“A.I.” and “Marketing”: two words you’re either completely sick of hearing, or two words that you’d expect together less than Sharknado without sharks. Either way, it’s a conversation that you must be having if you’re marketing your business because it’s here to stay…
Unlike Sharknado. (Thank goodness.)
But, let’s be real, there are a LOT of bros out there (and bro-marketers) ready to make a quick buck on this new emerging field, and – to put it lightly – they’re selling you a bunch of bullshit.
So, where do you go to get real, solid, transparent, honest advice? Fear not! We’re here to help!
The bottom line is this –
In today’s digital landscape, you either adapt and get with the A.I. program, or you risk becoming as outdated as someone playing that snake game on an OG cellphone in 2023.
Sure, we’re attached, but some things are better left in the past, mmmm’kay?
Because A.I. won’t replace you – but entrepreneurs leveraging A.I. in their business WILL replace you (and this is true no matter your business).
To remain competitive now is the time to set the fear aside without setting the entire conversation aside.
In this blog, we’ll dive into all the things you’re thinking about, worrying about, and wondering about, including the easiest way for you to jump into A.I. while balancing your (very fair and real) concerns.
Understanding AI in Marketing
It doesn’t matter if you’re using A.I. now or not – or even if you fear it or not – your potential customers are already being impacted by it and it will change everything as we know it.
Bill Gates called it “the most important advance in technology since the graphical user interface.” And we don’t think he’s wrong.
A.I. will not only change how we operate, and our productivity, but it will also change how we think.
Yes, it will give us more brain space for things other than the pesky tasks we hate doing day after day, but it will also impact how our consumers think and behave.
Just imagine this:
In 6 months to a year from now, every business and entrepreneur out there has some collaborative process with A.I. in how they create marketing, from using something like Lately.Ai to create their content to having ChatGPT create their content from scratch to using Content at Scale (like we do) – or even create their entire digital marketing strategy (which we don’t recommend – but more on this later)...
Right down to politicians using A.I. and predictive analysis to write and tailor their campaign messages and speeches.
When we know that A.I. has integrated everywhere, but we don’t have transparency as to what parts are from A.I. what does that do to who we trust, how we trust, and where we spend our money?
Considering that trust is one of the main concerns in marketing right now, this is an aspect of consumer behavior that absolutely every single business needs to be thinking through in how you show up.
And it’s exactly the kinds of things you need to be thinking about.
So, yes, there’s a macro and micro approach to talking about and using A.I. in digital marketing:
There are macro conversations about the impacts on society, humanity, the economy, shit – our entire future.
But there are also micro conversations about what tools to start with and just how to get started.
Best part? There’s no right answer here. It’s peak FAFO (F*ck Around and Find Out).
So, let’s get into it…
Getting Started with Marketing AI
Getting started with A.I. can feel incredibly daunting. There are a million and one tools and a million and two people (including a dog or two) who are selling the “right” way to use A.I.
So here’s your invitation to ignore every last one of them.
Yep. Every tool and every person (even us if you feel like it).
Because there are only two things we suggest even thinking about when figuring out how to get started with AI.
Become A Scientist.
There is so much opportunity here for innovation and experimentation in your marketing efforts. You don’t have to have all the right answers to get started, you just have to get started to find the answers.
So, we encourage you to put on your lab coat and safety goggles and dump that fixed mindset for an open one.
There is a limitless opportunity here for you if you go looking for it.
Whether your vibe is more Bill Nye, Ms. Frizzle, or Jillian Holtzmann, just get into it!
Decide on the Use Case Before the Tool
Tools are a-dime-a-dozen. You can find one for almost any repeatable task that you want to outsource and they can reduce your time spent on these tasks while actually increasing your results. (Also, highly suggest you check out that link. It’s a fascinating MIT study!)
Which is great, if you know what you need it to do.
And an absolute black hole if you’re just burning through tools for shits & giggles.
So, decide on the use case first and the tool second.
Ask yourself this: “What are the tasks that I do daily or weekly that suck up the majority of my time and could be done without me?” Whether it’s social media content, video editing, first drafts on emails or blogs, billing, etc. there’s probably a tool for it that can do it with A.I.
This way you’re not wasting spending all your time down rabbit holes that aren’t applicable to you – which is the opposite of what A.I. should do!
Just keep in mind that while AI can be incredibly powerful for businesses looking for a competitive edge over their competitors – ultimately success still comes down to the human creativity and strategy behind its usage; something no amount of technology can replace.
We never, ever, advise outsourcing your critical thinking to any A.I. tool That’s the fastest way to lose yourself to the A.I., instead of collaborating with it.
And because we know you’re going to ask, yes, we’ll share our favorite tools!
AI Marketing Tools We Recommend
AI is revolutionizing the way businesses produce, create, and operate.
Here are some of our favorite AI-powered tools right now and how they help us (note: some of these are affiliate links):
Content at Scale
The bones of this very blog (and all our blogs) come from Content at Scale, which is one of the very best blog writing A.I. tools we’ve found.
You can see exactly how we use it in this workshop – including how we make sure our voice and opinions show up in these blogs in a big way!
Capsho is a must-have tool if audio is a part of your business at all. Whether in the form of call recordings, long-form video for YouTube, or podcasts, CapSho is a must.
This A.I. tool can take audio files and turn them into emails, show notes, blog posts, social media copy for lots of social media platforms, and pull notable quotes for you.
And the output is a really, really, great foundation for us when we turn our Rebellion group calls into content. It can handle long-form, complex audio files quite easily.
Lately.ai is a new tool we found as a result of the Women Who A.I. Summit we were on.
And it’s freaking genius! Developed by a former radio DJ, it’s trained to take long-form content and intelligently slice and dice it for all your social media platforms – including short-form videos, blogs, and social content.
It can also post directly to your social media, and as you edit its output, you train the A.I. to understand your voice more and more each time.
IF video (or long-form) is your primary form of content creation, this tool is so ridiculously helpful and can basically replicate your marketing team.
Chrissie loves this tool to help with ad copy because it provides predictive analytics for how well your copy might convert.
And of course, we love all data-driven tools.
It can help you create and analyze copy for more than just ads, though, including emails, landing pages, and YouTube/blog/sales page titles.
We’ve found it to be a great tool to check our own copywriting skills and push us to write even better copy – with and without the help of the A.I.
This is the one that’s been super hot since it opened up around the winter holidays.
How it works is not as difficult as you might think – it’s basically trained on language (or a Large Language Model), so that it’s able to predict strings of words that go together to make sense – or better yet, sound “real”.
These are some of our favorite tools right now that we’re playing with – but, again, they come after the use case we need.
Right now, we’re having a lot of success with short-form content on TikTok that helps us grow our audience, paired with long-form, authority-building content like this blog.
Together, this has been an extremely powerful strategy for us, and so our tools specifically augment those two needs.
Benefits of Using Artificial Intelligence in Marketing
The benefits of using A.I. go far beyond the tools themselves and step into not just productivity, but potential.
Small businesses and digital marketers can leverage artificial intelligence for productivity, absolutely. But the implications of how it will unleash creativity, and unburden our already overflowing plates, is where the real benefits lie.
Increased Creative Energy
We’ve heard over and over again how A.I. will “kill creativity as we know it…”
That’s absolutely NOT the experience we’ve had!
If you’ve been in marketing for more than 2 minutes, you know how exhausting it can become to be constantly ‘on’. Content marketing… writing copy… coming up with new ideas… email marketing… social media…
It never freaking ends! And when you’re tapped out on that epic headline, subject line, or punchy piece of copy but your brain is tired… you’re pretty much S.O.L. until inspiration strikes again. Which is why staring at a blank page can be so agonizing.
AI changes our creative ceiling into a new creative floor, by giving us endless opportunities for ideas we can put together in our own unique way. In this way, it has freed up the mental space to allow us to focus on deeper, more interesting, and more innovative ideas.
Basically increasing our capacity for creativity.
Shaping How We Communicate:
Marketers who are comfortable leveraging AI are going to win out over those who don’t if for nothing else than they will have the tools to understand customers and communicate with them better. Why? The AI has all the language patterns that your ideal customer is using.
By tapping into and leveraging this in your digital marketing strategy, you have an advantage over even the best-written copy.
Not only that but there are AI tools out there that replicate a feeling of intimacy to a real human, like chatbots. Incorporating AI in this way can effectively replicate you or a team member for times when you’re unavailable (or for asynchronous learning).
This deeper feeling of understanding and our ability to communicate and to understand our potential clients better will shape how we communicate and what kind of communication we value.
Efficiency & Productivity:
It’s no secret that the biggest benefit of AI is definitely increased efficiency and productivity.
But don’t be swayed by AI’s devilishly handsome looks… it can also be a terrible rabbit hole of endless information gathering.
So, here’s what we recommend we do so you don’t end up in an Alice in Wonderland-sized rabbit hole…
Determine the use case first and then find the AI-powered solutions second.
This is the only way to avoid frustration. Trust us.
So look for the time-sucks, bottlenecks, and redundant or repetitive tasks in your business that you would like to automate, then search for a tool that can do that for you.
Overall, using AI in marketing provides businesses with the opportunity to engage potential customers on a deeper level while saving time and resources.
Just know that it can’t do everything…at least not yet. And there still one place where we don’t suggest you lean on AI
Designing an Effective AI Marketing Strategy for Your Business
Remember when we said there’s one thing we do not ever recommend outsourcing to AI: your critical thinking? Well, this includes your digital marketing strategies.
Because, we’ve seen people put whole entire data sets into ChatGPT and ask it what to do based on that data and, let’s just say…don’t do that. It never ends well.
Digital marketers should see AI as a way to augment what we’re already doing, but certainly not replace it.
Leveraging artificial intelligence in your marketing strategy should be about where you can impact marketing efforts, not replace the human element.
This is where it’s so important to think about the use case before you try and figure out the tool. We’ve found that there are generalist AIs and specialist AIs, you should be implementing AI based on which generalist or specialist tool you specifically need to augment the human digital marketers. This may be in tasks like content creation, social media dissemination, or enhanced emails, all the way to chatbots or custom ChatGPT API plug-ins! The possibilities are endless.
Just don’t forget, when you move into AI, there are some ethical considerations you must address, too…
Ethical Considerations for Artificial Intelligence Marketing
AI-powered marketing comes with a whole host of ethical considerations. And this is now your responsibility!
Transparency and accountability are the two key components of using AI ethically.
Be open and transparent about how you’re using AI (especially in a world where consumers will struggle to identify what is AI generated, and what is not).
For instance, about 50% of this blog was AI created. 50% is pure, unfiltered, us.
Then always be sure to read the Terms of Service for any tool in order to understand how and if your Intellectual Property is protected by the tools. Some of them, like ChatGPT, have very murky terms about this – and because of the way this tool learns from input, anything you put into it can be pulled from and fed to someone else. So, if what you want to put in isn’t public facing in your marketing, also, then reconsider!
The ethics of AI overall are constantly evolving and it’s your job to keep up, stay informed, and positively impact the tools in how you use them. Remember, there is no precedent right now for many of these AI ethical debates. The first AI lawsuit is what will most likely set the tone for how we handle AI issues in the future in legal, federal, and global regulations.
Getting Started With Ai and Marketing FAQs
Utilizing machine learning techniques, AI can be incorporated into marketing to evaluate customer journeys and detect patterns in behavior, as well as forecast potential trends. AI-driven automation tools can also help marketers optimize campaigns for maximum efficiency and effectiveness. Additionally, AI-powered chatbots provide personalized customer experiences while providing businesses with valuable insights that help them understand customers better. Finally, AI-driven natural language processing can be used to analyze customer reviews and feedback for further optimization. You can also use different AI tools to get a deeper and better understanding of your customers and their language patterns.
An AI-first approach in marketing is a method of leveraging artificial intelligence (AI) to improve decision-making and optimize marketing strategies. By utilizing advanced analytics, machine learning algorithms, natural language processing, and predictive modeling techniques powered by AI technology, marketers can gain valuable insights into customer behavior that enable them to quickly identify growth opportunities and effectively target their campaigns for maximum efficiency. This allows marketers to quickly identify opportunities for growth and better target their efforts for maximum efficiency. Just don’t outsource your critical thinking to the robots.
Start by identifying the use case and then search for a tool to help you achieve those results. The best thing you can do is adopt a scientist mindset and get comfortable simply experimenting with these tools. The beauty about where we are right now in AI is that no one is more of an expert than anyone else; the playing field is level for anyone who’s willing to jump in and try!
So, there you have it! The A.I. and Marketing odyssey comes to a close, and we hope you’ve gained some valuable insights to help you navigate the ever-evolving landscape of digital marketing. Remember, embracing A.I. is not about replacing you or your expertise; it’s about staying ahead in the game and utilizing cutting-edge technology to enhance your marketing efforts.
As the saying goes, adapt or die. Or, you know, play Snake on an OG cellphone and fade into irrelevance.
Don’t be intimidated by the world of A.I. in marketing. Instead, take a deep breath, jump right in, and make it work for you! Now, go forth and conquer the digital marketing realm with the power of A.I. by your side.