HBR: Growing Majority of Execs Say Benefits of Generative AI Outweigh Risks

Survey of 1,000-plus executives reveals rapid adoption rate

Read time: 2.5 minutes

Hi AI Pro!

A growing majority (78%) of executive leaders believe the long-term benefits of Generative AI outweigh its risks, according to a new survey published in Harvard Business Review.


  • Top news of the day: Snowflake Acquires Marketing Data Compliance Startup Samooha

  • Startup News: AI Email Marketing Platform Stensul Raises $34.5 Million of VC

  • Today’s Top AI Marketing Trend: HBR: Growing Majority of Execs Say Benefits of Generative AI Outweigh Risks

  • Today’s Master Marketing Tip: Dharmesh Shah, CTO & Co-Founder, HubSpot


Snowflake Acquires Marketing Data Compliance Startup Samooha 

Snowflake a provider of technology that enhances data privacy, interoperability, and access capabilities for marketers, has acquired Samooha, a startup that provides tools for both developers and non-techie business users who work with industry-specific analysis templates.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed, but Snowflake was previously an investor in Samooha, reportedly taking a 25% stake in the company in February, at a $40 million valuation.

Samooha reportedly plans to move beyond marketing applications, although many if not most of its earliest clients are marketers that use Samooha’s data “clean room” tools to segment audiences for targeting and campaign attribution.

“When businesses share sensitive first-party data with outside partners or customers, they must do so in a way that meets strict governance requirements around security and privacy,” according to an announcement from Snowflake about the acquisition.

“Data clean rooms have emerged as the technology to meet this need, enabling interoperability where multiple parties can collaborate on and analyze sensitive data in a governed way without exposing direct access to the underlying data and business logic,”

With the acquisition, Samooha’s co-founders CEO Kamakshi Sivaramakrishnan and CTO Abhishek Bhowmick are both joining Snowflake’s leadership team


AI Email Marketing Platform Stensul Raises $34.5 Million of VC

Stensul, a provider of email marketing solutions, has raised $34.5 million in its third round of venture capital, which was led by Sageview Capital and included participation from the company’s existing investors.

Stensul’s platform supports creation and collaboration among teams for marketing emails and landing pages, with no-code tools that also ensure adherence to brand guidelines. The company says its solutions enable content library management and integrations that “break down silos between creation and design.”

According to Stensul, Cisco has used its platform to save 26,000 marketing hours per month, “freeing skillful marketers from tedious back-and-forth, reallocating all that time to do testing, try new strategies, and ultimately seeing the resulting performance metrics significantly increase.”

The Chicago Bulls also deployed Stensul and saw the team’s email-attributable ticketing revenue leap by 550%, according to Stensul.


HBR: Growing Majority of Execs Say Benefits of Generative AI Outweigh Risks

A new survey report in Harvard Business Review authored by a team from Gartner Research reveals that a growing majority (78%) of executive leaders believe the long-term benefits of the technology outweigh its risks.

The survey of 1,000-plus executives inquired into which organizational functions were investing in generative AI and discovered that all departments were contemplating the technology, but some exhibited more certainty about its risks-versus-benefits than others.

IT and customer-facing functions, such as marketing, customer service, and sales, were more inclined to invest in generative AI initiatives, as opposed to administrative functions like HR, legal, or finance, according to the report. Business leaders outside of IT, on average, planned to allocate a substantial 6.5% of their budgets to generative AI in 2024.

In a separate Gartner survey of 1,400 executives conducted in the third quarter of 2023 revealed that 45% reported their organizations were piloting or experimenting with generative AI, with an additional 10% having already deployed solutions.

To put that stat in perspective, when similar questions were asked in March and April 2023, only 4% of organizations had gone live with generative AI, while 70% were still in the investigative phase.

For executive leaders, risk mitigation ranks as their foremost priority, according to the survey, including “hallucinations,” factual inaccuracies, data breaches, privacy concerns, security lapses, attribution issues, copyright violations, and biased information.

Still, as of the November survey, only 39% of organizations had a formal written corporate policy, and less than half (43%) had a legal and/or intellectual property policy in place.


“Many companies have forgotten they sell to actual people. Humans care about the entire experience, not just the marketing or sales or service. To really win in the modern age, you must solve for humans.”

— Dharmesh Shah, CTO & Co-Founder, HubSpot

Dharmesh Shah co-founded HubSpot in 2005, after serving as founder and CEO of the software company Pyramid Digital Solutions, was acquired by SunGard Data Systems in 2005. He’s also an author and active angel investor.

Through his serial-entrepreneur career, Shah has gained a personal net worth somewhere in the neighborhood of $1 billion.

When it comes to marketing philosophy, the HubSpot exec emphasizes the importance of adopting an integrated, holistic view that accounts for a customer’s entire experience with a brand across every touchpoint, combined.


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