AI can now write and create images nearly as well as humans—and two companies just raised hundreds of millions of dollars to make AI even smarter.
What it is
Two major funding announcements occurred in the world of generative AI, or AI that creates text, images, video, code, and any other digital output.
- Stability AI announced $101 million in funding, led by top venture capital firms like Coatue and Lightspeed Venture Partners. Stability AI makes Stable Diffusion, which is a phenomenally powerful open-source image generator that has taken the world by storm.
- Jasper.ai, a popular generative AI tool that writes content, announced $125 million in Series A funding at a $1.5 billion valuation. Top VCs, including some involved with Stability AI’s raise, are also involved.
Both funding rounds are massive votes of confidence in generative AI—and indicators the technology is going to have a very, very big impact on businesses very, very soon.
Here’s why that matters…👇
Why it matters
In Episode 21 of the Marketing AI Show, Marketing AI Institute founder/CEO Paul Roetzer and myself discussed how generative AI is going to impact marketers.
- Every marketer writes and/or creates images. Generative AI can now do these tasks at increasingly capable skill levels. And the money flowing into the space has supercharged innovation. “I feel like more has happened in the last 60 days than happened in the previous nine years,” Roetzer told me. That means generative AI will impact your job as a marketer—sooner rather than later.
- Rapid innovation in the generative AI space will happen no matter what. In a note on its investment in Stability AI, Lightspeed Ventures pointed out that there is still plenty of controversy and uncertainty around generative AI, but they were moving forward with their investment anyway. “The perspective is: ‘we’re able to build it, we’re going to build it, and if we don’t release it, someone else is going to release it,’” says Roetzer. “It’s really important that people understand this is happening with or without you.”
- Marketers need to approach generative AI with urgency. Marketers don’t need to fear these technologies. They are accessible and, in many cases, augment rather than automate our work. “You have to have a sense of urgency to understand this stuff,” says Roetzer. “It is truly going to affect you very, very quickly.
(By the way, the image accompanying this blog post was generated by AI.)
What to do about it
- Read this article to see Lightspeed Ventures’ perspective on investment and innovation in generative AI to better understand the appetite for technological progress.
- Try out a generative AI tool like Jasper or DALL-E 2.
- Get the book. We talk more about the bigger picture opportunity for marketers, business, and AI in our book Marketing Artificial Intelligence: AI, Marketing, and the Future of Business.
PS — You can hear the whole conversation about this topic and more cutting-edge AI news in Episode 21 of the Marketing AI Show, out now.
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. Mike is the co-author of Marketing Artificial Intelligence: AI, Marketing and the Future of Business (Matt Holt Books, 2022). See Mike's full bio.