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Spotlight on Mops-Apalooza 2023: Highlights from the Inaugural Event


The inaugural Mops-Apalooza event, featuring the MOPsCON virtual track, brought together MOPs professionals from across the globe for three days of knowledge sharing, important industry updates, and much needed networking.

The underlying theme of the week was the diverse MOPs community coming together after many years and sharing their cross platform knowledge and experiences, both in person and virtual engagement.

There’s too much to cover in one blog post, but we’re going to do our best! Here are some key trends, themes and tips we learned throughout the week.

Understanding AI for MOPs

Many sessions throughout the event tackled different perspectives on AI and how it will affect the work that MOPs does as we move forward. In the opening keynote, Scott Brinker highlighted the advantage leaders who use AI will have as it allows people to get more things done and with a higher quality. Many of the other sessions discussed how we can begin to leverage AI tools.

Paul Wilson’s Leading the AI Revolution session stressed the importance of planning and preparing for the transformations as they could radically impact MOPs roles. He encouraged attendees to reframe MOPs as the team that supports functions like lead routing, scoring, etc. rather than a team that supports specific tools. This will help ensure that as more vendors are selling AI technology, that we can influence decisions related to our areas of expertise.

In the AI and the Future of Marketing & Revenue Operations session, the panel discussed three main areas of impact from AI technology: focusing on visual and textual content, deep analysis and reporting capabilities, and automation with deep personalization. They explored how MOPs and RevOps should prepare for AI, including how to handle adoption of the tools. The panel suggested using AI similar to how we use Google to fact check information and confirm details, as well as making sure your team understands the guardrails when it involves PII.

In The Future is Now: Embracing the AI-Powered CRM Revolution, Connor Jeffers discussed the evolution of go-to-market strategies with AI, emphasizing the positive influence when AI is integrated into the tech stack rather than being a standalone solution. Connor shared a study that assessed the alignment between companies’ AI promotion and actual implementation which revealed that marketing teams are adopting AI faster than others, with teams meeting or exceeding goals being those embracing AI. Although the exact causation is unclear, he suggests the correlation may prompt a prioritization of AI adoption.

MOPs & Leadership

Beyond AI, the importance of ensuring your MOPs team is aligned with your CMO and leadership team was also a theme that ran throughout the event.

In the Translating Geek Speak to CMO Speak session, Jessica Kao and David Alexander discussed changing our approach when we talk with our CMOs. When we’re in budgeting conversations they suggest leading with the outcome the tool or technology will provide, not necessarily the tool itself. The CMO understands that enriched data will make for higher quality leads and why that matters to the team, but doesn’t necessarily care about the specific tool that does it. They also stressed providing just enough data to make a decision and instead of providing endless reports, focusing on actual insights including what’s working, what you should do more of and what you could do if you had more money.

Chloe Washington, Chief of Staff to the CMO at HubSpot, dove into How to Successfully Implement Change Within Your Organization Without Losing Your Mind, that walked through change management and how to identify when it’s time for a change. If your team is continually feeling the same pain points, things are taking too much time and employee satisfaction is low, it’s time to do something different. Beyond just the change taking place, Chloe shared the importance of the relationship component including meeting with resistors, getting your CMO/CEO to buy in and taking your plan on an internal roadshow.

The New Pillars of MOPs

As a part of the closing session, Darrell Alfonso introduced the new Pillars of MOPs, an evolution of Edward Unthank’s original Etumos philosophy. As the MOPs industry and roles continue to grow the original pillars were expanded to grow beyond just martech and include:

New Pillar Description
Technology Management Original pillars including platform, engineering and architects
Strategy Operations Strategy development, budget and planning
Enablement and PMO Process design, program management and adoption
Marketing Business Intelligence & Insights Original marketing intelligence pillar with addition of operational excellence

The overarching piece of the new pillars is key to success: a strong marketing operations leader. A strong leader will bring the four pillars together providing vision, transformation and innovation for the team.

Getting the most out of your tools

There were also a number of great sessions that dove into how to improve your customer lifecycle. Sydney Mulligan dove into the value of time stamps for entry/exit into initial processing, as well as when the sync to Salesforce happens. Ian Shields shared the concept of using a “Precluded” status for leads that never entered the sales cycle and saving “Disqualified” for those who entered the sales cycle, but were disqualified. This allows for a more accurate breakdown in channel reporting.

Corey Bayless focused on automating automation through API, velocity scripting and JavaScript and their use cases to get you to think outside of the box. He covered things like how to auto-create programs, forms and campaigns, as well as an auto shut off or turn on for campaigns.


We could go on and on about what we learned at MOps-Apalooza, but this only scratches the surface of the topics touched during the event. If you want to view these sessions and many more, you can access all of the on-demand and virtual sessions by purchasing a virtual pass here.

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