Exploiting AI to Engineer Marketing Strategies – A Case Study

May 09,2019 by Shashvat Vats
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The first quarter of 2019 is over and the upsurge in the amalgamation of artificial intelligence with various parts of different sectors hangs tough.

And why shouldn’t it be?

AI – the technology that promises machines to be at the same scale of human intelligence has found applicability in a number of business industries; marketing is one of them.

However, AI is in its pupillage and there is a long road ahead before the fancied vision is accomplished.

This said, applications of artificial intelligence have already penetrated the marketing sector quite ferociously and we aren’t aware of it.

Here are some of the vivid examples of AI being used in marketing sector:

Helping consumers choose the right product

Welcome to the digital world.

Here, numerous companies have hovered up on the internet to tap their customers and raise profitability.

Billions of people are on the internet and the only way to fetch your part of market share is to comprehend your target audience and provide them what they want.

To do so, the term ‘product recommendation’ – the practice of aggregating customer behaviors to forecast future actions – plays a vital role.

Amazon, the American e-commerce and cloud computing giant, started the deployment of ‘collaborative filtering’ way back in 1998 only.

Today, you can witness the same tactics being unfolded by the likes of Netflix and Spotify where they provide recommendations to users based on the latter’s behavior and preferences.

And product recommendation is sourced from artificial intelligence.

The ability to group and analyze consumer data dichotomized with profile information and statistics is a gift from AI to marketers.

For each consumer action, the AI-backed system collects and adheres with your audiences’ taste to respond with crisp suggestions customized in real time.

Take the example of Sky, a British telecom titan, which has enforced a machine learning model that is crafted to put up content in accordance with the viewers’ state of mind.

And since the premium brands are making people accustomed to highly personalized care (in the form of recommendations), same is expected from other organizations too.  

Online publishers aren’t too far behind leveraging applications of artificial intelligence in real-time.

You can witness various eminent publishers having content recommendation widget implemented on their platforms to proffer suggestions to readers.

These AI-based widgets are also known to concretize the recommendations base on audiences’ reading pattern.

So, artificial intelligence is helping the brands to put up the right products in front of customers depending on consumers’ purchasing habit or behavior.

Data dribbling and beating a dead horse

Today, the notion of marketing is often assumed to be related to promoting your brand, product, service, etc. to your audience on the web.

The colossal presence of billions of people on the internet has made marketers rush towards digital marketing tactics.

What is the most astonishing benefit of implementing marketing in present times?

You get humungous data of customer behavior.

It would be unquestionably right to conclude that marketing is driven by data today.

So, the success of your business depends on your proficiency to utilize this data to amplify customer experience, push personalization, and ensure precise targeting of your audience.

Since the clustered data is enormous, examining it and locating symmetry is an arduous challenge of human analysts.

For all those people who think we don’t need AI, here is an answer to you – AI can venture sophisticated business and evaluation tasks that humans find too complex to address and resolve.

This liberates humans to put their attention on the tasks that are more visceral and prolific work they are more fitted to execute.

Demandbase, a prominent name in account-based marketing (ABM), have implemented AI technology to filtrate organizations from its potential customers’ list that would not yield out profitability in the long run.

The Exactitude of Search Engines

Ever heard of RankBrain?

In the year 2015, Google announced that it has been using a system known as RankBrain to accelerate and streamline its search algorithm.

You are guessing right; RankBrain is an AI-backed system, which capitalizes on machine learning to comprehend users’ requirements exceptionally when they type a search query on Google.

It means the moment you write, “Artificial Intelligence” on Google, a number of suggestions hurled up based on your search behavior.

Even if RankBrain isn’t able to understand or classify a word or a phrase, it still speculates terms and patois that might have alike apprehensions and drain the outcomes accordingly.

What’s more is that RankBrain is able to update itself with time, implementing its inference on what is the future search is going to be all about.

So, AI has the competency to decode sophisticated, blurry, and crudely written long-tail search queries to provide precise results for users.

Following the footprints of Google, various e-commerce websites have deployed artificial intelligence in their search engines to ease user navigation and make product searching nimble.

This is why whenever you are shopping on Amazon or Alibaba or Flipkart, you can see a number of similar products list beyond the product you actually searched.

Applications of artificial intelligence thus stretch to identifying fitting outcomes, comprehending wrongly written words, and facilitating users to end up with products they didn’t even know they were trying to discover.

Visual AI – the power of smart images

Visual search is the new stud in the marketing sector.

It is astonishing how image searching has opened up new possibilities for marketers looking to put up their brand on the top.

If you want to see how visual search has the potential to find results that are visibly similar to one another, visit the social media platforms like Pinterest and Instagram.

But the pressing question is – how can visual search revolutionize the marketing efforts?

Visual search, which is derived from AI, has the power to enhance the merchandising experience and make shopping more personalized.

On the first look, the advancement of visual-based search makes the ‘recommended product’ feature way too outdated.

Instead of offering products on consumers’ purchase actions, visual search suggests results depending on their appearances. This eases users’ efforts who are seeking a similar looking or somewhat same appearance product.

One of America’s prominent retailers, Target and the illustrious British fashion & cosmetic retailer, ASOS, have committed big-time implementing visual search.

Target puts in motion collaboration with Pinterest in 2017 when it linked Pinterest Lens into its application. The Pinterest Lens is the image based search tool of the social media channel.

This empowered people to click a photo of any product offline and seek a similar item on Target’s website only. Sounds amazing.

Likewise, ASOS launched Style Match, a tool that works in a similar fashion and is focused to provide an extraordinary shopping experience to consumers.

Customers are empowered by these visual tools as they get the convenience to see any product anywhere in the real-world and search the same on their preferred retailer’s application.

Another advantage of image-based search is that marketers can utilize it to locate the utility of brand products and logos on social media sites. This helps marketers to pattern out the latest visual trends.

It means if you are running a brand, visual search can help you to find out who is talking about your brand, interacting with your logo, or reviewing your product, on social media sites, even when no textual reference is given.

Machine learning – it listens and observes consumers

With every brand and almost every consumer now floating on the web, it is becoming important for the marketers to weigh out their brand presence on the internet.

If people are talking about your brand on the internet, tracking such conversation brings a lot of opportunities for your marketing plan.

Applications of artificial intelligence also sheath social listening and sentiment analysis tasks for businesses.

AI helps your marketing team to analyze the attitude of prospects and customers whenever they converse about your brand on the web space, offering you an edge. You can consequently set up campaigns and target audience accordingly.

Samsung gives the best example of how social listening and sentiment analysis can do wonders for your brand.  

This South Korean multinational conglomerate worked with AI-backed consumer insight organization, Crimson Hexagon mainly to find and address customer discontentment with a red hue on the screen of its S8 mobile phones.

Typically AI-backed tools help you as a marketer or as a brand owner to comprehend what your existing and potential customers are talking about you on social media and modulate your approach to promote your offerings.

Marketers should handle this specific attribute carefully though otherwise, they would look kind of eerie and pushy.

Anticipating future trends – Enhancing CX

Being a marketer, you must be familiar with the term ‘Predictive Analytics’, which is the procedure of digging out insights from the collected information to find what’s going to trend in the future.

Predictive analysis is specifically popular with the e-commerce marketers who want to get familiar with what eludes their customers by tracking the purchase patterns.

Typically speaking, AI helps marketers to elevate the customer experience by remodeling their marketing efforts to yield positive outcomes.

Best examples of using AI-backed predictive analysis are FedEx and Sprint. FedEx uses predictive analysis to anticipate how many of its existing patrons will switch to competitors accurately.

In the same line, Sprint also classifies the set of customers more likely to cancel orders precisely.

This ensures a dip in customer churn rate and a boost in the retention percentage.

When marketers are able to successfully pinpoint the segment of customers that are about to make an exit, the former can strategize and reach out to such patrons with focused messages.

Along with this, predictive analysis can also be utilized for customer service.

AI can make precise forecasting about when the call volumes are going to climb or dive so that the company can staff the phone lines in accordance with the requirement.

Ending Statement

Believe it or not, applications of artificial intelligence also covers the copywriting division of marketing today.

Although the parameter in which the operations of AI is spread is still limited to email subject lines and product descriptions, the contribution cannot be ignored.

If you want to see how adequately and creatively machine learning can produce ad copies for your brand, contact the vendor Phrasee, which is an AI system that produces content for email marketing, push messaging and Facebook copy.

So, AI has the ability to transition the way we work, shop, promote, and sell.

Even though it is not working at even half of its potential now, artificial intelligence has the magic of doing things that weren’t possible before.

If you have witnessed exemplary ways using which any brand is deploying AI and smoothening their marketing efforts, share with us. Thanks!

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