whether that’s more on the marketing side piping data into CRM to enable customer success use cases or, actually improving the customer experience through data."

No matter your market, a successful ABM strategy requires a successful set of tools and accurate data to empower your CRM. Justin and John also discuss usability of marketing systems, dirty data disasters, and specializing in Marketo and Salesforce.

Justin Norris, Sr. Director of Solutions Architecture at Perkuto
Justin Norris, Sr. Director of Solutions Architecture at Perkuto
Name: Justin Norris
What he does: Sr. Director of Solutions Architecture
Company: Perkuto
Noteworthy: 4x Marketo Champion
Where to find Justin: LinkedIn

View Clips

Justin’s Biggest Dirty Data Disaster

Episode Highlights

Branding Around Marketo

"I started to see that in the Marketo community there were people that were really hitching their star to the product and really branding themselves around it. People like Josh Hill early in the day. He really took that mantle on and became kind of Mr Marketo. And I think led the way for lots of people among others, but he was very prominent at that time. And I could see what it was doing for his crew. So I kind of saw that sort of thing and made the decision that was kind of a great path to go on. It was a good ecosystem but a bit smaller than the Salesforce ecosystem, which is such a big pond but still not so small that it would limit your opportunity. There was lots of demand and growth and Marketo was a great platform to be around a lot of excited, passionate brand advocates."

Develop Understanding of the Customer

"That's the heart of effective product development: Sales and Marketing. If you don't have that, you're just putting window dressing over a big void. So that's the way I would think about that problem is; Who is your customer? What keeps them up at night? What do they want? And then you build it out from there using methods that are fairly well known. Do your basic market research to understand who you're selling to. Do that same effort to walk a mile in your customer's shoes."

Jack of All CRM’s

"You need to understand the limitations of Salesforce and Marketo to have that credibility and trust. So that when I can get on a call with a CRM team or a sales ops team I am able to speak their language. For a consultant that's a vital skill. So Salesforce fortunately has one of the best ecosystems for learning that I've ever seen. Trailhead in Salesforce is amazing for learning and checking real live work you're doing in the systems. So there's no excuse not to be Salesforce-fluid and no excuse not to be certified either. I think it's critical. If that's the tool that you're running into you have to know to function effectively."

Introducing Perkuto

"We're a marketing operations consultancy specializing in the Adobe ecosystem and specifically in Marketo. So that's one of the things that makes us a bit different. We made a decision very early on to focus solely on Marketo. We're very much focused on the needs of marketing operations. Again, as a point of differentiation, we don't really do content marketing. We don't do demand strategy. We're really focused on the Marketing Operations professional and how we help them achieve excellence, along with sort of operational workflows and setting up the infrastructure. We also help companies with campaign execution. One of our co-founders is the Lean Six Sigma Black Belt and our process has been built into Perkuto from a very early stage. And so the work that we've done to develop methodologies to deliver quality work at scale is not something I've necessarily seen elsewhere in our ecosystem. And that extends from the way we manage projects, defining requirements, documentation that we provide the QA, all that comes together to deliver repeatable successful outcomes, no matter who you're working with. And Perkuto has taken some work to get there and something that I think is unique."

Justin's Dirty Data Disaster.

"Once I helped a client integrate Marketo and Salesforce and I forgot to turn on the field blocking rules. In Marketo, some clients don't use field blocking rules but this client did, and didn't want values in Salesforce being overwritten by Marketo. And months passed until we realized what was going on, causing a lot of data degradation. And we had to go through a process of reverse engineering all of the data changes that had happened and rebuilding it. Like putting up Humpty Dumpty back together again. I learned a lot about that and how to actually do that. But that’s certainly a mistake you only make once. ‘Did I check the field block?’ You're going to think about that immediately. So it gets sort of seared in your brain, but that was about the worst of it from a time and expense correction point of view."


Key Insights

  • The Rise of API's. According to Justin, the rise of API’s have been quite steady and the business sphere’s understanding of them is radically different from 10 years ago. Their rise has aided and improved usability and accessibility, meaning anyone can go from 0 to hero. However, organizations might run into issues concerning coordination when stitching together a range of different tools, causing dysfunction. "That's really changed things. I think what's missing from the picture is the coordination of it all. Meaning, that if you're manually stitching all of these different tools together and maintaining rules in separate places. Increasingly we're going to be looking at tools that from one perspective or another are trying to orchestrate all of those things together providing an orchestration layer that spans across it."
  • Managing Account Linking. To maintain cohesive coordination and avoid errors, businesses must employ successful processes for linking leads in a B2B database to respective accounts. Without successful database management and routing strategies, effort is wasted, efficiency is squandered, and critical database issues can arise, leading to problems when engaging the customer. "It’s probably the biggest risk aside from that could just be lack of insight. So you're dialing into somebody that you think is just an inbound lead and maybe you don't realize that they’re already a customer and have all their information. Or you don't have a good sense of the account mapping. So the information available to a seller or a marketer who's running a campaign is a lot more impoverished than if you had accurately mapped that against the account and at all the right information available."
  • Marketo Vs. Salesforce. According to Justin, operations specialists stand to gain great advantages by developing an effective understanding of Marketo and Salesforce. Due to the fact that the two systems can converse with one another and have functional overlaps; operations crews who are well versed in both programs have a great advantage to resolve any problem that arises. "You need to know it from a troubleshooting perspective and any complicated thing that you do besides sending email. For example, any operational workflow, scoring, lifecycle or routing, it's going to span both systems. It needs to know what you're doing. You need to understand the limitations, the gotchas, the object model on the Salesforce side, what automations are available. There's limitations in Marketo and depending on what you want to do, they may have a need to use automations on the Salesforce side."
Justin Norris, Sr. Director of Solutions Architecture at Perkuto

Top Quotes

[03:48] "Using the data to create these automated, scalable experiences and improving the customer experience."

[11:47] "The smart campaign is the key innovation really in Marketo."

[13:04] "Marketo is the best system of execution for what it does within that marketing sphere."

[18:16] "One of the very earliest lessons I learned in marketing was just the importance of knowing your customer, you know, whoever they are."

[29:13] "You need to understand the limitations, the gotchas, the object model on the Salesforce side and what automations are available. Because there's limitations in Marketo, and depending on what you want to do they may need to use automations on the Salesforce side."

[29:38] "So Salesforce fortunately has one of the best ecosystems for learning, you know, that I've ever seen."