We interviewed Aslihan Ayan, a Marketo Champion since Winter of 2016. She started her career as a developer, she then moved from a website development and design to Search Engine Optimization, from there she progressed into adwords PPC campaigns. It all became an opportunity for her to explore marketing automation to be able to tie each of those different campaigns into one platform. At present, Aslihan works as a Senior Marketing Consultant at Demand Spring. According to her making mistakes in marketing automation is not bad at all, in fact it allows you to learn more about it.
My name is Aslihan Ayan a.k.a Ashley, I’m a Senior Marketing Consultant with Demand Spring and I’m a Marketo Champion since January 2016. So, I started my career as developer and then I moved from a website development and design to SEO – Search Engine Optimization and I did for SMB’s and some application hosting companies from there I progressed into adwords PPC campaigns and then it became a time for me to do the marketing automation to be able to tie all of these different campaigns that we were running into one platform.
How did you end up becoming a Marketo Champion?
So, I think after 3 years of using Marketo I (was) keep seeing all these champions and again that’s the time that I am building my confidence in the sense of what will happen if I fail like I’m just gonna apply and see if they think that I am worthy to become a champion and again I think I was lucky that they selected, I was one of the selected ones.
What is a common misconception with the career path you’ve chosen to take?
So, most of the time when you say you are a marketing person one people assume you’re creative but I think I take a pride on that one, I like that they think I’m creative because I label myself as “database creative” but one of the biggest conceptions that I always have to deal with is people assume that technology solves their problems, so they will buy any tool and they think they’re golden now. But for me (the actually the) technology is just a vehicle and you need the processes, the decisions, the business behind it to make these tools successful.
What are the special characteristics to be successful in this marketing automation career path?
You need to be curious and you need to be fearless. Curious in the sense of that you should not assume that you know it and you have done that. Always look for how is other people are doing it cause there’s always a better way potentially that they were doing it or they have a different way looking at that problem. And fearless in the sense of don’t be scared to ask any question, again the more you ask the more you debate the more you learn.
What is a valuable lesson you’ve learned so far that you can share with marketers who want to learn marketing automation and make it into their career?
Making mistakes is not as bad as you think, you know and everybody does make mistakes. For me one of the best Marketo sessions is when (things) Marketo Champs talk about mistakes that they make, I call them therapy sessions because those are the best ones that actually gives you the courage to say “Everybody do it, I can do it too and that’s okay.”
What two important things have you learned about yourself now that you’re in marketing?
So, what I learned just getting into marketing automation mainly I learned that (you know, being) failing was not as bad as I was fearing from because for me that the more I fail the more I learn. To me that became like a badge almost to say that I’m gonna try something and be okay with failing. So, that is something that I learned about myself that I did not think that I had 5 years ago. And other thing is, I think you (you) learn that you don’t know everything because when you first start when you’re young in your industry, you think you’re the expert, you wanna become the expert and accepting the fact you will never gonna become the person that knows everything and you’re just have to do continues and learn and you’re never gonna come to that point that you are the number, you are the only, you have everything about that solution.
Can you give a little information of your learning process of marketing automation?
I think when you first get into marketing automation people assume that marketing automation equals email marketing only and there’s still people get stuck at that point but marketing automation is more than that. It’s actually being a hub for all the marketing activity campaigns that you’re doing and to me Marketo was or marketing automation tools out there does provide that but still there is a, that people assume that it’s just email marketing but there’s so much more you can do with marketing automation and that’s actually where the core platform lies.
What tips can you give to aspiring marketers who are just starting to use marketing automation?
Just be fearless, I mean go out there ask the stupid questions that you can ask. You know, don’t be scared and (there’s always) what I love about the Marketo community is there’s so many people that they want to tell you what they know and they don’t think any question is a stupid question it’s extreme as supportive community.
Hope you enjoyed our one-on-one interview with our marketing champion. Stay tuned for more updates. Follow us on FB, Instagram, and Twitter for more updates.