A new study produced by Forrester and commissioned by Adgorithms, creators of Albert, shows that many organizations have been slow to adopt artificial intelligence for marketing campaigns because marketers still don’t grasp the full capabilities of today’s AI-driven platforms.
In October 2016, Adgorithms, creators of Albert, commissioned Forrester to conduct market research on the perceptions of AI-driven marketing shared by advertisers. Forrester hypothesized that “AI-driven marketing holds significant promise to marketers in driving efficiency and efficacy of their marketing programs, yet AI-driven marketing is often misunderstood or not well known today.” To test the hypothesis, the research firm conducted an in-depth survey of 150 marketing executives.
Sure enough, among other findings, the research showed that confusion around and misunderstanding of AI-driven marketing is prevalent across the industry. Many of the marketers surveyed had a narrow view of AI-driven applications, and thus failed to recognize how current advancements could help them create contextual campaigns with greater efficiency and effectiveness. Once presented with AI’s unique abilities to simplify and analyze data sets and inform marketing decisions, these same executives found artificial intelligence highly appealing.
Entitled, “AI — The Next Generation of Marketing,” the study unearthed four additional key insights:
1) There’s a Long Way to Go in Contextual Marketing
Since digital tools have greatly advanced their ability to collect and analyze customer data, marketers have shifted focus from campaign execution to creating a repeatable cycle of interactions through the context created by their data. Forrester dubbed this trend “contextual marketing,” which it defined as “delivering relevant and personalized marketing messages based on insights derived from customer profiles, relationship history, and situational context to deliver value and guide customers to the next best interaction.”
While the companies that participated in the survey believed they were executing contextual marketing with their current strategies, their actions and objectives show that campaign-centric approaches are still commonplace in marketing.
2) Perceived Complexity of AI Marketing
Contextual marketing requires an ability to analyze large data sets at a pace no human can realistically achieve, meaning that powerful tools are needed in order to manage the complexity of today’s media landscape and give control back to marketers. Only 6% of respondents were satisfied with their current approach to contextual marketing, but when asked why they hadn’t adopted AI-driven technology, they cited factors such as cost, technology selection, and integration challenges. For those who would consider adopting AI tools, concerns about privacy and transparency still remain.
3) AI Misconceptions Must Be Overcome
Over 40% of marketers currently think they deploy AI-driven technology in their marketing strategy, but most use it for programmatic media buying (which isn’t AI). While programmatic serves as a great introduction to the powerful abilities of AI, it only represents a fraction of what the technology can accomplish for digital marketers.
Survey respondents indicated that they wanted to spend less time creating reports and performing data analysis and more time strategizing and focusing on customer interactions. They also said they would like a tool that enables them to collect, analyze, review, and act upon data in real-time. Given that these are achievable through the use of AI platforms, the study concluded that marketing teams still have a poor understanding of artificial intelligence’s capabilities and applications.
4) Current Approaches Aren’t Sufficient
Like most departments in a company, marketing teams justify their expenses by making efficiency a major part of their ROI calculations. However, most respondents only expected to see incremental improvements through their current strategies. Leveraging technology that can make data-driven decisions and then execute and optimize marketing campaigns across channels would accelerate those developments considerably.
Marketers want AI to offer them deeper insights into their customers’ behavior while freeing them up to tackle the creative and strategic sides of their job — and that’s exactly what Albert can help them achieve. Albert™ is a powerful AI platform that analyzes customer data in real-time and then leverages that analysis to make autonomous decisions that deliver real ROI. Marketing teams just input creative materials and set parameters for specific campaigns, and Albert uses huge sets of data and the power of machine learning to do the rest.
AI truly is the future of marketing. Big data and a burgeoning range of media channels mean that humans are no longer able to do the analysis and research that supports good marketing campaigns on their own. Artificial intelligence can do the data crunching and leave marketers to the creative work they do best.
Register here for our webinar, Driving Competitive Advantage Throughout the Customer Lifecycle, featuring Forrester and discussing the main findings from the study. To read the complete study download the white paper, AI – The Next Generation Of Marketing here.