Almost all marketers have the same question about artificial intelligence:
How do I get started?
You don't need to know it all to build a competitive advantage with AI in your business and career.
But you do need to take the right steps if you want to cut down your learning curve and begin experimentation and implementation in the quickest, cheapest way possible.
At the Marketing AI Institute, we've spent years experimenting with artificial intelligence tools and talking to vendors to better understand what's actually possible with AI.
These are some of the steps we think are most important to take when you're just getting started.
1. Read the right material.
There’s a lot of hype out there about what AI can and can’t do. It’s easy to get bogged down reading article after article, without truly learning much.
We put together a list of the 12 artificial intelligence articles marketers should read.
We think this list gives you a solid grasp of where AI is at today, and where it might be going. The list is divided into sections on what AI is, common misconceptions, and why it matters.
2. Look for actual case studies.
Always look for companies actually using AI. There’s a lot of talk about what’s possible—and it’s not always backed up by fact. The following links are great places to read about some real use cases:
- The Top 3 Use Cases Right Now for Artificial Intelligence in Marketing
- How Brands Target Consumers and Sell More with Artificial Intelligence
- Use Cases for Artificial Intelligence in B2B Marketing
We also publish case studies regularly on the Marketing AI Institute website. Subscribe to make sure you don’t miss them.
3. Lean on a lot of different experts.
Here’s the truth about AI experts: even the smartest ones know only a fraction of what’s going on in AI.
That’s because AI is a complex field of many overlapping technologies. It’s quite possible to understand one field better than anyone in the world, while being in the dark about what’s going on in other fields.
That means sampling a wide variety of expert advice is critical to get the whole picture about what’s happening in AI. Look for experienced practitioners who have actually used AI or run AI companies. This article is an excellent place to find some of them:
4. Look to your existing tech.
The existing automation, CRM, or other marketing technology you use might have AI baked in already. If it does, there’s no better way to begin experimenting.
For instance, we use marketing automation software HubSpot frequently. The company has started to use AI in aspects of its platform, including for content strategy and predictive lead scoring. This makes it much easier for our team, especially those unfamiliar with AI, to see the tech in action and get comfortable with how to augment their work using AI.
If your tech doesn’t have AI, call up your provider and ask how they plan to integrate AI into their products. Their roadmap will help you understand how AI may impact your day-to-day work.
5. Find tools to test.
There are plenty of AI solutions you can implement to make your marketing more personalized, productive, and predictive.
But digging up vendors and defining your use cases isn't always easy.
That's why we've created a free tool to speed up your research into marketing AI tools.
The Marketing AI Buyer's Guide is an interactive catalog of 40+ marketing technology vendors that use artificial intelligence (e.g. machine learning, deep learning, natural language processing and generation, image recognition, etc.) to enhance human knowledge and capabilities.
The tool is designed to help you start researching AI tools as fast and efficiently as possible.
As Chief Content Officer, Mike Kaput uses content marketing, marketing strategy, and marketing technology to grow and scale traffic, leads, and revenue for Marketing AI Institute. An avid writer, Mike has published hundreds of articles on how to use AI in marketing to increase revenue and reduce costs. Mike is the co-author of Marketing Artificial Intelligence: AI, Marketing and the Future of Business (Matt Holt Books, 2022). He is also the author of Bitcoin in Plain English, a beginner’s guide to the world’s most popular cryptocurrency.