With AI’s ability to organise large amounts of unstructured data generated by social media, Windchimes Communications’ Nimesh Shah says marketers will not only be able to leverage artificial intelligence for content and web development but also consumer understanding and targeting.
Let’s get this out of the way: AI didn’t write this article although it could very well do so. So no surprise in the last line stating that the first 200 words were written by AI.
Artificial Intelligence is neither a magic wand to solve your business program nor the demon that will take away jobs. It created a flutter because of its innate ability to structure the data around us and make sense of it. We generate petabytes of data every year but it’s all unorganised and unstructured. AI will connect the dots and help formulate a clear, workable plan of action.
What is AI and how is it different from machine learning
Artificial intelligence is a technology that a computer uses to perform tasks on its own by “thinking” like a human. The goal is to simulate natural intelligence to solve complex problems. Good examples of AI are Apple Siri, Google Assistant, Tesla self-driving cars, Amazon Alexa, etc.
Machine learning is a computer system that automatically learns from past data and doesn’t have to be programmed. It is a subset of AI and data science. The goal is to learn from data on specific tasks to maximise the performance on that task. Good examples of machine learning are Google search engines, Twitter sentiment analysis, stock prediction etc.
The AI continuum in digital media
What AI is going to do is revolutionise (because the word change seems too mild) most of the facets of our life. It has been around for a while. Think those friend recommendations on Facebook, Amazon’s related products recommendations, Netflix’s prompts of new, related series and those chatbots (Eva, Ava, Ewa) on most corporate sites today.
It has been learning and hence, is primitive in its manifestation. This changed with ChatGPT’s entry. What blew us away was the quality of results it could regurgitate. It was fed with datasets until September 2021 and the results were astounding. The paid version might even be more up-to-date.
With the entry of ChatGPT, we have taken an enormous leap in the AI continuum and there is no going back.
Digital media ecosystem 2023 and beyond
As mentioned, AI's biggest strength is organising unstructured data. Using AI applications, marketers will now be able to make sense of the enormous amount of data generated in social media. The decision-making will be sharper and more precise.
Increased share of wallet
I prompted ChatGPT to give me an analysis of the Indian luggage industry, along with the growth rate and top brands operating in it. The result was incredible. For the first time, I didn’t Google and visit five sites to find information. Perhaps that is the reason why Google is dreading it so much.
As more data sets are fed into AI, it will help marketers build a robust product launch plan. There will be much more clarity on the markets to enter, the niche they can occupy and the share of gain or wallet they can target within a stipulated timeline. Examples are ChatGPT, genei.io, iris.ai and wisdom.ai.
Significant reductions in costs
Improved content output
The most impacted area is the creative industry, be it copy, design, art, video, music or photography. It’s faster, easier and cheaper to get a background score for one of the videos or images, vectors and even paintings. Get product learning videos, pitch presentations to investors or even a name for your new business idea – this will have significant impact, given how brands need to have near real-time interaction with users.
Recently, BuzzFeed CEO Jonah Peretti announced that the company would be using AI to significantly enhance it editorial and quizzes, while also personalising content for users.
A significant amount of client servicing tasks like content scheduling, posting and identifying key trends, hashtags and topics will get completely automated. AI applications will know the ideal platforms to post on, the day and time to publish it, the best content format and relevant hashtags and current trends to ride on.
It would also help brands republish their old content at an appropriate time to gain more traction. It will weed out spam and abusive comments and moderate the quality of discussions taking place. Examples of AI apps for content and servicing are DALL-E 2, midjourney.com, magiceraser.io for images; Jasper.ai, writesonic.com and frase.io (content); synthesia.io, runwayml.com and lumen5.com (video); stockimg.ai (stock images); Open AI – Jukebox, aiva.ai, boomy.com (music); beautiful.ai (presentations); namelix.com (finding a name for business); copy.ai, trypencil.com (better ad copy).
So now you can get AI to do a website for you with a few prompts. It can write website or app code based on your command prompt. Or if you are a developer, you can punch in your code and get the AI app to check it for you. It highlights the bugs or security holes that you can quickly fix.
Watch Twitter user Zain Kahn generate images, copy and videos using AI to build his furniture business website. Imagine the number of hours he has saved with this quick turnaround.
Examples of AI apps for web development are flatlogic.com, weblium.com and durable.co.
Sharper consumer understanding and targeting
After creative, the next segment with the most impact is data analytics. AI and machine learning programs will help marketers get more robust and analysed data. AI applications will study online consumer behaviour, read user comments and reviews, connect the dots from all the analytics and build a set of sharp customer profiles for the brand.
Marketers can use this consumer data to draw insights and create effective brand keys and propositions, and build a communication roadmap for their brands. In future, AI will be the autopilot for your brand’s journey and raise an alert should the subsequent advertising campaigns take it off-track.
Programmatic online advertising or performance marketing will get a shot in the arm. A robust consumer understanding would result in sharper copy and targeting. It will check for the most optimised mediums to reach out to the potential TG, calculate the cost of reaching out on each platform, verify if the message is resonating and determine an ideal time to send it out. Retargeting campaigns will become more effective with increased CTRs (click through rate) and reduced CPCs (cost per click).
Examples of AI apps for advertising are Albert.ai, Hyros.com, and for landing pages, headlime.com.
Stronger brand P&L
Eliminate wastage and fraud
The biggest plague impacting digital media is advertising fraud, where bots create fake clicks and inflate numbers. AI and machine learning will “learn” patterns in data sets and raise alerts should the numbers increase on specific mediums or with particular creatives. Media waste will be drastically cut.
Machine learning is used in behavioural analytics to analyse and predict behaviour at a granular level across all aspects of a transaction. This ensures ad fraud is detected earlier and prevented, promoting more confidence in online advertising.
Improved cash flow and growth projection
Business performance analytics will provide a real-time view of the cash flow to the entrepreneur. Along with that, prepare a list of clients and products or services generating more profits than others. Also, predictive analysis by AI will give a robust forecast of business growth. Rationalising resources will ultimately increase business profitability.
Effective brand partnerships
AI applications will be able to identify the relevant influencers for each brand based on their content and impact created previously. They will help the brand build more long-term associations with particular sets of influencers as those will provide maximum value to the brands. There will be more data to evaluate and select the relevant influencers.
Rewarding customer loyalty program
AI ability also shines through, evaluating user sentiment from the hundreds of online comments and reviews. It can wade through thousands of data points and produce a personalised response for each user. It can also build a personalised user behaviour map with enough time and data. Marketers will use that to create more rewarding loyalty programs and chatbots for faster interactions. This will reduce the churn rate of their customers as issues are tackled faster and appropriately, possibly even pre-empt specific requirements and provide customer delight.
Examples are landbot.io, boost.ai, digitalgenius.com and mywave.me.
Business impact on Indian agencies
In the US and western Europe, AI will help agencies cater to smaller budget retainer clients as their content creation and servicing costs will drop but not so much in South Asian countries, including India, where our agencies in Tier 2 and 3 rung service clients are at an already low monthly retainer.
However, gig economy workers and newly formed startups (which cannot afford an agency) will be able to generate better quality content and begin promoting their brands on social media much earlier.
Will AI take away digital media jobs?
No. AI is simulating human behaviour, so it will always be a step behind, so to speak, or at least not until it gathers gigantic proportions of intelligence. The real world is dynamic and complex, so the human mind will always stay ahead in terms of creativity and complex problem-solving.
What AI will do for sure is kill mediocrity. There is no space for people who deliver mediocre work. We all have to find our core competence and become good at it.
It will be a constant fight to value add more than the next AI app. If you are an analyst, draw sharper forecasts and insights. If you are a writer, script better copy or screenplays. If you are a composer, produce better tracks and melodies.
Consumer expectations are increasing and much higher than before. The only way to meet them is by leveraging AI. It’s time to learn more and embrace it, even though not all of this will happen tomorrow. However, the biggest mistake one would make is to underestimate it, as change is already here.