AI is doing the jobs we don't want to do and the jobs we can't do, and improving the jobs we already do.
How many times in the last year have you heard the question, “Is artificial intelligence going to take over our jobs?” For marketers, this question is just as relevant, but I’m here to tell you that robots are our marketing friends.
We are just at the start of tapping into artificial intelligence (AI) for marketing, but there are already a number of great ways that this technology is improving our jobs, not killing them.
AI, in fact, has the potential to do the jobs we don’t want and the jobs we can’t do, and to ultimately help us do the jobs we already do, better. Here's more on each prediction:
The first obvious application of artificial intelligence is to automate the tasks that we humans don’t want to do -- those repetitive, low- skill tasks. AI can be easily programmed to do such work and do it faster, more cheaply and more reliably. A great example is the cataloguing of marketing data to be used for analysis.
Say, for example, that you wanted to write a unique blog article on the topic of “video marketing.” In order to figure out a unique angle for your article, you may want to catalogue all of the existing content on the topic of “video marketing” and even categorize each article by website, author and share metrics. This could be a very manual process for a human and something that would invite human error into the process.
Where AI shines is that it can do such repetitive tasks -- but at scale. Imagine that, in the same time frame, a junior marketer could catalogue 100 “video marketing” articles while a machine could catalogue more than 1,000 articles on the same topic, along with 1,000 articles each for 100 more topics.
Such AI ability becomes particularly useful for marketers who are attempting to aggregate data about what’s happening outside of their company -- what’s being published by their competitors, customers or industry peers. There are tens of millions of pieces of content data created every minute, and if marketers want to leverage it, we need to employ machines to help.
Not only is AI automating jobs we don’t want to do, it’s also opening the doors to jobs we can’t do. Since AI has the ability to process an infinitely larger dataset than a human can, it can leverage that scale to identify marketing insights that would otherwise be lost.
Say you want to take the next step in that content-marketing data-collection project: You not only want to catalogue all of the “video marketing” content, but to catalogue all of the content being published in your industry more broadly. Ultimately, you'll want to use this catalogue to drive market-informed content campaigns of our own.
Identifying new topics emerging or types of articles that garner above-average shares can help direct new content creation to align with existing trends. A given article could have many different qualities that could lead to its success. It’s AI’s ability to tag and compare many data points that ultimately produce the marketing takeaway.
AI’s strength in turning a mass of data into insight truly shines in the noisiest, highest-volume channels that a marketer hopes to master. Social media, content marketing, news and PR are great places to start, but even competitors’ job postings and website changes can be great inputs for marketing campaigns if a business can manage to extract insight out of the noise.
Again, AI-based technologies have the ability to throw out the noise -- whether that means the same old promotional tweet or a website update to fix a typo. Those technologies can then focus on the signal -- like a tweet about an acquisition or a website change to alter a competitor’s pricing. In this way, AI can see both the forest and the trees in online data to surface takeaways for marketers they would not be able to find manually -- and in real-time, at that.
By incorporating AI into our marketing, we have the opportunity to free up that expensive, intelligent, creative resource that is a marketer to do higher value work. Instead of collecting data, marketers can analyze it. Instead of sifting through data, marketers can act on it.
By delegating work to AI-driven technologies, marketers can improve their work by creating content they know will stand out, by implementing conversion-optimization strategies observed from competitors’ sites and enabling sales using the latest competitor pricing. And that's just the start of what AI can potentially do.