What is the role of artificial intelligence in marketing?
In recent years, Artificial Intelligence (AI) has emerged as a hot topic in nearly every industry, promising transformative benefits to an increasingly global market. When it comes to marketing, however, which historically has hinged on human-based interactions and personalization, is there a place for AI?
To begin, let’s look at the rise of AI. Simply put, Artificial Intelligence describes a machine’s ability to simulate human intelligence. Technology giants such as Amazon and Google consider AI to be an integral part of their business models, allowing them to consistently dominate on cutting-edge innovation. Yet, when it comes to the business of marketing, people oftentimes dismiss AI technology, assuming that effective marketing requires a more personalized approach that only human interaction can achieve.
However, this notion is far from the truth. When utilizing the right AI platform, marketers can leverage 1:1 personalization that far surpasses the ability of human agents. In fact, top-performing companies are two times more likely to use AI for marketing than lower-performing companies.
The benefit of AI in marketing rests in its ability to process consumer data at all levels to utilize just as well, if not better than a human agent can in engaging customers. Let’s take a top-down approach to understand how AI insight into data is revolutionizing how marketers engage with customers.
The Population-data level
At its most basic, AI allows enterprises to collect billions of data points in order to understand the populations they serve, and more importantly, how best to engage them. Such data inputs range from language to time zones, climate, and cultural preferences—empowering the AI engine to target consumers on a broad, fundamental level. For the marketer, this translates to a better understanding of when to reach out to consumers and what messages are most favorable.
The individual-data level
Next comes understanding data on an individual level. This is where AI sets itself apart from other automation tools by not only understanding consumer data as a big picture, but also narrowing it down to the individual customer and recognizing his or her unique wants and preferences. This insight includes understanding the channels on which consumers prefer to interact with brands (e.g. online, in-person, via mobile device) as well as the promotions most likely to resonate with a particular individual (e.g. free shipping, BOGO, discounts). AI empowers marketers to capitalize on these personalized preferences, considering historic behavior and purchasing patterns to make relevant recommendations.
Part of a successful marketing effort is leveraging the most effective messaging based on customer behaviors. For instance, certain individuals respond more positively to urgency messages (e.g. Hurry up! Only 3 left in stock), while others respond more positively to confidence messages (e.g. Check out our five-star reviews!). Through AI, enterprises can strategically determine when intervention is needed to influence behavior and which messages will drive consumer action.
The contextual-data level
Even further, the most appropriate course of action varies from one moment to the next. True AI platforms recognize relevance is a moving target determined by a consumer’s real-time context, and so allow marketers to go one step further by taking into account customers’ in-the-moment context to drive action. In fact, personalizing the overall customer journey and delivering next-best offers in real time are the two most common ways marketers are using AI today.
For instance, if a consumer penetrates the geo-fence of a QSR on an unusually hot day, AI technology will recognize the location and abnormal temperature conditions, and serve up a discount for an ice-cold beverage. Contextualizing offers in real time empowers a highly targeted and relevant outreach to each customer, thus empowering a true 1:1 interaction every time.
As enterprises today adopt AI strategies, it’s important to consider the best-fit platform. At Session AI, our in-session marketing platform empowers marketers to engage with customers through personalized and relevant content to build lasting customer loyalty. Find out how we’re delivering unprecedented 1:1 personalization through AI innovation.