Trigger marketing impact thanks to artificial intelligence

  • Artificial intelligence has the ability to dramatically improve the potency of marketing and marketers around the world are embracing the potential of AI to better engage with consumers, while improving the customer experience.
  • Sarin Menoky, Manager – Thought Leadership Marketing, Infosys BPM writes about the opportunities AI presents for marketers and what the future looks like.

Marketing is an industry that has the most to gain from artificial intelligence (AI). Basically, the goal of marketing is to understand the needs of customers, match them with relevant products and services, and persuade people to buy. AI has the ability to dramatically improve the power of marketing. A 2018 McKinsey study of over 400 use cases involving advanced AI techniques found that marketing was the function where AI had the greatest potential. And according to a Salesforce report, from 2018 to 2020, the adoption of AI by marketers saw a whopping 186% increase.

What can AI do for marketing?

AI-based marketing uses technology to improve the customer experience. AI collects large and diverse amounts of data on customer sentiment, transactions, journeys and all the rest, and uses it to create machine learning and predictive algorithms on customer behavior. The goal is to develop customer acquisition and retention strategies, and to generate personalized content, recommendations and communications. AI promises precise, fast, adaptive and human decisions that will reduce costs, increase revenue, and improve customer satisfaction and experience.

Channeling AI for the Marketing Spectrum

While machines have yet to master compassion and empathy, AI can still take care of many other things. It can eliminate human errors in digital marketing, streamline and optimize marketing campaigns, and generate data-driven reports. For example, the personalized email marketing that most of us are familiar with is largely AI-driven.

Advertising is increasingly focused on specific and targeted messages. Digital advertising can be driven by AI. Google Ads is one example. AI continues to completely revamp the way businesses advertise. Programmatic advertising uses complex algorithms and big data to serve the right kind of ads to the right audience. Studies have shown that click-through rates for AI-powered ads are significantly higher than ads written by humans, with the increase in some cases even exceeding 400%. Of course, AI-based ads will only be as good as the data provided.

Content marketing rules the modern business world, and AI can be of great help in this area. The success of AI lies in its ability to organize and generate the right content for different audiences. Businesses use AI to recommend personalized products and services to their customers. Natural Language Processing (NLP) is an AI technology that can transform data to generate effective and compelling stories. The Associated Press and the Washington Post are well-known users of NLP. The technology can also be used effectively by retailers to personalize landing pages and generate tailored product placements.

AI-powered chatbots are smart and can generate original responses to communicate with humans. They are commonly used in customer support, lead generation, as well as cross-selling and upselling. Although used by several companies, many chatbots are still quite rudimentary. A plethora of organizations around the world are investing heavily in this area.

Customer behavior analysis

The internet generates a huge amount of data that can predict customer behavior, but it’s virtually impossible for humans to analyze everything. Here, AI provides the perfect solution. It can provide in-depth information about customer preferences. Netflix is ​​one example; it uses machine learning algorithms to recommend movies and shows to its users.

Dynamic AI-based pricing can be used to predict how much a customer is willing to pay for a product or service. Companies even use algorithms to allow prices to be changed in real time. One example is fare surges on Uber after a major event or related to weather conditions.

In digital marketing, image recognition improves brand experiences. The popular “like item” option on shopping sites helps customers with potentially relevant products, while improving revenue per user of e-commerce sites. Similar decision support technologies are also used for security profiling.

The challenges of AI-based marketing

Integrating AI into a workflow requires a deep understanding and careful integration of machine and human tasks, so that AI improves people’s skills and doesn’t hamper processes. For example, some chatbots could be ineffective and cause customer dissatisfaction. To avoid potentially costly mistakes, businesses should be aware not to let chatbots have the final say on the customer experience. Companies must develop and acquire the appropriate skills required to implement every AI application with success and impact.

At the end of the day, it’s about trust. Customers on digital platforms are aware of risks such as data breaches; they need high levels of privacy and security. Many are reluctant to use apps that capture and share location information, often without their knowledge. It is also true that many are willing to share personal information to take advantage of the innovative amenities offered by virtual assistant technologies like Alexa. Therefore, companies must ensure transparency when collecting all personal data in exchange for sophisticated AI-based services. AI initiatives need to be ethically approved by companies to ensure safety and earn customer trust.

The future looks exciting

It’s true that AI in marketing attracts a lot of investment, but it’s just a start overall. Marketing managers need to be realistic about the ROI that AI technologies can currently deliver. Beneath all the glamor and clamor, AI capabilities are still limited to certain marketing activities, not necessarily the entire function. Yes, AI-powered digital marketing capabilities are developing rapidly, but it won’t be a quick ride to the finish line. It will take time, patience and trust. AI strategies created today and executed robustly will pay off in the future.

Companies should be prepared to work on developing their long-term AI capabilities, while addressing potential challenges. A human-ware approach, which can bring out the best of digital and human capabilities, is ideal. It can help businesses become inherently responsive, react with agility, make every interaction hyper-productive and value-added – by behaving like a live business. Interesting times lie ahead for the confluence of AI and marketing.

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