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Has your organization defined an AI for Marketing strategy?

I’ll admit that I don’t necessarily understand the buzz around Artificial Intelligence or AI. Because machine learning and the progression to Artificial Intelligence (AI) has been integrated into our daily lives.  

For example, when Netflix suggests a movie based on your previous viewing history. When you frequent Qdoba and order a soft drink, you proceed to the “soda dispenser on steroids” where the most dispensed flavors are more visibly presented. Or when you receive a grocery store coupon for the very items that you frequently buy. All this is AI deployed in our everyday lives. 

We can probably point to the launch of ChatGPT effective November 30, 2022, that started this year’s buzz. As evidence of this, KPMG completed a survey with CEOs of US business executives across industries with companies with $1B or more in revenue on their views of generative AI. Consider the changes in perception from March to June 2023. 

  • When asked in March, 78% of business leaders suggested that generative AI was the top emerging technology over the next 3-5 years. 
  • When asked in June, 75% of business leaders suggested that generative AI was one of the top 3 emerging technologies in the next 12-18 months. 

Furthermore, these same business leaders suggested that AI will be disruptive but will add value. 

However, there are legitimate concerns as relates to AI including lack of transparency in deep learning models, privacy and security concerns, biased algorithm and data sets, and a concentration of power with a few global organizations to name just a few. And I’m not attempting to minimize these legitimate concerns. According to Forbes, the business and regulatory communities need to actively engage in safety research, collaborate on ethical guidelines and promote transparency in AI development. 

That being said, I do think it’s safe to say that AI is here to stay. And yet, there is a fair amount of fear, uncertainty and doubt (or FUD) that exists. To rise about the FUD, the following are a few suggestions that you might consider related to how to integrate AI in your marketing strategy. 

  1. Don’t check your brain at the door. To borrow from Ted Lasso, be inquisitive (and not judgmental.) Question whether the data that you’ve received via AI is accurate. For example, ChatGPT is only as recent as information available up to August 2021, or 2 years in arrears. 
  2. Build trust with AI. Meaning embrace this new technology by considering how AI can make repeatable actions easier. Like the use of Chatbot to respond to simpler inquiries from customers which might be considered a repetitive action. 
  3. Start small. Consider implementing a proof of concept focused on a challenging action and consider how this action could be automated. As an example, reviewing customer comments across social media could be summarized by using AI as compared to a human review. 
  4. Accept failure. In testing proof of concept, consider that you may have to implement an agile methodology – meaning that you may not get it right the first time but be open to considering what you learn from what you might initially consider a “failed attempt.” 
  5. Alignment with your brand. From a strategic point of view, ensure that the use of AI is aligned with your marketing. For example, if your brand is positioned as a self-serve SaaS product, then using AI to enable the customer to “help themselves” is a strong alignment with your brand. 

To state the obvious, modern marketing requires more complexity, more agility and more velocity than ever before. Since this is absolutely the reality, embracing AI is a smart move for your company to consider with the goal being to improve customer value. In this way, AI becomes less scary and theoretical when we align our mindset to be focused on building customer value. 

Note, I’ve recently acquired a certification in Artificial Intelligence for Marketing from the University of Virginia. Please contact me to discuss how your company can investigate an AI for Marketing strategy.