The Online AI Course from Andrew Ng Every Marketer Should Take
This is the course I wish I’d had when getting started on my journey to understanding AI.
It’s called AI for Everyone and it’s taught for free on Coursera by Andrew Ng, former lead at Google Brain and the Baidu AI Group.
The course teaches you how to actually apply AI in your business, straight from the guy who led the charge to turn Google and Baidu into AI-first companies. Instead of getting too technical, AI for Everyone connects the dots for non-technical businesspeople (and marketers).
After just a few hours, you’ll have a playbook to start applying AI. That’s why I couldn’t recommend this course highly enough, especially if you’re a marketer, executive, or professional who wants to develop a competitive advantage with AI.
In the meantime, I’ve shared some of the top lessons I learned from the course, to get you excited about the content and give you a taste of what’s included.
1. You probably don’t know what makes a company good at AI.
Hint, having a few sophisticated AI systems doesn’t make you an AI-first company, says Ng.
He cites the lessons from the rise of the internet. Just because companies had a shopping mall and a website didn’t mean they were an internet-first company. Instead, a whole new generation of companies built new business models around internet infrastructure.
These are the companies that survived and grew into the tech behemoths of today— firms like Google and Amazon.
The same goes for AI. Companies can’t just add a few neural networks to their existing operations and call it a day.
AI transformation requires significant change, including unifying data warehouses, using pervasive automation, and creating new roles and divisions of labor.
During the AI transformations at Google and Baidu, Ng and his teams even launched products that intentionally didn’t make money—just to strategically acquire data for fueling AI.
Long story short, AI transformation requires everyone to get on the same page—and that page may look very different than what your company has done in the past.
2. You need to think about AI use cases differently.
There are two common misconceptions in business AI.
AI can’t do everything, no matter what some vendors say. And not everything you do is a great fit for AI, no matter what AI champions say.
Instead, you want to select projects at the intersection of what AI can actually do and the use cases that are actually valuable to your business.
Ng recommends you think about automating tasks rather than jobs. Many jobs can’t be easily automated outright. But plenty of tasks that make up different jobs can.
It’s the difference between saying “I want to use AI to automate call center jobs” and “I want to automate call center routing with AI.”
The second is far more specific, and doable, as a use case.
Ng recommends a brainstorming framework where you list out the main drivers of business value in your organization and the main pain points of the business. Then, you can start actually matching those to what AI is capable of doing. This is similar to the approach we used to build AI Score for Marketers, which helps businesses identify the most valuable use cases to intelligently automate.
3. There’s a proven playbook to follow for adopting AI.
The good news is: Ng provides a proven playbook in the course for successfully implementing AI. And they’re not the steps you might think.
He actually recommends you execute a pilot project first, before you build your team or develop a strategy.
Because you overcome skepticism and create buy-in with other internal stakeholders for AI transformation. That guarantees early success more than having the right strategy.
Says Ng in his AI Transformation Playbook, a free complimentary resource to AI for Everyone:
“When I was leading the Google Brain team, there was significant skepticism within Google (and more broadly, around the world) of deep learning technology.
“To help the team gain momentum, I chose the Google Speech team as my first internal customer, and we worked closely with them to make Google Speech recognition much more accurate.
“[...] By making the Speech team more successful using deep learning, other teams started to gain faith in us, which enabled the Google Brain team to gain momentum.”
8 Hours That Will Cut Months Off Your AI Learning Curve
All in, the AI for Everyone course takes about eight hours, but the value to you and your company is limitless as you seek to understand, pilot and scale AI.
Take the full course by clicking the button below.
Make AI Your Competitive Advantage—Right Now
Artificial intelligence is forecasted to have trillions of dollars in annual impact, yet most marketers still struggle to understand what AI is and how to pilot it in their organizations.
We are in the infancy of AI adoption as an industry. You and your organization have the opportunity now to be proactive in advancing knowledge and capabilities before your competitors beat you to it.
AI does not replace humans in most instances, but, rather, enhances human knowledge and capabilities. In essence, AI can give marketers and brands superpowers. Marketers who take the initiative to learn and experiment with AI will be able to:
- Drive revenue growth.
- Increase productivity and efficiency.
- Generate greater ROI on marketing spend.
So, how do you get started with, and scale, artificial intelligence in your marketing right now?
Buy a ticket to the Marketing Artificial intelligence Conference (MAICON), from July 16 - 18 in Cleveland, Ohio.
At MAICON, you'll learn how to turn AI into your competitive advantage with actionable talks from experts at companies like Amazon, HubSpot, Publicis, Softbank Robotics and IBM, as well as marketing visionaries like David Meerman Scott and Mitch Joel.
About Mike Kaput
Mike Kaput is the Director of Marketing AI Institute and a senior consultant at PR 20/20. He writes and speaks about how marketers can understand, adopt, and pilot artificial intelligence to increase revenue and reduce costs. Full bio.