We all know it: AI is all the rage. You can’t scour a blog or news site nowadays without reading about artificial intelligence this or artificial intelligence that. But what does this complexity (or even monstrosity) that is “AI” really mean, particularly for us marketers?
In short, AI for marketers means better business results. As July comes to a close, let’s review the top 3 articles that explore the convergence of AI + marketing:
Forbes Contributor AJ Agrawal explains that one of the primary ways marketers are using AI is to collect and analyze data. True—it’s crucial that B2C marketers listen to consumers by collecting data that points to their behaviors when interacting with brands across multiple channels and devices in real time. Behaviors like how they react to this push message or that email message, or how often they check out a landing page of a certain pair of jeans, or whether or not they abandon a filled shopping cart yet again. Marketers can leverage machine learning and AI to keep a pulse on a consumer’s situational information, implicit and explicit behaviors, and past purchase preferences, all at the individual consumer level. With this information, they can then efficiently market to these individuals with messages that speak to exactly the behaviors they performed and the preferences that can be gleaned from the behaviors. This way, marketers can ensure that any and all messages that consumers receive are relevant, contextual, and timely, working to grab the consumer’s attention and enticing them to engage.
This is a much better strategy than guessing at how to best communicate with a consumer. Inaccurate messaging leads to ignoring and unsubscribes…and even worse—negative brand perceptions. No brand can afford that.
2. The Business of Artificial Intelligence, Harvard Business Review
HBR contributors Erik Brynjolfsson and Andrew McAfee explain all the ways that AI can impact organizations, from tasks and occupations, to business processes, to business models. But they perhaps leave the best words of wisdom for the very end of the piece, where they declare that those organizations that are receptive to AI will be the ones to succeed in the future, and the others, well, will get left behind. They take this assertion one step further by saying that those people who embrace AI in their jobs are the ones who will be there in the end, too. “In the next decade, AI won’t replace managers, but managers who use AI will replace those who don’t.”
This makes sense when we hear that recent HBR research found that 57% of CMOs in particular remain in their roles for just a measly 3 years or less. Fifty-seven percent! Analysts agree that not taking advantage of new technologies like AI and machine learning to deliver unparallelled customer experiences led by personalization, which results in stronger KPIs, is the culprit behind these short job terms.
3. Imagining the Possibilities of Marketing and Artificial Intelligence, MarTech Today
In his article, author Rob Rasko hits on a key point: marketers must drop their reliance on demographic-based segmentation in favor of behavior-driven segmentation. The former tells us nothing about the individual’s personal preferences, wants, and needs. The latter, however, tells us everything about these crucial elements. Since consumers today are demanding a personalized experience with brands based on their own (and no one else’s) personal preferences, it has become a must (and not a nice-to-have) that marketers leverage new technologies like machine learning and AI to collect data, process it to glean insights about an individual’s behaviors, and then translate that into crafting messaging that takes their preferences into consideration.
Demographic-based segmentation still treats people as part of a herd and fails to drill down to who each person is and what would encourage them to listen and engage with a brand. Behavioral-based segmentation is the gateway to personalization. Behaviors point to preferences which enables brands to personalize which encourages consumers to respond.
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