Why Humans Need AI in Marketing, and Marketing is Painful Otherwise?
The short answer is — AI thinks better and faster than humans when it comes to big amounts of information. It may process gigabytes of data in seconds, which takes days, weeks and months for humans. A cherry on the top, artificial intelligence is more comfortable than human intelligence in dealing with numbers and tables, which is the very soul of modern marketing.
It sounds like a high school textbook, does it? To get why AI marketing is cool, we need to go deeper into what marketing is.
Meet Sir George. Sir George was a first mass marketer on the Earth.
For him, the hardship of marketing was limited to the means of mass media production. As long as Sir George owned paper, ink and printers, he owned the world of advertising.
The time passed, and Sir George revealed that not all advertisements and products went well. He learned that consumers actually had behavior, geographical distribution, interests and also various income, among dozens of other parameters. They all affected the efficiency of advertising, promotion, design and all other stuff that marketing involved. Even though there were not so many ways to track ads efficiency, data appeared in marketing for the first time.
This data was too much for Sir George to embrace, and consumers on the market were not pleased.
Thankfully, Sir George had lots of money, so he hired hundreds of marketers — clerks that would analyze consumer responses to advertisements, collect data about their behavior and make changes to advertising campaigns.
Marketers worked hard day and night, and now Sir George was on the top of the modern world again. At that moment, he did not even trouble himself of thinking and spent all his time playing golf.
Now, even more years forward, there were computers, the Internet, and the social media. Which led to the big data revolution. Data about consumers, their behavior and interests became more detailed and complicated. Facebook alone provided information about user’s age, education, interests, devices they use, the time where the ad has been seen, ads’ price — as well as hundreds of other factors. It became much more affordable and easier to collect and process data, so businesses appeared in a situation when they had terabytes of data without putting any efforts.
It was too much for a single person, or even for the whole team. Sir George’s marketers were in trouble.
Now, marketers could not rely solely on numbers and tables – they provided 0 understanding of what’s going on. Instead, they needed a tool that would help them to embrace data and find insights there that would be useful. With the development of cloud services, marketers discovered their new friend — graphs and figures on dashboards.
Dashboards looked like a grasp of fresh air in the world of digital marketing. They visualized complex figures and numbers into fancy-looking and understandable graphs and charts. Moreover, they could retrieve data directly from social media and web-analytics, write emails and even quarterly reports! Also, they were fancy enough to be shown to Sir George — executives love graphs, you know.
However, the benefits of dashboards were deceptive, and soon marketers realized that dashboards were nothing but Sir George’s trick to make them suffer. Data scientists, who watched all history of Sir George and marketers’ relationships, revealed many issues in traditional charts and visualizations.
First, dashboard’s visualization appeared simplified data. Real data has multiple dimensions, like 3D objects — say, building — and graphs provided only limited illustrations of them – plans. In order to understand real marketing situation, marketers had to watch tens and hundreds of diagrams, trying to find insights — facts that are both true and bring value to the business.
Second, it was revealed that marketing analysts spend up to 80% of their time trying to find anything of value on diagrams and charts that dashboards provided. It meant that marketing — which is creative activity — could take only one-fifth of the time. Thus, dashboards, which look simple at a glance can really cinfuse analyst after a closer look. And even lead to wrong decisions.
Third, data scientists concluded that human brain is unable to comprehend multidimensional data. While we know what 3D objects are, we cannot embrace them at one time. If we could, a human would have looked to us like this.
Marketing data can have much more than three dimensions — indeed, it can have hundreds of dimensions at once (Google Analytics actually has 120). It is like trying to show the relation between click-through rate, the age of users, their interests and time of ad publication via plotting a single graph. However, Sir George’s marketers were already unpleased to meet 3D data and did not require more humiliation.
Thus, marketers appeared in the situation where they were spending more and more time to analyze marketing data and retrieved lesser and lesser valuable results. Even the prestige of marketer’s profession become falling. They looked like voodoo wizards who try to communicate with spirits by talking with meaningless graphs and charts.
OK, We’ve Got that Traditional Marketing Is Bad, so What About AI Marketing?
Data scientists could not watch quietly on marketers, who suffer under the united tyranny of Sir George and dashboards. Thus, they decided to create a non-human creature that would be able to analyze marketing data efficiently and find only insights — the information that marketers needed, hidden in the data.
This is how artificial marketing intelligence was born.
AI brought many changes to marketing. Being placed on cloud computing servers, machine intelligence was not bound to human brain limitations and could process many gigabytes of data at once. However, the most important novelty was AI’s ability to reveal insights automatically — just like a marketer would do after processing dozens of graphs and charts with thousands of data points in each.
In some areas AI went even further – it started to make the decisions. This is how programmatic ads appeared for example, where algorithm decides which people to target with your ads on which websites based on your settings.
However, marketer might be unsure, which audience to reach, which creative to use – marketing today is about more and more variables. Unlike the marketer, AI can reveal all issues critical to performance. For instance, in GeoTrap case, Captain Growth AI processed data from 1862 regions to find the best-performing ones for targeting, which helped Captain’s client to save $20,000 in 20 days of the campaign. Clients’ marketers could not easily process such tremendous amount of data, so they were more likely to skip this task and base decisions on the country-level targeting. Machines can go deeper with their analytics and this way save a lot of money for companies.
Why AI managed to think better than humans? Reasons appear to be simple.
- The analytical ability was granted to AI by machine learning — it is being learned on huge data sets, which are bigger than any human being have ever seen. That’s why it understands data much better – experience is bigger
- AI is not confused by a multi-dimensional space – it was born in one. So it can easily move from 90-dimensions to 74 and another way around, while we’re still driven crazy by Interstellar tricks. Thus insights found by AI are more accurate.
- After continuous processing of the big amount of data, AI learned how to customize to unique needs of each user, getting accustomed to their strategy and approach to marketing.
Moreover, insights found by AI can be browsed via simple feed — like on Facebook or Instagram, where marketers spent their limited free hours after digging into graphs and charts for Sir George’s sake.
With AI, marketers devote to analysis only 20% of their time — and 80% of the time is free for creative value-adding activities. It ultimately leads to more profit and better quality of work. Dashboards are not needed anymore, and marketers can now be free from their analytical burden.
How AI for Marketing Makes Each Business Independent?
AI also changed power distribution in marketing and business. As you already know, Sir George was successful in his trade because he had money — and could hire as many marketers as he needed. Other business people could not afford it, so they remained at the bottom of the marketing world, while Sir George dominated at the top.