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THIS IS HOW AI CAN ELEVATE MARKETING
March 11, 2021
STOCKHOLM


Robotics and AI have just begun their evolution and will gradually change the game plan for almost every market and not least the marketing. Data has long been an established concept underlying the technology of machine learning. The next step is AI. This technology will have the same impact on our society as electricity had for modern civilization, meaning a big change for you and your company as well. Marketing, sales and customer service are areas where new opportunities and great potential exist with AI and companies without the technology will gradually be outcompeted.

The pandemic has definitely led consumers to choose digital store visits over physical ones. Here, companies that use artificial intelligence (AI) have a lot to gain because they can give customers better experiences. In the past, solid experience and feeling were largely used in marketing. Ads would suit everyone, regardless of channel, which forced marketers to predict what would best suit most of their audience. Today we have come a long way. The combination of digital media and AI has turned marketing into a pure science.

The struggle between different brands is largely determined by relevant experiences at the right time. In addition, consumers use multiple channels and expect personal experiences in all these different channels. Therefore, brand owners need to take into account an overall picture for each consumer, which often differs from reality with data in several silos that in the worst case are also not updated.

In a survey by the marketing company Epsilon, 80 percent of consumers stated that they are more likely to buy from companies that offer some sort of personal experience. It is important to not only understand consumers at a detailed level but also to know exactly where and how to reach them, which also has to be done in real time.

Making personal experiences for many consumers is not an easy task, it requires being able to handle enormous amounts of data. Therefore, many companies have started using AI and machine learning to better process large amounts of data in a blink of an eye.

According to a survey with 1,000 companies that was performed by McKinsey last year, only 8 percent used AI to a greater extent. Most companies were still piloting and experimenting. What characterizes the companies that use AI to a greater extent is that they tend to have generally come further in their digitization. This is happening to a greater extent in certain industries, such as financial services, telecom, media and high tech.

According to McKinsey, the companies that handle AI are best characterized by three factors. On the one hand, they tend to go from silo-based working methods to integrated working methods with cooperation between different tasks. Secondly, they change the way they make decisions closer to those who work closest to the customers, which is based not only on assessments but also on algorithms. Finally, it is also about the attitude, not just acting with as little risk as possible when you think you have the perfect answer. It is important instead to be more quick-footed, willing to adapt, experiment, perhaps realize that a decision was wrong but quickly learn so you can deliver quickly.

The next step is also to try to anticipate what consumers might likely want next and to give them that proactively. This can also be achieved for many consumers at the same time, with the help of AI and machine learning, by developing so called different recommendations based on the consumers’ interest and behaviour.

Programs with AI and machine learning become smarter the more data they are provided with, which means that over time they become better at predicting what consumers may want next. This means that the connections between consumers' actions, insight from data and marketing measures become almost immediate, which opens up for consumer experiences when they are most important – and it is all happening in real time.

Analyst firm Gartner has previously predicted that digital companies can lift their profits by as much as 15 percent by using AI to predict what consumers intend to do. The use of AI and machine learning is still relatively new in marketing. But it is starting to pick up speed and investment levels globally and the rapid pace of development indicates that AI will be the mainstay in retail and e-commerce. AI can improve the customer experience through personalization in real time.

There are economies of scale in many parts of the global economy, including digital marketing. The more customers and potential customers, the more profitable investments in AI and machine learning will be. In addition, the larger the amount of customer data, the smarter these programs become. It is also the feedback we get from many customers, that marketing is largely about being able to handle many consumers, large amounts of data and the economies of scale that AI and machine learning provide.