Artificial intelligence is proving integral to the digital products of tomorrow, and nowhere is that more true than in the marketing space. A new wave of startups are leveraging AI in their marketing platforms, and industry heavyweights are beginning to take notice as well. Companies like Amazon and Apple are even leveraging artificial intelligence to conduct voice-based marketing through devices like their Alexa and Siri platforms, respectively. This is only one use case of AI, but it’s illustrative of how the technology can help shape consumers’ buying behavior and help them make better purchase decisions.
A year or two ago, artificial intelligence was seen as a novelty by marketers, and not many were integrating the technology into their own applications. AI was merely a “nice to have” feature for many platforms, rather than being an integral piece of functionality. This year though, we’ve seen a marked shift in how marketers approach AI, and it’s clear that increasingly marketers are using artificial intelligence as an everyday utility to supercharge their marketing efforts, rather than as a simple novelty to gain a press headline or two.
Despite all of the talk about AI and its potential for transforming the way marketers interact with consumers, it’s often difficult to know where to begin leveraging the technology for one’s marketing strategy. This is a seriously fast-moving industry, and marketers who don’t keep up with the latest developments on the AI front will risk being left behind by their competitors. With that in mind, we’ve taken a look at some of the emerging AI trends that are set to define the space for marketers in the months and years ahead, while analyzing how they might fit into marketing strategies for organizations in the future.
AI will make content creation more efficient than ever
One of the key value propositions of AI for marketers is that it reduces the cognitive workload involved with performing everyday tasks, but it can also be incredibly useful for producing creative content as well. In the future, using AI to fuel content creation likely will be a normal part of marketers’ everyday workflow. The beauty of artificial intelligence is that it can help create relevant marketing content based on dozens of inputs – from raw data, to targeting and segmentation criteria. The concept of AI-produced creative copy isn’t so far-fetched – in fact, several top-tier news organizations (including the Associated Press and Washington Post) are already using AI-based solutions to automatically file news reports from the field.
Solutions like Articoolo and Quill already make it easier than ever to create fantastic content on the fly using AI, and for marketers looking to scale their content creation without increasing headcount, tools like these could be incredibly useful. Instead of having to shell out big money for a content agency or a team of writers, companies can now use AI-powered creative tools to make their marketing content faster (and more creatively) than ever.
Email marketing can leverage AI for more personalized content
In addition to content creation, AI can also assist marketers in scaling their email marketing efforts. When using inputs like audience and segmentation data, AI-based marketing platforms will be able to automatically create content that is dynamically personalized to whoever is viewing it. Having dynamically personalized content will also boost open rates. Imagine being able to send out a single email campaign where the subject line of each email is tailored to each recipients’ interests and buying patterns. Being able to do advanced personalization at such a granular level is extremely powerful, and marketers would do well to begin investigating ways to leverage AI’s personalization capabilities within their own organizations.
But beyond just content personalization, AI can also help marketers optimize their campaigns for maximum revenue potential. Instead of conducting lengthy A/B tests and analyzing the results weeks after the fact, marketers can now use tools like Phrasee to analyze and optimize their marketing campaigns on the fly. Artificial intelligence can help marketers optimize every piece of the email campaign process, all the way down to the optimal time of day to send out to each lead in one’s database. With the dawn of AI-based email marketing solutions, weeks-long A/B tests are set to become a thing of the past. This is all great news for marketers.
AI can help increase conversion rates on the web
By definition, AI-enabled software platforms are constantly learning, analyzing, and improving. Now is the perfect time for marketers to put that technology to work not just in email campaigns, but on the web as well. AI-powered site search is quickly becoming a de facto requirement for most ecommerce businesses, and other organizations are quickly following suit. By leveraging artificial intelligence to surface product recommendations and helpful tips to consumers where (and when) they need them the most, brands and retailers can continue to build brand loyalty and trust across the entire customer experience.
But beyond just creating a better search experience for consumers, brands and retailers can also design AI-powered digital experiences for their customers that act as a conversion funnel in their own right. One such example is cosmetic giant Olay’s skin care analysis tool, which uses deep learning to analyze its customers skin, and then makes recommendations on which skin care products to buy based on an AI-powered matching engine developed by Nara Logistics, a Boston-based AI startup. Within months of launching the tool, Olay had reportedly increased its average order value by more than 40% in some markets. Building an AI-powered digital marketing asset like this is a significant time investment, but if executed properly, can have a dramatically positive impact on one’s bottom line.
Use cases like these reinforce why marketers should start thinking about how to integrate AI into the customer experience today. The world’s leading brands are already beginning to leverage the technology in their own marketing funnels, and the positive results are undeniable.
Make digital advertising more efficient and personalized
With the advent of AI, digital advertising capabilities are set to become more efficient and personalized across all industries. One of the biggest use cases for AI in the digital advertising space is that it will enable brands and retailers to minimize wastage of their ad spend. Much of ad wastage can be attributable to ad fraud conducted by bots online, and AI-based digital advertising solutions can help marketers identify potential threats before they occur and avoid them. This ensures that advertising dollars are spent only on genuine consumer views.
In addition, AI-powered advertising platforms can leverage machine learning capabilities to optimize ad campaigns mid-cycle. Rather than having to wait for a given campaign to finish before analyzing its results, marketers will now be able to make optimizations in real-time based on the recommendations offered up by their marketing automation platform’s AI capabilities.
Artificial intelligence is clearly sparking a revolution in the digital marketing space. It’s still the early days, but it’s already proved key to a number of innovative use cases for the technology. Particularly on the content creation front, AI is quickly rising to become a viable contender with humans on some types of creative. The scope of the technology’s usage in the content space will only increase as more companies develop innovative algorithms to create ever more compelling content at the push of a button.
These are exciting times for marketers, and it will be intriguing to see what innovations take place in the AI space in the coming months. As AI technology continues to advance, marketers will have the unique opportunity to understand and connect with their consumers on a deeper level than ever before. Not only that, but AI is poised to become commonplace in the months and years ahead – meaning that now is the perfect time for marketers to begin thinking about how to integrate AI into their own marketing efforts.