AI is a trending buzzword that everyone is talking about. We know it impacts our daily lives, but do we really know what AI is, and are we aware of how we use it can create value?
There is great potential for today's business world and specifically for marketing. Let's first look at what AI is, define our playground, and decide how to play in it.
What is AI?
The origin of AI is the Turing Test, a method developed by Alan Turing in the 1950s that was used to test whether an algorithm can think like a human.
Turing claimed that computers could interact under certain conditions that cannot be distinguished from human reactions. If the response given in this test was indistinguishable from human responses, the test was considered successful. That's how AI's story started.
Today, AI involves processing big data with advanced algorithms to communicate with people using human responses, perform some routine operations flawlessly, and make predictions about future events by looking at the past.
AI has three main outputs:
• Interacting with humans
• Completing routine tasks
• Generating insights and predictions about future events
What’s in it for business?
For businesses, AI can offer efficiency and improved customer experiences. AI algorithms, which can perform calculations that are almost impossible to do with human beings' current capacity, are the most frequently used tools today. The science of statistics lies at the basis of them. However, it's a different story when statistics are combined with powerful computers and new algorithms, which demonstrate AI’s power.
AI's capabilities have started to create value in many sectors, including education, financial services, health care, retail and human resources.
What about marketing?
A primary goal for marketing is gain insights from millions of customer interactions and make continuous and consistent predictions about target audiences’ needs, expectations and behaviours. However, marketers also need to do this in an efficient and cost-effective manner.
Marketing teams can achieve this efficiency with sophisticated and scalable AI and machine learning methods. It’s only in the last decade or so that these methods have been put into practice with creative and technological solutions, but they are gaining traction amongst marketing teams.
Here are some of the most effective uses of AI and machine learning in marketing:
Customer loyalty and satisfaction
- AI can analyze customers’ multi-channel behaviours and churn propensity and consider instant retention actions accordingly.
- AI can take proactive customer loyalty measures by instantly analyzing customer mimics gestures to manage the timing of how offers and other incentives are presented.
- AI can help understand customer satisfaction by conducting sentiment and tone of voice analysis during communications with call centres.
- AI helps generate advertising and offers that is related to content that the customer is currently interacting with, thereby creating a more personalized targeting strategy.
- AI can create instant and continuous personalization of content established through different digital channels based on customer segmentation.
- AI can offer instant monitoring of key performance indicators used in marketing management while continuously optimizing with warnings and suggestions.
Social media sentiment analysis:
- AI can provide real-time measurement of how marketing efforts are working by undertaking instant social media sentiment analysis.
It’s also important to highlight potential issues with data privacy. In an AI environment, where a customer’s voice, image, geographic movements, connections, and other sensitive information are recorded and processed, it is vital to manage this vast amount of data with awareness and transparency as to how private information is stored and managed. Complying with the regulations and best practices in this realm will always be crucial as we strive for balance between creating value and adhering to both ethical and legal principles.
Ultimately, when marketers combine common sense with creativity and seek to establish a balance between analytics, ethics and regulation, organizations and their customers will get the most out of AI and the many solutions it offers.
Author: Ersegun Kocoglu
Ersegun Kocoglu is the Founder and CMO of Market Me Canada Inc. He is also a member of the CMA Insights Council.