Technology is the gateway to lead generation and relationship building for digital marketers. So it’s no surprise that the rise of AI is changing their approach. But as AI itself evolves, some skepticism and hesitation is natural.
Will the capabilities of this emerging technology transform online marketing beyond recognition? Or can companies take advantage of it so that it becomes a positive and fertile source of disruption? Here’s how AI can impact the world of digital marketing and influence marketers’ strategies.
Laser-focused content creation
Without online content, digital marketers cannot reach their target audiences. But the content creative teams spend precious time creating, which doesn’t always impress. You can carefully map out a content strategy with every detail, including the desired results for each component. But you have to have the talent to produce those pieces at a high quality level and at a breathtaking pace.
Constantly brainstorming and executing content ideas to perfection is unrealistic, even for top teams. Inevitably, the human brain grinds to a halt. Call it writer’s block, a rut, or a creative slump. It happens to content creators all the time. And the pressure to produce something can mean pieces that do not match the aspirations of a strategy.
As the debate rages over whether AI will replace human content creators, it could be a good ally. AI can generate outlines based on inputs such as audience characteristics, keywords, and search intent. The technology is capable of building structures for entire blog posts or articles, allowing writers to focus on the points they need to reach specific audience segments.
AI tools developed by content marketing companies like MarketMuse enhance those capabilities. Of the help of ChatGPT, the tool infuses outlines with topic modeling data that can then be turned into blog posts ready for a human touch. Content teams can refine those pieces to match strategic intent.
AI saves time by streamlining the creative process. It also helps raise the bar for quality, so that published pieces yield better results and content strategies flourish.
Marketing strategies develop based on data about human behavior. However, digital marketers may discover that what they thought they knew about an audience isn’t quite right. Or the information they have is too general. It doesn’t provide enough fine-grained insights to develop a goal-shattering campaign.
Digital marketers also view market data through a subjective lens. They may miss patterns due to biases and assumptions. Even the culture of the companies marketers work for can influence the interpretation of data, such as customer surveys. Executives looking for a quick fix may unknowingly promote an “all for all” approach. Consequently, digital marketing messages become too generic.
But AI can sift through large amounts of market data without ego. The tools pick up patterns from multiple sources, including chatbot conversations and social platforms.
While AI can inform digital marketers about aggregated audience insights, it also shows what’s happening on an individual level. A customer’s past purchases of Starbucks coffee can predict whether they will use advertising messages in an app. AI helps personalize strategies so they feel more conversational.
Augmented Reality Experiences
Augmented reality is expanding the definition of content marketing. Customers are looking for more than words and videos to captivate them. A NielsenIQ survey of shoppers shows 56% say that augmented reality increases their confidence in the quality of a product. And about 61% of consumers prefer to shop with brands that provide AR experiences.
When digital marketers use augmented reality, it can influence customer behaviour, engagement and sales. The technology encourages shoppers to linger longer. They are more likely to try more products in online environments. AR experiences can also drive sales. That said, research shows the technology is more effective with brand new buyers.
Digital marketers targeting new audiences may want to incorporate augmented reality into their strategies. Retailers such as Crate & Barrel already offer this option to customers who are concerned about purchasing items such as furniture online. Exploring AR environments helps dispel sales objections by showing what purchases look and feel like in people’s homes.
These experiences can also extend to behind-the-scenes content about a brand and its locations. People unfamiliar with a company and its products can interact in a low-risk environment. They can learn more about a brand’s values, gain knowledge about what’s on offer and ‘visit’ locations they wouldn’t otherwise be able to visit. Interactive content with built-in augmented reality builds trust and interest without being pushy.
The impact of AI on digital marketing
AI promises to change the way the world works, including how digital marketers reach audiences. While relying on technology to drive interest and sales is part of a digital marketer’s playbook, AI is expanding it. With the capabilities of technology, your strategies can become more streamlined, personalized, and engagement-focused.