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The next step in ML/AI

The implication of AI & ML on the marketing landscape

Vibhuthi Viswanathan
machine learning
© Shutterstock / Zapp2Photo

Artificial intelligence and machine learning are changing how marketing campaigns work for many companies. They make it possible to transform datasets that allow better decision-making. However, it is not a magic solution, and there are still a few things you should not do when implementing AI and ML.

In today’s world of advertising, high-end technologies like Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning are at the forefront of every innovation. They make it possible to transform datasets that allow better decision-making. The recent development of accessible and affordable advanced data analytics tools has shown that AI & ML is an excellent way to sell products and services to customers.

Nowadays, employing AI & ML is considered necessary for collecting data and reaping its full potential to improve the bottom line. The use of AI and ML in marketing is also becoming widely accepted as a necessary step forward in amassing data and optimizing the utilization of it. Thanks to AI and machine learning, companies can analyze more complex data and get more accurate results. They serve as tools to gain valuable insights that are capable of enhancing an organization’s ROI. A recent survey conducted found that more than 97% of the industry experts consider the future of digital marketing to be shaped by AI-based marketing automation and machine learning techniques. This highlights the general perception towards AI and ML. 

Some of the major areas in which AI and ML have already been integrated to enhance marketing efforts include:

  • Improving user experience using chatbots
  • Making marketing more personalized
  • Capability to provide the right information at the right time in the right environment
  • Enhancing the volume of dark social sharing
  • Content creation guided by predictive intelligence

AI & ML in marketing space

There is a significant difference between the traditional way of marketing and marketing-based on AI/ML. Traditional marketing is carried out without any sort of insights into the purchasing behaviour of the target audience. On the other hand, AI-based marketing is carried out with relevant details of customer’s purchasing patterns and other criteria. This will yield more conversion rates and a substantial increase in sales. 

Many kinds of ML models are employed in the present-day digital marketing to power modern businesses with AI.

SEE ALSO: Reinforcement learning: A gentle introduction and industrial application

Following are a few of the important ML-based marketing models: 

  • Pay per click campaigns based on machine learning
  • Chat bots and other tools for real-time content help
  • Highly effective and targeted email campaigns
  • Good risk prediction 
  • Content campaigns driven by insights generated by ML
  • Highly effective predictive data modeling 

The above-mentioned models are powered by different kinds of algorithms that enable marketers to improve their customer outreach, reach the correct audience, trigger a reaction, and provide superlative user experience.

Major benefits of ML/AI in marketing

Today, the landscape of marketing is undergoing rapid changes owing to new technological innovations in artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML). An end number of tools based on machine learning languages are accomplishing great things in the field of marketing. On a regular basis, we can also see several new apps, tools, and cloud-based platforms emerging. 

There are many advantages to marketing guided by AI and ML. Some of them are:

  • Enhanced marketing qualified leads (MQLs)
  • Boost in the sales qualified leads (SQLs)
  • Better insight into target audiences, which helps better position marketing strategies
  • Highly relevant target audience
  • Optimization of marketing drives based on data
  • Highly precise marketing campaigns
  • Improved profits and sales
  • Brings down the overall marketing cost
  • Rapid solutioning of marketing problems
  • Enhanced customer satisfaction and user experience
  • Enhanced and precise forecasts and sales projections
  • Improved customer support and relationships

One of the primary goals of ML and AI-based marketing is to gain a better understanding of customers and provide intelligent solutions. This has a very big impact on the business’s bottom line. 

Top 5 reasons why companies should adopt AI-based marketing

Bringing real-time to life

Though the term ‘real-time’ has been around for years, it became possible only after the advent of AI. The level of responsivity that is offered by AI is far superior to what was possible by other systems. For instance, customers can now see offers change by second which is based on the virtual data generated by their behaviour online processed by the machines.

Paving way to marketing prophecy

Through the years, many professionals have tried their hand at demand forecasting, or marketing prophesy as it is known otherwise. This has been done based on consistent purchasing patterns and trends. Using AI for marketing will give people something more concrete: a chance to offer customers what they want before they realize it themselves. This will mainly be in the form of suggestions. However, they will be based on data, rather than being presented as blind suggestions to disinterested customers. 

Structuring marketing content

Insights given by the client or the company are utilized by a copywriter to tailor advertisements and email marketing to the target audience. Most of the time, the writers adopted a blanket approach and work by taking a calculated guess, as they don’t have proper insights at their disposal. It is at this juncture that ML can play an important role. It provides an actual way of carrying out sentiment analysis which will help the markers to predict their audience reactions as well as to know what and how to communicate with them. For instance, we can see the effects of sentiment analysis on Twitter. By closely monitoring this social platform, marketers can actually see what resonates with a particular target audience. 

Cutting costs

AI cuts down a huge chunk of marketing cost as it required less number of people to be involved. It also reduces communication costs because most customers can be updated on offers through automated emails, social media posts online, ads, or other content that can be scheduled. The precision that is a given with AI & ML in marketing keeps production and distribution informed about offline materials. This enables marketers to find out the right quantity and employ the best effective channels which helps bring down the extra cost related to overproduction.

SEE ALSO: How UX can demystify AI: “We need more than just technical transparency”

Eliminates marketing waste

A good marketing campaign reaches its audience and also starts a conversation with them. A key challenge during this process is what is called marketing waste. This refers to the trial and error approach that most professionals have adopted to devise a good marketing strategy. Regardless of whether it is conducted online or offline, most marketing campaigns essentially scatter seeds with the hope that some will take root.

With machine learning, this can be bettered. It has the potential to make marketing strategies more precise. With the help of behavioural data, marketers can help to refine their target audience and efficiently convert shoppers to customers.

Real-life examples of AI/ML in marketing

As per a recent study, digital advertising is poised to exceed $335 billion globally and $117.53 billion in the USA by 2020. This points to the huge money companies are willing to pour into the area of digital marketing.

The following are examples of some big companies that employ AI/ML for their business.

  • Google uses AI for ranking websites
  • Amazon uses AI/ML for its online stores
  • Netflix uses it for curating content with the help of predictive analysis tools
  • Pinterest uses AI/ML for it locating content and recommendation algorithms for improving user experience
  • Yelp uses it for processing images

Other than the companies discussed above, there are numerous more that use commercial ML platforms to address their marketing requirements in the marketplace.

Popular tools for ML/AI based marketing

There is an end number of AI-based marketing tools and they are increasing day by day. A large number of commercial and native applications, tools and platforms are developing frequently in the marketplace. The following are some of the popular ones:

  • Alexa
  • AgileOne
  • Oracle BlueKai
  • Motiva AI
  • Ascend
  • Adobe audience manager
  • Automated Insights
  • Salesforce Einstein
  • Albert
  • CloudSight

What you should avoid when it comes to AI-based marketing

Without any doubt, AI and ML have progressed tremendously. However, the role played by a marketer has not come down in importance. The strategies devised by humans are still important. 

SEE ALSO: AI-as-a-Service: AI cloud services should make the technology suitable for everyday use

The following are some of the common mistakes that a good strategist should avoid while implementing AI-backed marketing strategies:

  • Depending on hunches or gut feelings
  • Planning with very little insight into customers
  • Implementing marketing campaigns without analyzing or testing it first
  • Forgetting about loyal or repetitive customers
  • Targeting generics and broader audience
  • Focusing on numerous outcomes or results
  • Depending solely on marketing channels
  • A generic customer approach
  • Relying on content that is of little value
  • Forgetting touch-point and relevant approach

Conclusion

As highlighted in the article, the future of digital marketing is seen closely associated with machine learning and artificial intelligence-based marketing. Today multiple numbers of organizations and corporations already benefit from AI-based marketing techniques. Certain small and medium-sized companies are also following behind large corporations in adopting AI-based techniques to reap the full benefits of digital marketing.

Author

Vibhuthi Viswanathan

Vibhuthi Viswanathan is an avid follower of the latest trends in the world of Technology. Her writing aims to engage and educate the readers on all things Tech. She currently curates content for SpringPeople, a premier Corporate training  provider for high-end and emerging technologies, methodologies and products. Partnered with parent organizations behind these technologies, SpringPeople delivers authentic and most comprehensive training on related topics. When she is not twirling with words and pauses at SpringPeople, she binge reads popular literature.


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