The really exciting part about artificial intelligence (AI) is that it is finally moving from being just some kind of fantastic sci-fi premise (super-intelligent robots!) to becoming a real, practical technology that digital marketers can actually use.
AI vs. data analytics
In fact, you can think of AI as just a superior form of data analytics or social media metrics that you already use. Take a data analysis tool that you probably already use in your daily marketing life – Google’s analytics package. Using this tool, you can see which visitors are coming to your website, which pages they are visiting, and which search terms brought them in the first place. You can also see which devices they are using and which browsers they are using. But here’s the thing: Google gives you all the charts and data, but you – the human – needs to figure it all out. The same is true when you start diving into Facebook or Twitter user data.
What’s going to change with AI is that, soon, machines will be able to make the same kinds of inferences that humans can. Moreover, they will be able to find the types of relationships in the data that you (or your marketing team) cannot. For example, an AI-powered application would be able to tell you not only when peak activity on your social media platforms occur, but also what characteristics the best-performing pieces of content have in common, or what the average “buyer personas” on your different social media platforms look like.
How marketing will change as a result of AI
The marketing industry will still be the same – there will be leads, sales funnels and conversions. However, each of these will become a lot easier to analyze using AI-powered applications and software. In some cases, you will actually be able to predict user behavior using insights provided from AI. For example, instead of messing around with a lot of A/B testing to see what the “perfect” marketing message is for a Facebook ad, you will know in advance how well a message will likely perform. You won’t have a magic crystal ball (nobody does), but you’ll eliminate much of the guesswork in crafting the perfect marketing campaign.
Ways to use AI in social media marketing
Putting it all together, there are several ways that AI will likely influence the world of social media:
- AI will enable the creation of hyper-personalized marketing messages
- AI will provide more robust buyer and customer personas
- AI will make it easier to distinguish between qualified leads and unqualified leads
- AI will enable bots to converse with prospects on just about any topic
An example of AI at work in social media
How you choose to embrace the brave new world of AI is up to you. For some brands, it might mean the creation of multiple taglines for multiple customer niches. For example, consider the example of Coca-Cola. What if Coca-Cola could use AI to create personalized marketing messages for different demographic groups that could be used across different social media platforms at different times of the day or night, in multiple different languages and dialects?
For example, if the Coke AI marketing bot knows that a Facebook follower prefers to speak Spanish rather than English, wouldn’t it make more sense to send a marketing message in Spanish? If the Coke AI marketing bot knows that you live in Philadelphia, it might send a very different marketing message than if it knows you live in New England. For example, Coke’s ads appearing in your Facebook feed might show images of your favorite Eagles players enjoying a nice, refreshing Coke after the game and vice versa.
In many ways, then, AI is not just about software and machines getting smarter, it’s also about marketers getting smarter. What once took you hours to analyze and decipher might be possible in just a few seconds – and that will free you up to focus on what really matters for all of your social media marketing clients.