At the Marketing AI Institute, we read dozens of articles on artificial intelligence every week to uncover the most valuable ones for our subscribers (become a subscriber today), and we curate them for you here. We call it 3 Links in 3 Minutes. Enjoy!
1. 85% of Americans Use Some Form of AI Regularly
A new report from Gallup and Northeastern University found that 85% of Americans are using at least one of six technologies that leverage artificial intelligence. Additionally, 79% of respondents reported that AI has had a very or mostly positive impact on their lives.
The mail survey was conducted between September and October 2017 and included over 3,000 respondents. It gauged respondents’ overall relationships with AI-powered devices and their usage.
The six AI technologies used for the survey were navigation apps, video and music streaming services, smartphone digital assistants, ride-sharing apps, intelligent home personal assistants, and smart home devices such as self-learning thermostats and lighting.
The most popular application is navigation apps such as Google Maps and Waze, which are used by 84% of the respondents. On the contrary, only 20% of respondents reported using smart home devices.
This can be explained in part by the age of these technologies. Navigation apps have been on the market since the mid-2000s, allowing more time for adoption. Smart home devices and intelligent home personal assistants such as Amazon’s Alexa, have only been on the market since 2011 and 2014, respectively.
Either way, with a vast majority of Americans using some form of AI on a regular basis, it’s obvious that artificial intelligence and machine learning have moved to widespread consumer use. It is imperative that marketers and professionals take an active role in learning about the technology.
The full report can be accessed here.
The democratization of artificial intelligence was a resounding theme at this year’s SXSW event and one that Google Cloud’s chief AI scientist Fei-Fei Li discussed heavily on stage with former White House CTO Megan Smith and Foundation Capital partner Joanne Chen.
Recounted by VentureBeat, Li’s main hope is for a more human-centered approach to artificial intelligence.
“Again I stress: AI doesn’t belong to just a few tech giants in Silicon Valley, and these few companies in Silicon Valley have a responsibility to harness AI for the good of everyone, but they also have the responsibility to work with everybody, recognize we don’t know it all, and to include everybody.”
Throughout the discussion, Li emphasized the importance of democratization and including traditionally underrepresented groups. She shared how her nonprofit AI4All brings underrepresented high school students into the world of AI through mentorship programs and summer camps.
Although giants like Google and Facebook hold much of the power when it comes to AI, Li believes they are also responsible for opening and sharing the knowledge with public and other disciplines.
“Whether it’s manufacturing, energy, healthcare, education—AI can be used everywhere with various data, and the clear applications area that makes products better, increases productivity, and all this, so I think that is hopefully going to happen in a more full, fair way,” she said.
Smith echoed that opinion by discussing the dangers of the lack of diversity in AI and datasets used to train AI systems. One example is how facial recognition software from IBM and Microsoft still fails to recognize people of color. She warned that we should “not constrain ourselves to the mistakes of the past,” while planning for the “4th Industrial Revolution.”
3. How Marketing Executives at Top Brands Embrace AI
Last week, a panel of executives gathered at Adweek’s Elevate AI summit to discuss the future of artificial intelligence. According to Adweek, the infancy of the technology was a common theme present throughout the discussion.
While most executives are testing and using AI and machine learning, they’re also actively evaluating and planning for ways the technology will play an even bigger role within their organizations.
“We’re on a mission to become the most creative and impactful data-led organization in the world,” said Kimberly Kadlec, Visa’s senior vice president of global marketing. “We’re going to move to a model where we have a very, very high percentage of precision marketing and automated marketing.”
However, experimentation and failure may be necessary to achieve such success.
“You have to be comfortable with telling your boss, management, ‘We tested it out; it’s wrong,’” Kadlec said. “Otherwise, people are too afraid to push the boundaries.”
This is similar to the advice another panelist, Conversable and Hypergiant CEO Ben Lamm:
“Start with something very small and learn, grown, iterate,” he said.
All panelists agreed that while AI is still a very young technology with limitations, it also the potential to transform how marketers do their jobs.
Ashley Sams is director of marketing at Ready North. She joined the agency in 2017 with a background in marketing, specifically for higher education and social media. Ashley is a 2015 graduate of The University of Mount Union where she earned a degree in marketing.