Is AI death knell for Marketing?

Author: Sanjeev Thakkar

Designation: Sr. Manager: Marketing and Brand Communications

Is AI (Artificial Intelligence…duh!) going to change the way we do marketing too?

That’s something I read and felt like digging deeper. Being a marketer shall I feel threatened? ‘Marketing is Next’ read one of the columns on Curata with a quote,

Marc Benioff, CEO and founder of Salesforce, told Fortune that marketing is in an “AI spring,” and that “data science will fundamentally change how we run our business because we’re going to have computers aiding us in how we’re interacting with our customers.”

Thank you artificial intelligence for enlightening us, pre-millennials.

So, let me get this straight – AI is an umbrella term to describe a suite of unique, but related, technologies at varying degrees of maturity. These include, as I have understood – machine learning, deep learning, neural networks, natural language processing (NLP), and natural language generation (NLG) among others…hmm Okay.

It looks artificial intelligence is helping people in industries – marketing among them – to enhance their work and processes. Marketers are using AI to help improve programmatic advertising, boost social feeds, strengthen e-commerce, and otherwise hone and improve the effectiveness of messaging on multiple platforms.

…that’s not so much threatening as supportive, I suppose!

Thanks to the explosion in data consumption (with video), nearly 90 percent of all the data in the world has been created in the last two years or so. As a result, marketers are also drowning in information overload. Marketers have access to data from dozens of sources including social listening, web analytics, emails, marketing leads, sales, advertising, and remarketing among other.

But human beings, however, have a finite ability to process information, build strategy and plan based on that information, and create content at scale for dissemination. Artificial intelligence systems, in contrast, have an almost infinite ability to process data and deliver predictions, recommendations, and content—better, faster, and cheaper. And they don’t sleep, eat or fall sick (may be!).

Handling big, big data. While the humans take a break from work, some other part of the world is alive and clicking through. This life is creating data worth gold. So how does your marketing activation absorb the real-time insights and respond? AI can do the work, going into minute details in much smaller increments, much more quickly.

Gawking for bids. It’s humanly almost impossible to keep managing increment bids in an advertising plan. But machines are more than happy to constantly monitor rafts of data and test bids in fractions of a penny, adjusting every moment, 24 hours a day. Then again, they don’t even take bio-breaks.

Encouraging click-throughs. It is now a public knowledge that the social media behemoth uses AI to help optimize placement of ads and content in people’s newsfeeds.

Evolving chatbots. Brands are building chatbots to deliver information and experiences and to generate e-commerce transactions. AI increasingly is able to mimic human interaction.

Optimizing campaigns. Creative optimization can align creative components in such an order that can show a hot coffee Ad to someone on the breezy altitudes and a nice iced tea in the same instant to a guy on the beach. AI can also zero in on target groups and constantly adjust for a marketer’s goals. As consumers respond to campaigns, the more machines learn, giving marketers smarter data and the opportunity to improve personalization.

Marketing Transformation

Marketing Transformation providers, like digifacets, know better that today’s buyer is hyper-connected in real time via multiple devices and channels to an endless tirade of information including brand-generated, media-generated content and consumer-generated. This buyer isn’t waiting for anyone to tell him what to do next. He’s creating his own, often circuitous, path. Marketers no longer have full control over the message, the medium, or the buyer journey.

For thought leaders in data intelligence and technology like AI, which listens and responds in real time, the opportunity is big since the emphasis has progressed from analysis to prediction, prescription, and now driving the automation. As a result, we see a future where our marketers become more strategic, capable, and profit-focused. You Bet!!