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AI-powered marketing tools allow teams to derive insights from collected and available data, and insight-based decisions from these tools deliver personalized and fully personalized offers. AI technologies enable data collection, analysis, and additional observations of trends and situations that can impact and influence both the customer and the marketing team.
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Benefits of AI
One of the most important advantages that AI offers for marketing is the personalization which opens the way to a much more agile response mechanism and therefore to an excellent customer relationship. Artificial intelligence tools offer a much fuller range of opportunities to raise awareness and improve the customer experience. Using AI in marketing strategies is largely about three things: smart segmentation using good data analytics, creating a connection based on that segmentation, and then delivering personalized, personalized messages to each segment.
With the support of ML and predictive analytics tools, the best target group can be identified in clear preference segments. This cut and dice activity is made extremely sharp with these three tools, and each point of preference is clearly identified for each segment and target group.
The granularity of detail that AI can provide is impressive and makes it very easy to target these segments with their personalized messaging and product. As a result, marketers can create a unique and personal customer connection. Building relationships with the target market on their terms is a huge flex in B2B marketing.
The thing is, there really isn’t a choice anymore to have AI in marketing. It has been around for a while and has also proven itself in better marketing at a much lower cost.
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Challenges for AI
However, AI also has its challenges and limitations, which could be significantly undesirable. Besides the inherent biases that AI suffers from, there is the vital issue that customers are not comfortable with bots on the other end of the line.
Even though AI is widely accepted as an intelligent substitute for humans, any communication with a non-human for marketing purposes actually becomes a bit of a barrier to building relationships. The good news is that AI will always need a human in the background to make decisions, be creative in conversations, and imaginative enough to forge a connection with the customer segment.
Then there is the question of doubts about the complete reliability of a machine-based algorithm. An AI tool can have several inherent drawbacks that can actually wreak havoc in marketing communications despite its apparent benefits. These could go well beyond racial prejudice or even geographic ignorance. One misplaced phrase could lose a customer forever, and that’s a situation an AI tool, trained in machine learning, can’t rush to solve.
Moreover, the human psyche is too complex to fit into framed formulas. In fact, business leaders even felt that AI should be regulated for any threats it might pose. There will undoubtedly come a time when customer preferences appear illogical to an AI software tool.
Deploying AI for broadcast marketing is never an easy task in terms of business activity. If this is to become part of the workflow, there is a clear need for deep integration, not only of human-machine operations, but also between existing platforms and the new AI tool. If our goal is to use AI to improve existing capabilities, this integration must be seamless, otherwise it will produce more negatives than positives.
Another issue could be the privacy and security of customer data when it is in the hands of AI tools, no matter how sophisticated. Even with the most recent security blankets, there will always be some doubt in the minds of customers about the sanctity of their personal data in the hands of a bot.
That said, new age customers seem quite comfortable sharing their data with bots like Alexa, so if the process displays transparency and robust security controls in terms of data collection and storage, this hurdle may be overcome.
The biggest problem here is the biases the AI suffers from. Inherent racial, community, linguistic, cultural and even geographic biases could just turn the tables on marketing activities. Needless to say, there will be more to lose than to gain. There are many cases where an AI bias has led to marketing disaster. But there would also be ways around these problems.
In fact, ethics and privacy boards have been created by many industry leaders, which include technical and legal experts, to assure their clients that AI projects are entirely above all else. Then doubts of all kinds can be dispelled.
Clearly, very little can be done to stop the rapid proliferation of AI in marketing strategies as an essential data analysis and segmentation tool for the proper personalization of marketing messages. Industries will find a way around the remaining doubts. These doubts are still present mainly because we, as humans, are still a bit wary of AI, given the statements made in popular media.
AI could take over the human world and rule us – ruthlessly, they tell us. But the reality is that AI, right now, is only as smart as the learnings it has been taught. Its faults and its strengths come from there. It is really in the hands of the management of the company to use the enormous potential of this technology for the marketing sector. The benefits are substantial, but the proper leverage may take decades to demonstrate.
The remaining question is: should you trust AI for marketing? The answer is obvious: do you have a choice?
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