Stephen Hill (JLL) - A Self-Proclaimed Data Freak

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This is a podcast episode titled, Stephen Hill (JLL) - A Self-Proclaimed Data Freak. The summary for this episode is: <p>Stephen Hill, the Director of Demand and Digital Operations at JLL, chats with us about a variety of channels that can be used for marketing and how data is more critical than ever these days.</p>

Speaker 1: Maybe big data has gotten too big. Whether you're a B2B marketer or a consumer brand, your data needs to be viable, relevant and accessible so that Stirista can help you retain customers, acquire customers and make it personal.

Vin: Welcome to the Marketing Stir Podcast by Stirista, probably the most entertaining marketing podcast you're going to put in your ear. I'm Vin, the producer here at Stirista. The goal of this podcast is to chat with industry leaders and get their take on the current challenges of the market, and we'll have a little fun along the way. And today's episode, Stephen Hill, the Director of Demand and Digital Operations at JLL. Chat with us about a variety of channels that can be used for marketing and how data is more critical than ever these days. Give it a listen.

Vincent Pietrafesa: All right, ladies and gentlemen, welcome to another episode of Stirista's the Marketing Stir. I, of course, and your always happy host, Vincent Pietrafesa, the Vice President of B2B products and partnerships here at Stirista. And still, interim general manager of our B2B Division. Rocking it out. Still interim. We'll get the general manager someday people. That's okay. I'm still going to work hard. Let's talk about Stirista for just a moment, that's all. We don't accept advertising on this podcast, but just Stirista, we're a marketing technology company. We own our own business- to- business data, business- to- consumer data. We help companies access that data to help them get new customers. Who couldn't use new customers? We have our own email sending platform, our own DSP, new display, connect the TV, email me at vincentatrista. com. That is how confident I am. I just gave all of you my email. And boy, are you using it. Not always for the reason I intend, but you're listening. That's all that matters. You tell me how much you like the podcast, you ask me to be on the podcast. We just don't let anyone on this thing. So, be patient and thank you for listening. I'm so happy also, ladies and gentlemen, because my co- host, this gentleman will be here in- person tomorrow in New York City. Ladies and gentlemen, he has a haircut because he knows I would give him some crap for not having a haircut. Ladies and gentlemen, my co- host, Mr. Ajay Gupta. What's going on, Ajay?

Ajay Gupta: Hey, Vincent. Actually, dread coming to New York City because I have to go to the barber. It only happens every few months, sometimes three months.

Vincent Pietrafesa: Yeah, as opposed to every 10 days like me.

Ajay Gupta: Yeah. And I think it used to be every seven days for you, right?

Vincent Pietrafesa: I used to. Yeah, I grew up a little bit and I was like, " All right, this is ridiculous. I can't go every seven days." children and family and all that stuff, but every 10 days. But New York City, it's a quick trip. You're coming in. We're hanging with some clients, some friends. You're going to a cool event in the Hamptons.

Ajay Gupta: First time in the Hamptons, I really didn't realize how difficult it is to get to the Hamptons. I think that's when I realized, " All right, if I have to go to Hamptons, I need my own private jet or something."

Vincent Pietrafesa: Which most people who go there, they're either flying on their jet or their helicopter. It's crazy. It's a crazy area. Living in New York City here and a lot of people in my neighborhood, they're just like, " Oh, they have a house in the Hamptons." They call it out east. I'm like, " Come on." it's the Hamptons. Out east, what are you talking about, Asia? What are you are you doing? But it'll be fun. So, short trip, but it'll still be memorable. We'll have some fun.

Ajay Gupta: Yeah, I think because I obviously went to college in upstate New York, so I think I have been to literally every part of New York, but the Hamptons, so this will be something new and unique.

Vincent Pietrafesa: He might like it. And then, that could be trouble, and then there's a house out there. That's okay, I'll come visit. That'll be good. But yes, we're going to have some fun. So, stay tuned ladies and gentlemen too, because you're always interested in what Ajay and I are adventures. That's what you tell me at these conferences when you come and see me. So, we'll report back on the event. I will not be there, but we'll cover it with our Stirista Long Island team, so we are good. Speaking of-

Ajay Gupta: Looking forward to seeing you tomorrow.

Vincent Pietrafesa: Yes, tomorrow it's the day. We're going to rock it out. Have some good time. Some New York City rooftops are always great this time of year also, what's great this time of year, every time of year ladies and gentlemen is our next guest. I'm so excited for you to hear about this organization, JLL. Yup, that's right, JLL. You might've heard of it. If not, you can hear more of it. We're so happy to have this guest, the Director of Demand and Digital Operations, Stephen Hill. What's going on, Stephen?

Stephen Hill: Not much, Vincent. Thanks for having me, Vincent and Ajay.

Vincent Pietrafesa: It's great to have you, Stephen. It's recently that we talked and we're making this happen. I love it. I like when things work out that way. Sometimes it's like, oh, I'll meet someone, and then four months later, we have them on the podcast. And then, four years later I meet them in- person. So, we got you on here quick because I love your story. Let's hope that it's not four years that we meet in person.

Stephen Hill: Right on. Well, and I grew up outside of New York, so love it there. And I just cut my hair this morning. Before this, I had long, beautiful flowing hair, and then I just cut it all off. But now I cut every week for me.

Vincent Pietrafesa: Yeah, every seven days.

Stephen Hill: I do it myself so it's very quick. But no, thanks for having me. I've been with JLL for five years. It's Jones Lang LaSalle. It's a large international corporate real estate services firm, just shy of 200 on the Fortune 500 list. But we provide a full range of corporate real estate services from all kinds of leasing transactions, asset transactions to full range of services whether that's debt advisory, valuation advisory for investors or all kinds of facilities management, portfolio optimization, consulting services for occupiers and investors altogether.

Vincent Pietrafesa: Absolutely. And me living in New York City, I see the JLL name all over the place, which is great. And a lot of people, you see JLL, you're like, " All right, we're in good hands. This building's going to be just fine." And finally, we're like, " Oh, we have to get someone on from JLL because I constantly see them." So, Stephen, talk to us about your role within the organization. You're doing a few different things there. There's a lot in that title. It's a great title, lot in there. So, talk to us about what you're doing.

Stephen Hill: For sure. And I'm thrilled to be at JLL, really proud of the company. And my role is basically running digital marketing for the Americas region. We definitely do most of our business here, so we cover a lot of bases. Digital marketing is, you're very aware, is super dynamic. There's so many different functions and aspects that come to bear in this space, which keeps it very interesting, really exciting. It's that great, we love to say where the poetry and the plumbing come together. Telling great stories but making sure we activate that across all of our digital channels. And that we're able to identify actionable intelligence, as I like to say, for our salespeople. Because if we aren't making our sales folks more money and less time, then we're doing something wrong in marketing. But with digital marketing, full funnel, integrated marketing across all channels with a key eye on generating demand and making sure we're delivering that value across the aisle over to sales.

Vincent Pietrafesa: Love it. And Stephen, talk to us about how you got into marketing. This is one of our guests and our listeners' favorite question.

Stephen Hill: Sure. And I've got quite the journey. I've done a lot of different things. But the first job I ever had was one I created for myself in summer during college window washing service. And it was the time I got my hands on my first marketing list and did a mail merge using Microsoft Word and Excel, and printed up the labels and mailed out my mailers and completely booked up my summer with one distribution of that direct mail list. So, that's really when I started officially in marketing. But I've done a lot of different things. I worked in the restaurant business for a good 10 years, and did a ton of marketing there. So, we're going back a good 20 plus years now in early 2000s, building websites from scratch, doing first Google ad and doing paid search back then. But also, doing classic email, really direct mail, and we'd print up our own postcards on our printer and get those out. Over the years, I moved into sales and spent a number of years in sales, particularly at CDW, selling technology into healthcare. Then, officially moved into marketing at CDW about four years. And there, spent seven years really working my way up from a program manager delivering lead programs to sales teams, to basically running leads, running marketing automation at CDW. And then, got recruited into JLL, saw a great opportunity to build really the demand gen function from scratch and have had a wonderful run here of just building the team really from scratch here at JLL to really do full spectrum, full funnel, integrated digital marketing that can identify actionable sales opportunities.

Ajay Gupta: Talk to us a little bit about what are some of the channels and strategies you're using currently for marketing JLL?

Stephen Hill: We do a full mix. So, while we are heavy with using Eloqua Marketing Automation, we do a ton of email. We've got deep relationships with our existing clients and those folks that we have as first party data in our database. We certainly love email and making sure we're ultra relevant in that space. But we definitely like to go to the digital channels for identifying net new and developing awareness, so we certainly use paid search display. We're starting to use Google Power Max. Do really focus our paid social through LinkedIn primarily, but keeping our eyes open for new spaces there, a little bit of Facebook, a little bit of Instagram in that space. And then, we do a ton of virtual events, so certainly using various platforms for virtual events and getting into LinkedIn live streaming as well. So, really, a full integrated digital marketing channel mix.

Ajay Gupta: And how important is the role of data in your marketing?

Stephen Hill: Data's the lifeblood. And I am a self- proclaimed data freak. The day starts and ends with the data. I'm always in it and I'm always refining it and using it to really identify, let the data tell us where to go next. These days, data is more critical than ever. Privacy is critical, making sure we're doing right by the folks who subscribe, making sure we're ultra relevant, making sure we're getting the right message to the right people at the right time, obviously. None of that's possible if your data is not structured correctly. I'm a big fan of what was once called the Demand Unit or a buying group with a shared need. But really looking at leads not just as individual contacts, but really as a full buying group that has a shared need and really digging into the details of that group. And so, we've structured our database to be able to accommodate buying group level leads, and it's been a huge benefit. And for complex long- term sales like we get into at JLL, it's high value for our salespeople. So, making sure the data is set up to deliver higher value intelligence to sales is everything.

Vincent Pietrafesa: Data freak. I love it. That's a great name and a great name for an episode too.

Stephen Hill: There you go.

Vincent Pietrafesa: So, Stephen, talk to us about, you're marketing huge in North America here. Are you using persona- based? Are you using an ABM approach or both? Talk to us about that. And I'd love to understand also, is it a mix of JLL doing marketing to the people who are occupying the building? I'd love to understand a little bit more about that because a lot of ways that you can market.

Stephen Hill: Absolutely. Persona- based, yes. ABM, yes. We are doing some piloting within ABM using, we're piloting with 6sense right now, but we've also used Demandbase in the past and see high, high value with intent data, with using AI to build really great models to identify really that perfect customer. But where we see a lot of value with ABM and certainly the personas are with starting with our existing clients, knowing their very specific needs and knowing really frankly, where's the next benefit that we could provide them and making sure we are targeting them appropriately using those types of ABM and those types of personalization tools. Making sure we're having the right conversation with somebody who might be more very specifically in the operations side. So, when we're getting into personas, we've been opening up to groups like human resources, which typically has not been a member of say a buying group for a corporate real estate decision. But talking to them about the hybrid work experience and how you can use real estate for acquiring the best candidates and retaining your best people because they have such an amazing good work experience, whether that's in the office or at home or a hybrid experience across those environments. The big groups for JLL from a persona perspective is on one side of the coin, you've got investors who buy and sell real estate assets, and then also need services like property management to manage leases within their building. And then, on the flip side, you've got those people who are leasing spaces and they're occupiers. They might be big organizations and they might have lots of leases around the world and helping manage those leases, helping manage those facilities for those occupiers. And so, it is two very different sides of the coin, very different content that we will share with an investor versus an occupier. And certainly, very different content when you're talking to somebody who's deep in the corporate real estate world versus say, when we're opening the door to having conversations with HR. So, it is quite a range of stories and audiences that we need to tell and communicate with. And even the spectrum of transactions that can go pretty quick from a sales cycle to our services that can go two, three years of a sales cycle. So, lots of complexity, lots of different audiences, because we sell a lot of different products and full- blown services to a nice mix of persona groups there.

Vincent Pietrafesa: No, you definitely do. And it's like you said, it's different hats that you're putting on where it's, okay, it's different messaging, it's different methods. And also, historically, commercial real estate has been really localized, and I would imagine COVID had changed that. And has JLL recently branched into the nationwide mix and talk to us what that's been like.

Stephen Hill: For sure. And that's a great question because COVID has changed everything in the corporate real estate world, and it certainly had a huge impact on JLLs marketing organization, how we market, who's doing what does that all look like? And so, ultimately, real estate's always a local first mindset. That building is in a particular town and there's folks in that town who understand the needs and the nature of that space, and you really got to deliver that local value. And you always really need to keep that connection, that really true feat on the street. But any very large organization, you need really good governance, you need really good digital marketing standards. You have to have really consistent messaging. You have to have great consistency around your brand. And JLL grew up, has a lot of littles, lots of different... the organization is hundreds of years old, but its current iteration is the merger of so many different local businesses and other larger businesses that came together. And so, my team was really just me and a couple other people when COVID hit. But we did have a phenomenal database that we had developed that we, in the most nice way refer to as mother, the mother of our data. And because we could manage that, because we could do multi- touch email, because we were very comfortable doing email, social, paid to promote virtual events. When COVID hit and people couldn't meet in- person, we needed to consolidate our message around COVID, make sure we're not being too salesy, frankly, and using such a tragic event. We weren't seeing as an opportunity, we just wanted to make sure we were really consistent with our messaging and that we were basically here for our customers who had a ton of questions about how do they deal with this new environment. So, multi- touch email. And we ended up doing a phenomenal webinar series. We did, I think, over 25 webinars in 2020. We had over 40, 000 people register, over 25,000 showed up. And I think we even tracked almost 30, 000 poll answers that people had answered during these virtual events that were incredibly insightful for us to be very direct in how we can be helpful to them. Once again, using centralized, standardized, best practice digital marketing, but to be more human, to allow our salespeople to have a more relevant conversation to get to the point with their customers and the questions and the problems they have. And so, COVID really accelerated the centralization of our national marketing efforts in the Americas. And then, since then, we've really created a nice another hybrid story, the balance between local and national and global and how we balance the messaging across those, the levels of personalizations that's possible when you get down to that local level. And really managing our stakeholders needs across that broad to very specific geo and audience targeting that we can enable from with our best- in- class digital marketing capabilities.

Ajay Gupta: Stephen, you come from a background where you worked in sales before marketing, which is pretty unusual for a marketer sometimes. Would love to know what benefits you saw from having that sales background and how it affects your view as a marketer.

Stephen Hill: For me, I think it's gold. And it's almost like I'd want almost everybody in marketing to be required to have spent some time either dialing for dollars or going and dealing with a thousand nos before you get to that yes. Really understanding the needs of the customer, really knowing what it takes to develop a long- term relationship with those customers is gold. I also spend a lot of time in restaurants, which is such a sales focused environment, and it's also that combination of, one minute, you're selling and the next minute, you're operating, whether you're in the front of the house at any given moment. And the fact that the customer is always right and making sure that that customer experience across all of the touches with your business is amazing is super, super critical. And so, one of the things we always were shooting for, just a term that it's just this seamless experience across digital and human touch points. And that bridge across marketing and sales is so, so, so critical for business success, and it's cats and dogs. Very different worlds and they see the world oftentimes very different but it's all for the same purpose. And so, seeing marketing through the lens of sales has certainly benefited me particularly from that demand gen perspective. But really, demand gen runs throughout all of digital marketing these days. Everybody needs to prove that ROI associated with that marketing investment. And if you don't have that relationship with sales, then it oftentimes turns into a box checking exercise where, " I did what I was supposed to do. I sent them the leads. They didn't do any action. That's not my fault. I wash my hands of it." But the way I see it is, like I said before, if we don't help a salesperson make more money and less time, then they won't value the intelligence we're sharing with them. If they don't see it as actionable or, " Hey, tell me something I didn't know." If we're not telling a salesperson something they didn't know, then it's a waste of their time. Or they think it's just, " Oh, you're just tracking my stuff so you can pay me less." or something like that. Really, It's about the value exchange. And knowing your customer, which is the salesperson from my point of view, is gold for a marketer. And just keeping that sense of urgency of... the way that the sales machine runs is they got to put up more dollars for every minute they spend. And if we can help them with that, and I am a true believer that the digital intelligence we're able to gather is so valuable in getting them to a better conversation, getting them deeper in with the right contacts at the right companies once again at the right time, it's a guaranteed opportunity for them to make more money and less time. So, I'm a big proponent. It's been valuable for me and it also just helps me speak honestly with salespeople about the garbage I used to get from marketing when I was in sales and what are we doing today to make sure they're getting the greatest value from these marketing leads.

Ajay Gupta: Stephen, that's an awesome answer. I think as somebody who has run sales and marketing before, I can completely relate to this friction that's often caused, because marketing feels that washing their hands off it and sales is unhappy that they didn't get the lead quality they wanted. So, there's always the source of all friction between marketing and sales. A great answer.

Stephen Hill: We're all in it together, right?

Ajay Gupta: Yup. So, related to that question. What advice do you have for others that are looking to change their career or get into a marketing role?

Stephen Hill: I think that's a great question because it's so dynamic and interesting but I think it's really, really important. What I love that we're talking about more than ever is authenticity, and really being yourself. And seeing where your skills really compliment the skills of a team or an organization as a whole. And so, certainly, me, I have such a weird background with the restaurant experience that even when I was applying for my first sales gig, they're like, " What is this?" But I could tell the story of how the customer is so important and how we develop relationships, and that the whole point is to move more product faster. And so, that by complimenting in that story to get into sales, what I had learned from small business and what I learned about running a small business and the full experience of the user, it helped me get into sales. But then, when I flipped over to marketing, it was just the flip side argument. It's just like, okay, well, I actually had some really interesting marketing experience and it was very early days of digital with using Google Ad Network back when it was just really archaic and building websites from scratch back in the day, to now true modern digital marketing and awesome marketing automation platforms and the ability to score and all this stuff. But I could bring that experience to bear and share the story of how it can help provide a new perspective to, say, a marketing department full of folks who are regular marketers. But I think it's really being authentic about what you provide as a person, what's special about you, what's your superpowers as an individual. And how does that compliment whatever team, whatever role, whatever organization you're looking to get into to really highlight how your piece fits into their puzzle.

Vincent Pietrafesa: Stephen, I want to talk about your background in a moment. It is a unique background. There's a lot of cool things that you've done. But before that, let's talk about, because our listeners would love to know this, commercial real estate, going back to the office. I'm in the office, I'm a five- time a week guy, but it's changed in different regions. How is JLL addressing that? How are you marketing based on those regions?

Stephen Hill: It's a great question and I can share my perspective as a marketer. But JLL has got amazing researchers who go deep in this topic and break it up in so many ways. And frankly, I'm blown away by JLLs resilience at a time when people are talking about doom loops and Armageddon in commercial real estate and certainly high interest rates aren't helping anything. But I'm so impressed by the resilience and impressed by that dynamic human nature. It's wild to watch. So, I commute into Chicago, three days a week. I'm obviously working from home today and I love the hybrid work experience. And I think it's a really good balance. And JLL has embraced that as really being straightforward about hybrid is really where it's at for the average person out there. But that means that you have to repurpose those environments to get the most bang for your buck if you're investor. If you're leasing that space, how do you optimize your space? So, these really change the equation for a lot of folks, but there's also so many upsides and opportunities. People are talking about and reading articles all the time about repurposing office space for more residential. Well, that's just another opportunity for an organization like JLL that has actual designers and project development folks that can help transition buildings. Well, the office leasing might go down, but then multifamily unit leasing might go way up. So, I think it's a really dynamic and exciting and interesting space, and it really screams to these bigger changes in society. I think the vibrancy of our cities is incredibly valuable. And so, certainly, you're going in. You have five days a week, so you're on that end of the spectrum. And there's tons of folks I know who never go in. And I love that hybrid balance because I do love the best of both worlds, being in the office a few days to make sure I'm able to collaborate in some of the side conversations I might have with one of my stakeholders that I wouldn't normally be able to have if it's only through my Zoom info teams channel meetings. So, all the value of being able to collaborate with people in- person is extremely important. But also, not burning up unnecessary hours commuting just to go in and be on Zoom calls all day, we got to be honest about that. So, let's rightsize our use for that purpose. And in any business, that's close to this, you got to balance those challenges with those upside opportunities and see really how you make lemonade. We're always at the end of the day in the lemonade business. Well, and things like sustainability. I'm incredibly proud of JLL's stance on sustainability, getting to carbon net neutral target by 2030. And even the value of how sustainability is something that, well, you can optimize your space, you can lower your carbon footprint, you can improve your energy usage and you can save money. So, there's a win- win- win opportunity here if we navigate these tricky waters well.

Vincent Pietrafesa: Well said. And Stephen, the background. So, art, music. You were a toy maker at some point. You were in the technology business, CDW there. How has all that, the creative side, the art and the music, the toy really helped you at JLL or just as a marketer?

Stephen Hill: Yeah. No, it's a great question. And I think it does come back to that really cool thing why I've really been in this demand gen digital marketing space more than any other job I've ever had at this point because it really does bring together that full spectrum. On one side, it is total poetry. It is how do you turn that phrase. How can you say something in two words that typically is said in 50 words, that takes a lot of creativity, but also the plumbing. And it's like how can you provide the greatest digital engagement strategy to make sure that your story gets through to those right people, right time, right place, right channel. And I love the mechanics of that. And getting deep into the data and the differences and how can we create an AI company name matching tool. Let's go deep into how do we use the best of marketing automation or learning machine algorithms in these ABM tools to save us time and to use our human creativity where it best suits us, rather than just grinding out the tasks. Let's let our tools grind out the task. Let's use our human creativity to apply those capabilities in new and interesting ways. And I think that's really, really, really fun. And so, I surprised when I got had the opportunity to go deeper in data, just how comfortable I was in the data side. I was never a big student, basically dyslexic. My kids are super dyslexic, even worse than I am. And so, the typical academic environment has never been a friendly space for me. But getting to the answer, getting to the solution quickly has always been the game. And using data, using tools to get to that answer, get to that better solution, that testable better way of digitally marketing to somebody is such a creative and exciting thing even though it might be super, super technical. So, I think some of my bouncing around is a little bit from the dyslexia, and I like that range of going deep on business things, but I also love making crazy wire sculptures with motors in them and stuff. And my first gig out of college was an internship in a prototype shop for a toy company outside of Cleveland that I think eventually got absorbed by Hasbro. And I'm painting the eyes on stretch Armstrong doll and things like that for new prototype thing. But learning all those things and that basically how do you solve a puzzle nobody has the instructions for. That is what my experience has helped me in the world of digital marketing and demand gen where, hey, especially when you get into enterprise space and things get really fuzzy and complex. You've got old systems. You've got new systems. We've got five, six instances of marketing automation. We've got many, many instances of CRM. We might have a lot of Ferrari, but they're not all necessarily able to be raced like Ferrari. So, what do you do in the meantime? What do you do when the system doesn't talk to that system? So, my wide range of experience and being able to jump into a lot of different things has helped me deal with, " Oh, well, the platform doesn't solve for that." So, instead of just shoulder shrug, I was like, " Well, we'll figure it out. I'll hire three contractors and we're going to do it manually." We'll figure it out. There's always a way. So, when the machines stop working and the people and the consultants don't have an answer, " What are you going to do?" That marketing out the door, you still got to deliver the leads. You still got to turn the crank on the ROI machine. So, being creative when nobody's going to give you the answers is where my experiences, I feel like has helped me the most.

Ajay Gupta: Stephen, here's a fun one for you. We asked this for every guest. I'm sure you get a lot of LinkedIn messages unsolicited. What's one that gets a response from you and what's one that really annoys you?

Stephen Hill: I've been impressed by folks looking to make the connection rather than looking to get the meeting. I think it's like, " Hey, yeah, 15 minutes this week." That's a waste of time for a lot of folks. It just stink. It smells of call center email, grind it out. I've been there and I've been on that side of the email. I've dialed for dollars. I know what it's like to be that outbound dialer, and so I get it. But I think it's always getting to that, " Hey, what's in it for you?" It is making sure that it's valuable for them. And I do connect with a lot of sales folks, especially when it's just like, " Hey, we'd love to just learn about how we can help each other out potentially. I have intelligence and expertise in this area. You add this, let's connect. Let's exchange our value." And maybe there's an opportunity there. But the thing that is just like, " Hey, you have 15 minutes real quick, quick question, quick question." One of the things I'm starting to think about a lot is the flip side of the quick question, it's never really a quick question, it's the idea of the slow question. And I think we need to start thinking and really going a little deeper on some of these bigger issues. And let's have a conversation about that slow question. I'd probably more likely to respond when somebody asks me the slow question rather than that quick question to get 15 minutes and I'll buy a cup of coffee just so you can pitch, pitch to me in 15 minutes. Well, maybe we have that slow question. We get into some deeper topics. And then, as humans, we're heavily connected, we start to understand where each of us, our puzzle pieces fit into our bigger puzzle. Those are the things I'm more likely to respond to.

Ajay Gupta: We're coming to the end of the podcast, so we'd like to get to know people at a personal level as well. So, outside of marketing, which I can tell you're very passionate about, what are some of the other hobbies? What do you like to do in your free time?

Stephen Hill: Well, any chance I have to play games with the wife and kids is the best. The kids are gamers at heart. But that gaming spirit, it goes well beyond digital. So, whether it's chess or backgammon, love puzzles. My eldest got really into speed cubing. So, now, we're all into speed cuing. And so, my wife and I can solve them pretty quick too, so love the puzzle solving. But then, it's things like give me a coat hanger and a wrench and a good documentary and I'll turn it into a little sculpture while I'm learning something new, that's always fun. I am a big gardener. I love plants. I love to see watch the garden grow. But I also love weird semi art science projects. My wife needed a new PC compatible computer around the holidays. We happened to have an old blue and white G3 Apple from 1999 sitting around in our museum of old tech. And I gutted it and turned it into a gaming PC for her. And it's a beautiful thing. So, we've got this beautiful blue and white, but it's fresh and clean. It's got some fun lights in there and it's real fast. So, things like that are great. Helping my eldest wire up the radio in their car, really, really fun. Where I really get even more passionate is in the space of crypto, Web3, virtual augmented reality worlds, new kinds of immersive experiences. I believe that we have a huge opportunity using these new types of tools to improve user experience, improve privacy, but also improve preference setting. Like I'm really passionate about how we make big decisions at scale that affect society and how we can do that faster, better, more inclusive. I don't feel like a lot of our systems today work for that, and I feel like we've got the tools to do it. So, one of my big passion things is, frankly, to develop a problem- solving community that uses these great tools to their best capability to make really inclusive, really well- informed, very large- scale solutions. Identify large scale solutions that could make money for people to our biggest problems. And move the conversation from problem identification, to solution identification and solution delivery just like we all do in marketing every day, but to some of our world's biggest problems. So, I think we got a lot of possibilities we could do. Very hopeful about where we can take things as a society. And I think if we all rally and are hopeful about it, we could do some amazing things as humans.

Vincent Pietrafesa: Well said, Stephen, this has been great. Again, as Ajay said, your passion shines through, multifaceted. Ladies and gentlemen, thank you for your take. Thank you for sharing your story, JLL Story. That's Stephen Hill, the Director of Demand and Digital Operations at JLL. That's Ajay Gupta. You know he is going to be in New York City. If you see him say hello. I'm Vincent Pietrafesa, this has been another episode of The Marketing Stir. Thank you so much for listening and we'll talk soon.

Vin: Thanks for listening to the Marketing Stir Podcast by Stirista. Please like rate and subscribe. If you're interested in being a guest on the podcast, please email us at themarketingstir @ stirista. com and thanks for listening.


Stephen Hill, the Director of Demand and Digital Operations at JLL, chats with us about a variety of channels that can be used for marketing and how data is more critical than ever these days.

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