2018 saw a lot of change in the marketing world, just like every other year. AI was in the hot seat, with advances in global computing power driving the push towards both personalisation and automation of marketing tasks and channels.
This has left us with 2019 primed fully for an AI explosion. There’re blogs posted every minute on the subject, and we wanted to use our own to bust some of the myths that are – and will be – posted on the internet so frequently.
Myth 1: Personalisation scales
Common, and oh what a dream it would be if it were true!
The problem is, it isn’t. Marketers are realising the power of AI and machine learning, and they’re aware that automation is a way to leverage new computing power and tech.
Thinking in such a way is, in fact, a barrier to the true adoption of AI in marketing. Spreading buzzwords and easily written notions like this is confusing the marketing community, and steering people away from embracing the actual power and benefits available in this emerging subject.
Myth 2: AI will solve everything
We all love a good dopamine rush, and there are few better out there than pinning your frustrations and job goals on a single thing!
Back to reality, now. Many marketers are consuming content that tells them that AI is the single, liberating thing that will make their jobs easier. This is true, but not in the way they think. They’re often missing something.
That something is data. Ask any results-driven professional, particularly in the marketing sphere, about the importance of it.
Most companies are bad at data. It takes recruitment of genuine talent – a tough find in this sector – and a reordering of many processes and ways of working to get things where they need to be.
The problem is, if you have awful data, you’ll have awful results from your AI investment.
Having robust, well-ordered data sets, and even knowing what you have and in what quantity, are the starting points for using AI well. Without data, machine learning can’t work.
It’s simple when you think about it: AI works off data, and all the machine learning in the world won’t bear fruit if that data is poor.
Think about Netflix as an example: It’s a cornerstone of most of the world’s recreation now, and its massive success and powerful, binge-inducing algorithms are as good as they are because the data they have is utterly enviable in its size, granularity and overall quality.
Myth 3: AI is going to make me lose my job
Wrong. We see this subject a lot in the general news, and there’s no denying that automation in sectors like factory work, logistics and some areas of retail is removing the need for low or unskilled labour.
As you might imagine, though, marketing isn’t unskilled by any means.
AI will reduce the time that is spent by valuable professionals on tasks that aren’t as valuable, simply put. We’ve all seen £400 a day contractors obliged to do simple data entry, and the sight of a Marketing Manager updating spreadsheets and performing other menial tasks is common even today.
AI won’t get these people fired – not by a long shot. It will, instead, free their time to allow them to focus on the areas of their jobs that produce the most value. That’s a good thing.
Perhaps hundreds of years in the future that spectre of job loss via automation will creep further towards skilled jobs, but it won’t happen today – or likely in our lifetimes, even.
Food for thought
An interesting subject from the Digiconomy nerds! Our speculation is based on experience and fact-finding, and we hope you’ve found our take on the rise of AI in marketing to be interesting and of value to you and your career.
We’re right here to chat directly if you have the need. You know the rest – email and call us if you’d like to know more. We’re rather good at it all, if we may be so bold!