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Google Announces Assistant with Bard

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Google just introduced Assistant with Bard, a personal assistant powered by generative AI.

This is an AI assistant that will act as a personalized helper across Google apps like Gmail and Docs.

For instance, you could ask it things like “Help me catch up on important emails from last week” or “Where is the birthday party I’m attending today?” and it will leverage your information across Google apps to help you achieve valuable tasks.

Says Google: “It combines Bard’s generative and reasoning capabilities with Assistant’s personalized help. You can interact with it through text, voice, or images — and it can even help take actions for you.”

It’ll be rolling out on Android and iOS in the coming months.

Why It Matters

Google Assistant with Bard gives us a glimpse into a near-term future of highly competent AI assistants—with big implications for marketers and business leaders.

Connecting the Dots

On Episode 67 of The Marketing AI Show, Marketing AI Institute founder and CEO Paul Roetzer walked me through why Google Assistant with Bard matters.

1. 2024 may be the year of the AI-powered personal assistant.

We may finally see tools like Google Assistant, Siri, and Alexa live up to their potential and get much more sophisticated.

2. This could significantly change behavior.

If you think forward 3-12 months from now and Google, Siri, and Alexa are truly conversational agents that can hear, speak, and see, how we consume information starts to change, says Roetzer.

We may default to interaction with these smart assistants versus other channels of information consumption.

3. The question becomes: Horizontal or vertical?

Will we have a handful of highly intelligent general assistant from Google, Apple, Amazon, and others? Or will we have highly specific vertical-focused AI assistants in different domains of expertise?

Roetzer says it’s too early to confidently tell because we’re still don’t know how good these foundational models will get. You may be looking at a future where you only need a few general assistants instead of many different vertical-specific solutions.

What to Do About It

Think about AI on faster timelines.

“You have to stay on top of this stuff because it is moving pretty quickly,” says Roetzer. “I think you have to build dynamic roadmaps internally for AI, not make two-year bets.”

When planning for these tools, look 3-12 months out max. Don’t wait to solve for AI use cases six months from now under the assumption it’ll be much more powerful. Start focusing your energy on solving for a few near-term use cases.

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