Remember ‘big data’ and ‘advanced analytics’? These trends gradually evolved over the past decade as more and more businesses jumped on the bandwagon. This ultimately paved the way for the next truly revolutionary tool in marketing: Artificial Intelligence (AI).
Read on to discover examples of how AI is changing what’s possible in marketing. AI can help marketing leaders contribute more to their company’s revenue growth while minimizing overhead expense. Not sure if it’s right for you? Take this simple AI Implementation Checklist.
Prospect Targeting – Segmenting the Market for Greater Personalization
Segmentation is not new. SBI has been segmenting prospects and existing customers for companies of all industries and sizes over the past 12 years. Dividing the market into discrete groups with similar characteristics to better target prospects’ unmet needs is a time-tested technique for a good reason.
Traditionally, companies with robust segmentation outperform their competition via a tailored approach that uniquely positions their own products and services. Beyond tailoring, they’re also able to target prospects or customers with a higher propensity to buy. Ultimately this results in increasing customer lifetime value.
Affinio is an AI platform designed to uncover new customer segments and provide further insights into existing segments. Affinio’s AI separates consumers into unique clusters based on behavioral patterns, shared traits, and commonalities – precisely the type of data that feeds into personas. Recently, BBC Worldwide used Affinio to reach customers with a higher level of personalization. As personas often change behaviors or wear multiple hats, an annual or even biannual refresh leveraging proven data is recommended. As a result, BBC saw an increase in audience engagement.
Chatbots – a Household Name in the New World of Marketing
Chatbots, computer-generated programs to converse with customers and prospects, are now a common feature of marketing strategy. Often, basic chatbots still require business development representatives (BDRs) or customer service on the backend to facilitate complicated questions and conversations. However, more advanced versions using AI can now build conversational experiences into the chatbot that feel authentic enough to lead even the keenest audience into assuming a chatbot is a real person.
Meanwhile, these AI-enhanced chatbots continually improve by leveraging the data of each interaction into machine learning processes. Human-sounding chatbots may reduce BDR and/or customer support costs, freeing up team members to focus on driving revenue.
Copywriting – No Longer Just a Human Skill
Some of today’s biggest-name tech leaders are now using AI to generate copy that has the potential to connect with customers across their various reading platforms. For example, Chinese tech giant, Alibaba, claims to have developed an advanced, internal AI copywriting tool and Elon Musk’s company, Open AI, has developed a realistic text generator for application in customer outreach.
General copywriting AI can perform on its own, with some limited-to-basic-tasks around email or product descriptions. Meanwhile, newer entrants are promising to “pass the Turing Test” (i.e., to seem human-written). Phrasee now offers data-driven ad copy on Facebook and Instagram to simplify the role of the digital marketer. Chase Bank leverages Persado to help perfect their human-written copy. Persado and Grammarly tell the writer what words, phrases, and images to use based on the emotional appeal sought for a particular persona or prospect. They ease manual marketer activities to help them become more and more strategic.
Visual Search or Image Recognition – Turning Doodles into Icons
Though its still early days, visual search has progressed significantly. On the B2C side, retailers such as Target and ASOS are using image recognition by integrating Pinterest Lens into their mobile app. This gives these brands the ability to provide personalized shopping experiences or to entice shoppers by showing them how they could look in the retailers’ products.
On the B2B side, visual search can be applied in social media to identify visual trends or to enhance social listening. These techniques let brands spot where and how customers are interacting with their brand or product even when not formally labeled or traditionally “tagged.” This can help brands spot advanced trends and further understand persona behaviors.
Social Listening and Sentiment Analysis – Elevating Brand Conversations
Companies have been performing analysis on social media conversations to identify attitudes about brands and products since the early days of social media. However, this has been a painstaking, manual effort until recently.
By leveraging AI developed for these tasks, companies can now perform analysis on social media conversations to identify attitudes about brands and products quickly and automatically. Recently, a sales rep walked me through a social post on a community forum’s Facebook page, scrolling through line-by-line to highlight the positive and negative mentions of their brand. This took the rep 5 minutes for one Facebook page, but with AI such as Crimson Hexagon (used by Samsung), a company can proactively identify product issues or impressions across all social media channels in a fraction of that time. Leveraging these insights, lets marketers understand purchase intent through language and word choice, enhancing their own CTAs for greater impact and prospect-need alignment.
Content Recommendations – They Go Together
In recent years, consumer brand standouts like Netflix, Spotify, and Amazon have been providing more accurate and useful personalized recommendations to their buyers. Expectations set by these experiences have left other brands’ buyers hungry for the same experience everywhere.
The new AI-based tool, IDIO, promises to help provide that offering for brands by learning about readers’ interests based on their browsing and reading habits. IDIO suggests articles or landing pages that are likely to be relevant. These AI-powered content recommendation widgets have the potential to personalize every website visit with stage-appropriate content.
Technology Should Support, Not Hinder
There are many emerging and established options for the marketing leader looking to leverage the latest tools to drive revenue growth while minimizing overhead. Soon, this will continue to be a crucial space to watch as ever-greater investments occur, and ever more ambitious tools become available. For further AI insight across Sales and Marketing, check out Want to Increase Selling Time? Harness the Power of AI-Driven Tools or visit us at our Dallas based Studio to brainstorm what AI tools may best benefit you.
“While human-beings still reign superior in the design world, I’m keeping a close eye on the implementation of these technologies by Adobe, Google, Microsoft, Autodesk – It’s definitely coming.” Tom Suess, Creative Director at Higher Logic.