In the time it took to write this post, the hashtag #AI was used 690 times on Twitter. There’s so much content created and promoted hourly on the topic of artificial intelligence that it can be nearly impossible to keep up with it all. At the Marketing AI Institute, we read dozens of articles each week to uncover the most valuable ones for our subscribers (become a subscriber today).
Here are three of the best we’re reading this week.
1. Billions of Consistent Brand Experiences Sold and Counting...
We’ve all been to a McDonald’s at some point in our lives. Whether you went 10 years ago or yesterday, the experience is largely consistent, which is why the franchise dots every roadway in America. Artificial intelligence, points out Adweek, does the same thing for digital-first brands.
Consider: Salesforce recently concluded that 81 percent of consumers expect the same level of service every time they interact with a brand across different channels. For marketers, this translates to delivering the same messaging to every customer, across every platform, every single time. For a small marketing team aiming to produce quality, high-volume content, this can seem like an impossible task. However, with the help of artificial intelligence, brands can produce consistent, quality content at length, giving them an advantage over their competitors in the continuous battle for consumers’ attention.
“As the bar for effective frequency gets raised, the risk of inconsistent brand experiences multiplies,” writes Adweek. “So how can a small team of marketers ever hope to deliver a consistent message across so many channels?
That’s where AI is already starting to step up. We’re seeing new AI-powered tools for ad analytics that can predict the efficacy of ad buys on programmatic platforms and AI-fueled enhancements to ad targeting across all platforms. In short, AI has infiltrated both advertising and experiential marketing disciplines by creating consistency where instability previously reigned.”
2. Let’s Get Personal
Artificial intelligence doesn’t just allow brands to scale marketing efforts to more and more people. In fact, that might not be its most valuable use case, says Fast Company, if Pinterest is any indication. The brand uses AI for a different purpose: personalization.
The company has developed a visual search tool called Lens. Snap a photo of, say, an avocado and Lens will find other photos of avocados that look similar. It’s impressive functionality, but the Pinterest team quickly realized “the results were meaningless.” After all, nobody takes a photo of an avocado to find more avocados. What users needed, Pinterest realized, was personalized insight.
Today, the beta version of Lens now returns useful recommendations on what to do with avocados, recipes you can use them for, and how to grow them. It does this for many items you might search visually. The insights provided by AI help form a “taste graph” for each user that excels at “connecting the dots between her pins to infer what else she might be interested in.”
Given that 98% of Pinterest’s 200 million users try new things they find on the service, AI, it looks like, could add up to big business, since advertisers flock to the site for the opportunity to get their wares in front of new potential customers.
3. Silence (for Brands) Is Golden
It is predicted that by 2020, 85% of consumers will manage their brand interactions without speaking to a single human being. An article from VentureBeat reminds us that we are already silently interacting with brands every single day. The Italian restaurant menu items we decipher with Google Translate and the curated playlists we listen to from Spotify are passive interactions we’re having with those brands.
“While each of these interactions is still an ‘experience,’ they’re increasingly silent—occurring in the background so people are free to flow between activities without interruptions. As brands become better able to predict proactively what we want and provide us with what we need without prompts, we enter into a new era that rewards a brand’s silence over its ability to get your attention.”
Artificial intelligence makes this all possible.
“Forget evil robots stealing our jobs for the moment and notice the influx and adoption of systems that use AI to drive efficiency, promote customization, and support better customer service,” writes VentureBeat. “They are revolutionizing brand experiences as we know them by silencing the role that louder, more attention-seeking communications play in our decision processes.”
This does not at all mean that brands are dying, they are simply evolving alongside customers’ interactions. Moving forward, brands must focus more on designing and implementing products that lead to a more personalized and seamless experience for consumers.
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About Mike Kaput
Mike Kaput is a senior consultant at PR 20/20 who is passionate about AI's potential to transform marketing. At PR 20/20, he creates measurable marketing results for companies using data-driven strategies, market-leading content, and scalable marketing technologies. Full bio.