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What is artificial intelligence in marketing? (Ep1)

In this 5-episode series, Paul Roetzer, Founder & CEO of PR 20/20, sits down with HubSpot Product Manager of Machine Learning, Kevin Walsh, to discuss the applications of artificial intelligence in digital marketing.

What is AI? To Paul, it is the umbrella term to encompass technologies and algorithms designed to make machines smart, with machine learning being the primary subset.

Machine learning can be defined as making predictions on future outcomes based on historical data. The key to machine learning is that the machines are getting smarter and their predictions are getting better without any human intervention.

Artificial Intelligence in Marketing

Use AI to help make decisions.

Audience targeting and automatic content creation are just a few of the many ways AI can be used to help grow your user base and increase sales.

This video presents how some startups are applying AI to the marketing space and then programmatically walk through some AI techniques like matrix factorization, SVD, and LSTM neural networks that help a marketer outperform the competition and get the optimal results for their business.

Some existing services to use:

Appier.com – Aims to provide artificial intelligence (AI) platforms to help enterprises solve their most challenging business problems, including audience prediction.

Drawbridge.com – Connects, unifies, and supercharges customer data to create a complete view of the people you do business with, including predicting times types of users will be on a specific platform.

InsideSales.com – Delivers an AI-powered SaaS platform to guide sales teams to build better pipeline and close more of the right deals, including helping to find 20% of customer base that will convert

Persado.com – Persado applies mathematical certainty to words to help create phrases and words for content that drives action.

AI and The Super Future

AI keynote speaker & NY Times Bestselling innovation author Jeremy Gutsche dives into artificial intelligence and the AI mechanized future in an AI talk that explores how artificial intelligence trends will change your future, particularly as you combine innovation in AI with robotics, interface, bio enhancement, 3d printing, mind reading, sustainability and thought control.

This AI speech is different than most of Jeremy’s innovation keynote speaker videos in that he dives into a lot more detail about a few specific AI-related trends, versus his normal style of storytelling. Compared to other AI keynote speakers, Jeremy takes a higher level view about how AI impacts a variety of different industries.

His AI & The Super Future keynote was the final keynote at Future Festival World Summit.

In this AI keynote, Jeremy also shares insight from his company’s artificial intelligence transformation. In short, he talks about some of the lessons learned from launching Trend Hunter AI and learning how to leverage your existing data.

4 Blockchain Benefits for Marketers

Marketing hype around the benefits of blockchain have largely focused on the financial sector.  However, the promise of opportunities for all industries and commerce in general is often advised. In brief, blockchain provides more efficient financial and informational transactions.  It also facilitates greater transparency and accountability.  And all for lower cost.

The fact that blockchain can also eliminate or minimize middlemen along operational or supply lines will disrupt the world by itself.

But what are the benefits of blockchain for the marketing and advertising sector?

The following article, How Blockchain Can Help Marketers Build Better Relationships with Their Customers, expands upon the following even further.  In brief, here are four blockchain benefits for marketers.

  • The Marketing Impact of Near-Zero Transaction Costs: Are 3% payment processing fees really worth it? Especially when margins for many companies are getting slimmer all the time? With blockchain those fees are practically nonexistent.
  • Ending the Google-Facebook Advertising Duopoly: In 2018 it’s hard to imagine a marketing plan that does not include Google Ads or Facebook Ads, or both. But it wasn’t that long ago that Facebook ads didn’t exist.  It wasn’t that much longer ago when Google Ads didn’t exist. But what if we could connect directly with consumers and pay them for their attention? They are rightfully the ones who should benefit from the marketing relationship. Personally, it’s hard for me to imagine Google and Facebook going away and it’s highly probable they have some of their best minds working on how they can use blockchain to still be relevant to marketers in the future. One thing is for future. The marketing and advertising landscape will be changing and both consumers and marketers will be the primary beneficiaries. (Especially consumers).
  • Ending Marketing Fraud and Spam: Two blockchain factors will be working against fraudsters and spammers: Transparency and micropayments, enabled by point 1 above (near zero transparency fees). It will be much harder for bad actors to hide in a blockchain world. Although I wouldn’t suggest that it will become impossible, it will be fundamentally more challenging. The internet, up to now, has made it ‘not’ challenging to be an anonymous bad actor online. The inherent transparency of blockchain will force some bad apples to go straight and others to go elsewhere. And the fact that that there could be an opportunity for companies to pay for consumers to click their links means that spammers would be pushed aside due to unworkable economics.
  • Remonetizing Media Consumption: Paying true content creators for their work is an overdue promise of the internet and may finally be delivered via blockchain. Rightful ownership of property via smart contracts is a cornerstone benefit of blockchain. Figuring out how to manage the commerce of such is being figured out in the present.

In recent years I have started becoming jaded about the internet, which may have taken me longer than others, since those of us who jumped on the internet in the mid ’90s would have been pioneers of that earlier world-changing technology. And although the world was indeed changed in profound and meaningful ways, personally, I found it disheartening to find such a massive opportunity for good also be used for less than good, as well.

Blockchain has reignited my own earlier vision of not only what the internet could be, but what a better world could be.

Blockchain: A New Marketing Paradigm

Eventually (in the not-too-distant future), blockchain will impact most commerce.  It will make business and operations more efficient, more accountable, more transparent and less expensive.

The rise of cryptocurrencies as a speculative asset, culminating at the end of 2017, as well as the crypto bear market of 2018, may dominate the hype cycle, but the real work of blockchain development is still in an early stage of changing the world.

In terms of blockchain as a base platform for practical applications, the financial technology sector has captured a chunk of the spotlight and the battle lines are being drawn for a new era.  How much (or little) traditional banks and governments will be able to influence global exchange of value is in the process of being determined.

However, all sectors can, and ultimately will, be influenced by blockchain.

On a fundamental level, blockchains cut out expensive middlemen such as banks and lawyers, so the opportunities for increased productivity are significant.

In relation to marketing, the following article, 7 Ways to Build Your Brand with Blockchain Marketing, suggests a new marketing paradigm:

By contrast, the blockchain offers a different approach to digital ads and marketing. The decentralized, peer-to-peer model brings the customer into equal, dynamic dialogues with businesses, and lets customers generate monetized marketing content for their favorite brands through that engagement. This implies that in the earned media blockchain ecosystem, we are all equal and active partners.

Perhaps one of the more interesting opportunities for marketers is the promise of bypassing advertising middlemen, such as Google and Facebook, and putting messages directly in front of those who are interested.  At a reduced cost, no less.  In fact, the ad payments would go to those consuming the messages. (And/or those creating messages for the brand).

Of course, in the same way that banks are going to do their best to stay relevant, by placing themselves within the blockchain, advertising middlemen, Google, Facebook, et al, will do the same. It seems probable that their ban on crypto ads this year is an attempt to pause the momentum so they can evaluate the space to their advantage.

I do not suspect that Google and Facebook will go away (although some other intermediaries probably will).  They need ad revenue to survive and they’ll figure out some way to maintain a slice of that pie.  However, expect  that names of companies with whom we are yet not familiar, will come to be just as well known, and perhaps more so, for no other reason than providing more value for less cost.

Regardless of how the advertising media landscape plays out, marketers and consumers will win.