Get a demo Do I subscribe? News sign-up
Print

McCann Japan embraces AI

News, 08 June 2016

TOKYO: The first efforts of a robot creative director have been unveiled by McCann Japan, in work for Clorets Mints, the Mondelez-owned brand.

AI-CD ß became the first machine member of the agency's creative department at the start of April, when it was also announced that it would be assigned as a creative director to client accounts and provide creative direction for commercials.

At that time Shun Matsuzaka, a creative planner behind the development of AI-CD ß, expressed the hope that the new creative director would "work on many projects, gain experience, and … grow into a world-class creative director that will leave a mark in the advertising industry".

The 30-second spot it has created for Clorets is being run alongside work created by a human director, with the Japanese public being invited to vote for the one they prefer, Ad News reported. But McCann hasn't said which is which; the results of the poll will be revealed in late August.

"The strength of AI-CD ß is that it is free of bias or habits in the way of thinking that can limit human creators," Matsuzaka said. "This allows it to come up with creative direction that humans would never think of."

That was certainly reflected in its response to Mondelez's request to explain the product's benefits: it freshens the mouth immediately with one tablet, and the freshness lasts for 10 minutes.

While the human director came up with "convey a clear refreshing message", Advertising Age reported that AI-CD ß was rather more opaque: "convey 'wild' with a song in an urban tone, leaving an image of refreshment with a feeling of liberation".

A different use of AI is being developed by IBM, with interactive "Watson Ads" allowing consumers to ask questions by voice or text and get a response based on its machine learning and reasoning ability from the data it has ingested.

So a request for ideas for dinner, for example, would result in Watson sorting through ingredient and flavour profiles to make recommendations based on factors such as the weather, time of day, location and ingredients users have to hand – all surfaced via dynamic ads.

Data sourced from Ad News, Advertising Age, Ad Week; additional content by Warc staff