THE AI MARKETING CONUNDRUM: LEGITIMATE OR PONZI?
Still, wondering how Myntra notified you about that shirt you wanted, but couldn’t make up your mind about? Then you’re at the right place.
The past couple of decades saw, what we can safely call, the Internet Revolution. With the Internet becoming easily and abundantly accessible to every single person across the globe, it became essential for every businessman to take their business online.
The ease of conducting business, moreover the ease of availing those services, has given a major boost to these businesses. However, due to the accessibility of the internet and the coming up of new start-ups, this space has become increasingly competitive. In this competitive market, only those will succeed who adapt to the change or rather be the change. For this to happen it becomes imperative to be highly receptive to even the slightest of changes in the behaviour of consumers, and the economic forces.
BENEFITS OF AI MARKETING
To conquer this ever-changing changing market and to stay ahead of it, products have to be marketed intelligently. For this AI is the perfect tool, the tool which if used correctly wouldn’t just help you deal with the changing market, but predict it well in advance. Marketers have gained a better understanding of the market, its nuances, and the preferences of the target audience as a result of AI Marketing. With this in effect, marketers can improve their marketing campaigns and increase operational efficiency, leading to a wider customer base. In addition to consolidating customer data and predicting market trends, AI is also used by marketers to improve their marketing efficiency. AI has the ability to analyze customer profiles and data, consequently drafting messages and notifications for the customer and sending those at the right time, that too without any extra human effort, saving valuable time and effort.
And yes, this is exactly how Myntra, or any other e-commerce platform, sends you those notifications.
MISCONCEPTIONS AND ARGUMENTS
Many people still argue that AI Marketing cannot replicate the human touch or the nuances of personalization in human marketing, and hence, isn’t a powerful tool. Moreover, unlike indicators such as ROI or profit which are quantifiable, benefits of AI such as better customer satisfaction or brand reputation aren’t quantifiable, and hence, often ignored. However, it would be daft to just abandon AI over this argument because it is only AI that can crunch large chunks of data, process numbers, and analyze patterns in data which could seem useless to us humans, converting them from ‘data’ to ‘actionable data’ in a matter of just a few seconds. Additionally, to provide quantitative backing to AI, I would like to shed light on the $1 Billion which Netflix saved in revenues by making personalized recommendations by making use of machine learning in 2017.
Not just Netflix, AIfluence, a Kenya-based AI-driven Influencer Marketing Start-up, recently raised $1 Million in seed investment. Founded by Nelson Aseka, George Issaias, Lamusia Anzaya, and Ankit Jindal, AI Marketing happens to be the core of AIfluence’s marketing product. What AIfluence does is that it assesses the behaviour of the target audience and analyses the content they consume. Based on these findings, AIfluence is able to find the perfect influencer which would have the maximum impact on the given audience. It is a backward approach that they follow, but one worth a million dollars.
The scope of AI marketing is not just restricted to corporates, but non-profits can also benefit from the wide potential of AI-driven marketing. They can be assisted in routine tasks by automating repetitive tasks, reducing the risk of human inputting errors, and accelerating accurate data collection. An important need for every NGO is fundraising and AI marketing could be of significant help here. AI could easily spot the people who’d be willing to donate for your cause, based on the content these people consume and how they react to it. AI marketing will also take care of sending out project details, financials, etc to the potential donors themselves. Furthermore, AI will maintain data of donors/supporters, control costs, and manage administrative operations within the organization. AI-based chatbots can help with customer service and FAQs such as money donation queries, addressing budget questions, or information about ongoing and upcoming programs.
However, in the Indian context, how will NGOs already burdened with financial tribulations and inadequate resources, fund the use of this technology? Primarily, through government intervention.
In order to create a level playing field, NITI Aayog announced a national strategy for the promotion and equitable use of AI. Through this strategy, the think tank aims to form a cohesive outlet of essential public data by creating a formal marketplace portal, known as the National AI Marketplace or NAIMS. Although the materialization of the plan is in progress, the implementation of this strategy and the development of the portal shall play a key role in dispensing the major challenges faced by indigent social startups and NGOs.
With Gartner predicting that by 2022, 33% of all data analyst jobs in marketing will be taken over by AI itself, AI has already taken the forefront in the marketing industry,
AI is a world of infinite possibilities but combined with marketing, it is an unstoppable force. Looking at how AI is progressing, I wouldn’t be surprised if one day AI is able to determine what I need, when I need it, and how much of it I need, even before I know it myself.