When people think of artificial intelligence (AI) today, they might think of computers that can talk to us like Alexa or Siri, or big projects like self-driving cars. These are very exciting and eye-catching, but the reality of AI is actually thousands of tools and apps working quietly behind the scenes, making our lives easier by automating simple tasks or making predictions.
This is true across all industries and business functions, and especially in marketing, where leveraging AI to present products and services to potential customers has been common practice for some time, although we don’t care. don’t always realize!
In business today, the term AI is used to describe software that can learn and improve at its job without human intervention. This means that even though we have become accustomed to using machines to help us lift heavy loads, now they can also start to help us with tasks that require thought and decision-making.
A lot of questions that previously would have taken human intervention to answer – like “Will this person be interested in my products?” or “what results will I get from this ad campaign?” can now be answered by machines – if they receive the correct data. And because machines can answer questions much faster than humans, they can easily string together complex chains of queries to arrive at predictions, such as who is most likely to buy your products and where the best places are. to advertise.
This is the basic principle of all enterprise AI today: to automate learning and decision-making processes in order to create knowledge (usually called “insights”) that helps improve performance. And marketing is one area where it has certainly been put to good use!
The high-level use case for AI in marketing is that it improves ROI by making your marketing — often one of a company’s biggest expenses — more effective. In the past, before online advertising, companies paid huge sums of money for advertisements on television, radio or newspapers, knowing full well that only a small number of people who saw their advertisements would become customers. It was extremely inefficient, but companies had no choice if they wanted to position themselves as market leaders.
In the online age, we have developed the ability to learn a lot about who is or is not interested in our products and services. Early breakthroughs came through companies like Amazon with their recommendation engine technology and Google and Facebook with their targeted advertising platforms. Today, each of these platforms has been supplemented with machine learning technology that allows them to become increasingly efficient as they receive more data about customers and their buying habits.
AI-based content marketing
The rise in social media marketing and our growing appetite for online content has made content-based marketing the dominant form of marketing in many industries. AI helps us here by helping us determine the type of content that interests our customers and potential customers and the most effective ways to distribute our content to them. Ad creatives have always struggled to find formulas to create ads that will get people talking and share the message with their friends. Now, this can be done automatically using any number of AI-powered tools. For example, headline generation algorithms that monitor their success and adjust their output for better metrics, such as email open rate or social media post share rate.
Going one step further, the AI is developing the ability to take over the entire content generation process, creating texts and images that it knows are likely to be well received by its audience. A huge buzzword in this space will be personalization – where individual customers receive content that is specifically tailored to them, perhaps using insights and benchmarks that the AI knows are relevant to them. , intertwined with global marketing messages.
AI will also be increasingly useful in identifying what stage of the buying process a customer is at. If it detects that they are “shopping around” – comparing available products and services – it may deliver content designed to differentiate your product or service from those of competitors. If it senses they’re ready to make a purchase, it can target them with promotions inviting them to “act now” to take advantage of a limited-time offer.
A digital marketing agency called 123 Internet has embraced ongoing industry developments using various AI-based technologies to improve service delivery. Scott Jones, CEO said:
“We have been using AI tools for some time now, especially automatic verification of website designs in hundreds of screen types and browsers, it speeds up our design and development process.”
Their team also uses generated AI website audit which can be downloaded from their website and works without human interaction.
Influencers are another big trend in marketing right now, and AI algorithms are already being used to ensure that the personalities most likely to interest you appear in your search results and social feeds.
Increasingly, advertisers will also use AI to identify smaller influencers who are most likely to mingle with their brands and audiences. This has led to the emergence of “micro-influencers” – usually everyday people, rather than celebrities, who have specialist knowledge which they have used to create a niche audience that cares about their opinion. AI enables businesses to find micro-influencers with the right audiences for them, across a wide range of niches and audience segments. AI helps establish when it makes sense to pay 100 people $1,000 to talk about their product, rather than paying Justin Bieber or a Kardashian $100,000. Again, this is about creating efficiency by tracking data, rather than just doing what a marketer thinks or deems to be the best plan.
AI in CRM
Customer relationship management is an essential function for any marketer to master, as existing customers are often a company’s most important source of revenue. Here, AI can be used to reduce the risk of customer “churn” – by identifying behavior patterns that may lead customers to move elsewhere. These customers can then be automatically targeted with personalized promotions or incentives to hopefully restore their loyalty. AI-augmented marketers are also increasingly turning to chatbot technology, powered by natural language processing. This can segment incoming customer requests, meaning those who need a quick response can be attended to urgently, to minimize dissatisfaction. AI-based CRM will also allow businesses to more accurately forecast sales in all markets a business operates in, meaning inventory and resources can be distributed more efficiently. Additionally, it can be used to maintain data quality in the CRM system, by identifying customer records where errors or duplicates are likely to exist.
The future of the marketer
If you work in marketing, you’d be forgiven for worrying that we’re heading into a future where humans in your role are redundant. You can take courage, however, to current forecast that state AI will end up creating more jobs than it destroys. It is inevitable that your job will change, however. Marketers will spend less time on technical tasks such as forecasting or customer segmentation and more time on creative and strategic tasks. Those who are skilled at working with technology and identifying new technology solutions as they become available will be extremely valuable to their business and are likely to have a bright future!