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artificial intelligence in marketing

Marketing Artificial Intelligence Institute

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Duane Forrester

Duane Forrester is VP of Industry Insights at Yext, a company pioneering a new category called Digital Knowledge Management, which gives businesses control of all of the public facts that they want consumers to know across the intelligent ecosystem.

Blog Feature

Blueprint for Your Life: AI in your Personal & Professional Life

By: Duane Forrester
June 14th, 2018

When building a successful ecosystem, one of the biggest challenges for any business is generating wide adoption. Even Amazon needs to focus on things like this, which is why they’ve created Blueprints. Blueprints allows the average person to create private Skills for their personal use with their own Alexa-powered device. Skills are like apps for Amazon’s Alexa. Some examples of these new Blueprints would be: creating things like family to-do lists, instructions for pet sitters, instructions for how to turn on your TV for house guests, or even a trivia game for your family based on history and inside jokes. If we explore the pet sitter example a bit, the scenario is simple: You leave accessible instructions for your pet sitter, which can be as easy as having the pet sitter say, “Hey Alexa, what’s the pet sitting list?” Alexa would then read the list of information that you programmed into the system—vet’s name and number, any medications, when to feed your pets, where the food is located, etc.—whatever you want the person to know in relation to taking care of your pets. This service is not public—the access point is from your Alexa devices in your own home. Once you set up a Blueprint, only those with access to your Alexa device(s), and who know the phrase to summon the Blueprint, will be able to access it.

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AI-Powered Chatbots: The Intersection of Your Product and Your Customer

By: Duane Forrester
May 22nd, 2018

It’s no secret that one of the cornerstones of business success is customer service. Listening to a customer, hearing their needs, and giving them the exact item they want—at the moment they need it—has always been a formula for success. Artificially intelligent chatbots are starting to take us in that direction. For several years, chatbots have been part of the landscape in ecosystems such as WeChat. They have a lot of users, which makes WeChat an ideal space to deploy AI chatbots and help them learn. In fact, they even had their own virtual assistant, WeSecretary, who could help you manage your online transactions for a 10% fee. It’s currently dormant, but demonstrated a use case that’s very real.Apple recently announced Business Chat for iMessenger, and while its initial use is to encourage human-to-human customer service and support, it’s fully capable of supporting an AI-powered chatbot in the future. In fact, it’s a multi-step process to get there, with one of those steps being to eliminate voice interactions and get consumers engaging via chat.We’ve seen chatbots in Facebook Messenger, and even watched —in fascination, amusement, and horror—as Microsoft’s Tay went off the rails in spectacular fashion several years ago.

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Blog Feature

What Businesses Need to Know About the Coming AI Transformation in Search

By: Duane Forrester
April 16th, 2018

It’s been said that not making a decision is the same as making a decision. The idea being that eventually something will change, forcing you to deal with the circumstances regardless of your desire. And that’s the way it is with AI and machine learning. It’s happening, and in many ways, its impact is already being felt. Choosing to ignore advancements in machine learning won’t change the fact that it’s powering AI in new ways—and those new ways are bringing change to both you and your business.

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Amazon's AI Chat is Going To Change Your World

By: Duane Forrester
April 6th, 2018

“Alexa, let’s chat.” These words are powering a revolution poised to enmesh both consumers and businesses. They invoke a little-known feature in Amazon’s Alexa — the product of a year-long competition between universities world-wide to build a conversational user interface for Alexa. In 2017, the winner was the University of Washington, and its program underpins the system that you can interact with today. We’ll take a look at how this effort may impact businesses, but first, some background.

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In the Age of AI, Local Listings Matter More Than Ever

By: Duane Forrester
March 9th, 2018

If you own a local business, you’re no stranger to the important role that listing data plays in your success with customers. That data—foundational to local businesses for well over a decade now—is relied on by search engines and consumers alike. And as artificial intelligence becomes more commonplace (and more powerful), the role that local listing data plays in your success will only continue to increase.

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Blog Feature

How to Get Your Data Ready for the Intelligent Future

By: Duane Forrester
March 2nd, 2018

It’s no secret that we are at a turning point brought on by technology and machine learning. Every day we see news reports referencing artificial intelligence (AI) and the predicted changes it will bring. In our everyday lives, AI is already well established through devices such as smart speakers, our phones, and as a layer that decides what we see in our search results. With frequent announcements that AI is being integrated in new and novel ways, how do you step forward and claim your space?

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