Mobile advertising budgets are forecasted to exceed TV in many key markets in 2019, with 80% of that growth made in just the last 5 years – driven largely by video and social mobile platforms. Moreover, eCommerce has grown more than 60% in the last 6 years. These are just two small indicators of the huge change in consumption habits that is driving the need for transformation. We need AI to enable our teams to deal with the scale of this change and its complexity.
Let’s look at three challenging areas as examples:
- A content explosion: This growth of social and video advertising across multiple channelsand multiple platforms means a huge growth in the amount of content required. How can your team manage this efficiently and effectively on a global scale?
- Mass personalisation: Consumers are inundated with messages, across all of these platforms. How do we as marketers make sure that they get the most relevant one, at the most relevant time, across the most relevant channel?
- Always on: Consumers use the Internet 24/7, so brands need to be there with their consumer. This may be in the form of Content Marketing but also a live interaction with them to answer any questions that they may have through one-to-one chat.
What is AI and how can it help?
Artificial Intelligence (AI) is “the theory and development of computer systems able to perform tasks normally requiring human intelligence, such as visual perception, speech recognition, decision-making, and translation between languages.” One can classify this across 4 areas: the perceiving, thinking, And both acting as and interacting with humans.
And each of these apply to marketing right now:
The “perceiving” aspect of AI includes image recognition and natural language processing, and helps you deal with the ‘content explosion’: If you are a global brand with terabytes of content distributed across tens of markets, how do you know that the digital asset you are creating doesn’t already exist in a different country, called a different name, in a different language. Often you don’t and this means you end up recreating thousands of assets at a huge expense.
Image and video recognition can help you find this asset – AI automatically tags the images appropriately (Meta Data). Natural Language Processing and Machine Translation means that even if it is in a different language, or the product has been labelled as “Path” and the search term you are using is “Sidewalk”, you can still find it. Functionality like this may be found in MRM and DAM technology solutions such as Aprimo and Censhare. The “Thinking” aspect of AI enables mass personalisation: This is the realm of Machine Learning and Decision Making – algorithms that can learn from previous behaviours, activities and events.
One scenario is where you have a user journey and you need to show that user the next piece of information that they need, based on intent that they have already expressed through previous behaviour. This message is optimised in real time to that individual. This dynamic optimisation is applied across programmatic as well as on-site and in-app experiences – this enables substantially higher conversion/retention rates than other more manual optimisation techniques,and is not possible without AI. This kind of functionality may be found in DCO technologies such as such Sizmek and Celtra.
Netflix estimate $1bn of revenue has been saved through AI preventing cancelled subscriptions by optimising personalised recommendations.
“Acting” enables the intelligent response to questions from your consumers, day and night – always on: This moves us into the world of bots; enabling the real-time human-like interaction with customers or potential customers. Although in a survey conducted last year half of Americans would prefer to communicate with a human than a chat bot, the immediate response and the 24 hour nature of the service are seen as major benefits.
From a People perspective this is not taking over people’s jobs or downgrading them. The opposite in fact, as according to a Gartner report, by 2020 AI will create more jobs than it disrupts.
AI is the essential ingredient in today’s digital marketing landscape, and so what can you do to make the most of it?
- Look across the whole marketing area to see where AI can help
- Identify high gain, low cost areas to focus on…and run a test. From this you’ll tangibly measure the return
- Whether it’s a DAM, DCO tech or reporting technology…regardless of the application, when looking to select new technology remember to actively investigate how it is or can be AI powered and the value that adds.
Find out more about how Flock can help with your martech needs here.