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Machine learning: Focus on “What to do” rather than “How it works”

Artificial intelligence & machine learning are of great help for our activities. However, many still do not use it because of a lack of understanding. The good news? Marketers and sales reps do not need to actually understand how it works. This is what Cassie Kozyrkov, Chief Decision Intelligence Engineer at Google explained during the Stockholm Tech Fest. Read on to know more.


Machine learning is like microwave ovens

Cassie Kozyrkov, Chief Decision Intelligence Engineer at Google started her pitch with one statement:

You know what to do and not do with a microwave and yet you probably do not know how to build it from scratch. Do the same thing with Machine learning.”

When discussing implementing machine learning in business strategies, a bit of excitement and a lot of fears arise. Kozyrkov explained that most of our fears regarding Machine learning stem from who code it (and science fiction).

A bit like if you were to listen to microwave builders: it sounds really complex how they create it. All the principles inside it sounds way out of your league. Nice piece of innovation but too complex to add it into your processes.

However as Kozyrkov put it, coders are very good at building it but the ones who will use it to cook great projects are marketers and sellers.

stockholm tech fest google 2

But do you build microwaves or do you use them?

Microwave ovens save a lot of time in today’s industrial kitchens despite the fears it brought in its early years. Today, almost every cook has a microwave oven in their kitchen. I bet most cooks do not know how to build nor fix it.

Machine learning will become every marketers and sellers’ microwave. It is already built-in in most of your current softwares and platforms, so why not start making the most out of it?

To finish with the microwave analogy, we do not need to understand in details the bits and pieces of Machine learning or Artificial Intelligence. But we do need to understand how to use it, what to expect from it and what to put in it to get the results we want. 

This implies training and tuning, success and errors. In the beginning it might be a bit like the first time you put a spoon in the microwave or the results you got after your first customer journey. But in the end, it will help you a great deal in shortening your strategy cooking time.

google talk on decision machine learning

Turn your Machine Learning on

To get started with Machine Learning, ask your marketing & sales platforms what they have available. Salesforce & Oracle have developed strong solutions that permeate in their entire platform.

Or you can also get started by:


To know more about Cassie Kozyrkov: Read her Medium here or Follow her on Twitter @quaesita.

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