This post was originally written by ComBlu’s Kathy Baughman and featured on Oracle’s blog, Smarter CX.

Machine learning and artificial intelligence will take over mundane tasks across the enterprise, freeing people up for more strategic activities. In preparation, more organizations will “press pause” to ascertain their readiness across three dimensions: processes, systems, and talent. All need to be optimized to ensure ROI.

Processes: Outdated processes or ad hoc approaches prevent a customer-first view that allows delivery of highly customized, contextual experiences regardless of channel or touchpoint. Multiple studies from organizations like CiscoMercer, and Deloitte indicate that this is the year companies plan to revisit how they collaborate across functions and teams. In addition, companies will adopt better governance to provide more freedom to create differentiating experiences while at the same time providing guard rails to assure consistent messaging and branding.

Systems: New processes may require jettisoning or augmenting systems and tools. Many platforms already incorporate basic AI that supports marketing automation, account-based marketing, predictive analytics, CRM and customer experience. A recent Demand Gen survey indicated that 70% of respondents feel that AI-powered apps will improve/accelerate ability to offer up next best action along the full customer lifecycle. Yet only 14% currently use AI-powered tools. 38% are actively considering how to integrate AI apps into their tech stack. As they do, companies will press pause to consider how to optimize current tools or add functionality or determine if it makes sense to start anew.

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Cheryl Treleaven

Cheryl Treleaven


Engaging your customers is at the heart of successful marketing programs. For more than 20 years, Cheryl has been building and executing content and thought leadership strategies designed to do just that. She is excited to be applying that well-honed skill to a help companies like Microsoft, Cisco, 3M, Intel, Capital One and Barclaycard tap into their stakeholder communities and build sophisticated content strategies.

Her experience base spans a range of industries – from technology and financial services to retail, travel, consumer products and healthcare. Cheryl has served as an integral member of her clients’ marketing teams, providing counsel on marketing and brand strategy, thought leadership, media relations, product introductions, and event management.

Prior to joining ComBlu, Cheryl spent 10 years leading corporate marketing for large, complex organizations.