Aimclear Takeoff – End of an era?

Posted in Aimclear News & Events

Friends, it is bittersweet to announce my departure from Aimclear after nearly a decade.

Sparing abundant nostalgia, I would be remiss to leave the company and the community I’ve cared for so deeply without thoughts, thanks, and, (of course) content.

Gratitude

I couldn’t be more grateful for the rocket-laced start Aimclear provided my career. Where I am now is because of the shoulders I stood upon, and the support I had.

In 2009 Marty Weintraub took a chance on plucky, and possibly overwhelmed, recent UMD marketing grad thanks, in part, to two advocates: Manny Rivas III, now dad to (predictably) Minnesota’s cutest baby, Aimclear’s CMO (and my friend); and John Kratz, a professor at UMD who had written a letter of recommendation for me (impress your profs, kids – it pays off [yes, go ahead and show this to your kids]). John likened me to not just a bulldog (UMD!) but a workhorse as well (he was right).

Since then, I’ve worked with some of the most amazing people, both as coworkers and clients (and clients who became coworkers and coworkers who became clients). Reminiscing here would be an injustice to the swell of memories and thanks I have for you all. (I’m not crying)

I honestly can’t thank you enough. You all are the hardest part about leaving.

Humility

Shortly after starting at Aimclear (really, learning about SEO & how the Internet works), Marty took me along to SMX West to write conference coverage.

Wow. You all blew me away with your passion, marketing savvy (especially back when black hats would still attend—y’all are wild), and warmth.

Then, I could only wish to be a part of that community of speakers—experts in their field. I barely knew sh*t, and you all demonstrated with expert talks how much more there was to know, how deep it can really get, how daunting this world could be, and were fearless in sharing your knowledge. More importantly, I realized there was freedom in pioneering an industry as we did. What it takes to steward precious brands in the tumultuous tide of Internet marketing isn’t having all the answers; rather it’s ingenuity, perseverance, and aptitude. The freedom this lawlessness still provides is, frankly, exhilarating and what made me fall in love. Don’t worry friends, as process is refined and taken over by AI, technology will always evolve—there will be a new wild west for us to -exploit- *ahem* discover and dominate. 🙂 I can’t wait to see what you all do.

And I can’t believe we follow each other on Twitter and I get to call many of you friends.

Burning questions:

What’s next, Merry?

As many know, I’ve been at Uber HQ in San Francisco on contract on behalf of Aimclear for the past 15 months, managing Rider initiatives. I’ll be taking on a full time role continuing my work at Uber (with a personal initiative of closing the loop between data and creative).

I’ve been inspired and awestruck by the martech being developed at Uber, and am proud to join a team of badass social marketers: Katie, Kevin, Alyssa, and Brenda, I can’t wait to strike out on this new journey with you!

Ten years. Wow. What made you stay at Aimclear for a decade?

Aimclear was, and is, family to me. Loyalty is just in me. As much as I love an adventure and discovering what else is out there, I recognize the joy and security that comes with something that’s familiar. It also doesn’t hurt when the “familiar” is marketing on the cutting edge on behalf of a swath of brands. I’ll never not talk about pioneering Facebook ads for Martha Stewart Omni, a Hollywood criminal defense attorney, and minor Bravo celebrity. Or Second Life (remember Second Life?!??). Or how we sold oscilloscopes to MIT through right rail Facebook ads. Or being a part of Airbnb’s Wall and Chain campaign, and that time I crafted Caviar ads for couch events. And working with industry legends like Anne Kennedy, Gillian Muessig, Frederick Vallaeys, and more.

Importantly: Aimclear believed in me, and trusted me, which gave me ownership and confidence.

This was more than just a job for me. Trust.

Will you be speaking at conferences?

I’d love to!

Speaking at conferences—developing friendships and mentorships with the community—has been a paramount joy in my career thus far and I’d be pleased as punch. My DMs are open.

In the meantime, I’ll be speaking at MAU Vegas—Mobile Apps Unlocked—with my Uber Driver counterpart, Alyssa Wagner, and Smartly’s Martin Kilp (I may have already re-written the session title and description…).

What was most rewarding?

Marty

What was most challenging?

Marty

In all seriousness, working under the tutelage of, and alongside, Marty has been incredibly rewarding. I’ve had some of the most crushing career moments—but he never let me crash—and some of my most illuminating and fun career moments. I’m so fortunate to have such a mentor. That challenge has made me stronger, smarter, and more understanding.

You’ve seen the inside—would you hire Aimclear as an agency?

One-hundred percent. Aimclear is not only special in that Marty totally sees the Internet matrix five years ahead of the curve (at least), he’s also hired whip smart professionals who know how to interpret Marty’s prophecies, and to their credit are cutting their own edges.

Yo, what they’re doing with Search PPC would rock your world.

I’d definitely pay for the thickness of talent in that agency.

Last thoughts?

I thought this was it.

Maybe this is how it starts.

 

  • Marty Weintraub

    Merry,
    Wishing you safe travels & blue skies in your new Uber gig & on the Eightfold Path. I’m proud of what we’ve accomplished together. 🔥 Give em’ hell Merry.

    PS, I believe the first conference was SES Chicago.

  • David Iwanow

    Merry you are always an amazing source of energy and looking forward to see you “drive” you career forward. Looking forward to seeing you speaking again in Europe soon.

  • Doc Sheldon

    A very touching farewell, Mary. I imagine Marty is torn – partly sad to see you leave, partly happy for you. I hope your tenure at Uber is as fulfilling as the last ten years at Aimclear… hopefully, Uber knows they’re following a tough act!
    Break a leg!

  • Bob Stanke

    Congrats, Merry! Nothing but the best to you in your new gig!

  • Charlie

    I thought it said deep psychedelic audience research 😱. That would be interesting. Congratulations on the new position.

  • Matt McGowan

    SES, SMX, what’s the difference? 😘 Love reading posts like this. Best of luck to you both… those who embrace change will continue to flourish. Until our paths cross again.

  • John Kratz

    Merry
    I’ve admired the incredible growth in your amazing personal presence, the ability to command a room taking center stage, and the ridiculous amount of knowledge you’ve mastered in the digital marketing space while at AimClear. I’ve inspired many a student with your story. I wish you the very best with your new gig at Uber and plan on following the new chapter in your life journey. Thank you Marty for giving Merry a shot at the big leagues as well as the other UMD Bulldogs you’ve hired over the years.
    Best
    John

  • Rajiv Vaidyanathan

    Merry,

    You and so many other marketing grads at Aimclear have made us #UMDProud. I have admired your success at Aimclear and have seen your growth. I still remember well what you were like on that India adventure we shared when you were in School. You deserve all the success you have had and still have coming to you. Work hard and flag the #UMDLabovitzMarketing flag high at Uber.

    Don’t forget us!

    Sincerely,

    Rajiv

  • Beth Probst

    Merry,
    Best of luck. You were always one of my favorite speakers at Zenith. I hope you can still find time to travel back to the great city of the north to share what’s new in the world of creative.

  • Merry

    It was definitely was out west in San Jose—I have very vivid memories, (just forget the series), Lisa & Derek were our guest bloggers + me. And we hosted a tequila-laced schmoozefest. (So it must have been SMX? yeah?)

    (SES Chi was later—that’s where McGowan took his last session to the pub. The coverage from that was GREAT!)

    Ahhh, memories <3

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