Figuring out the best way to market your products and/or services to your customers can be a tricky business. According to marketing trends for 2017, it doesn’t look like it’s getting any easier for businesses to effectively market their content either.
Given all the additional resources a business has access to, one would think they would have a significant advantage when it comes to marketing, however no matter how much research a company does beforehand, the results of marketing campaigns are always unpredictable.
As companies look to increase their sales growth and their customer base, it’s only natural that they are looking for new and creative ways to increase the effectiveness of their marketing campaigns and bring back the maximum return on each dollar spent. In order to maximize the effectiveness of their marketing campaigns, businesses and individuals need to take a step back and consider new approaches. They must accept the unpredictable nature of consumer psychology and look to either try and understand the nuances that drive that unpredictability, or to haphazardly guess, perhaps even attempt to ‘tell the people what they want’.
Among the new tools available to businesses and individuals looking to understand the behavior of large groups of people, artificial intelligence perhaps offers the most promise as the next revolution in marketing.
Understanding how to best utilize artificial intelligence is the key to success, it’s no good rushing out to try and find some pre-built artificial intelligence that just happens to serve your purposes. A more creative approach is needed if one is to truly harness the power of AI. Remember that true artificial intelligence is capable of learning and improving itself, it is this that elevates it above a simple algorithmic simulation of intelligence.
Embrace Data Analytics
Data analytics is the science of data analysis and it is an incredibly powerful tool for marketers. Previously this has been the domain of statisticians who have used tried and tested methods of interpreting statistics, establishing links between variables, and understanding the relationships between seemingly disparate things. Just as important as finding these links is establishing whether they are causal or not.
Causality is an important principle in mathematics and in marketing; essentially a causal link is one in which one variable directly effects the other. That is to say; if variable A changes, it causes variable B to change in a predictable way. An example of a causal link would be that between pressing down the accelerator in a car and the car moving; the car (variable B) moves as a direct result of changing whether the gas was pressed down (variable A). So how does this apply to marketing?
Well when a marketing campaign works it can cause a huge boost in sales. But this creates a new challenge for the marketer; identifying what it was in the campaign that was effective, and why it led to improved sales. There are also a number of other variables to consider, for example; a lift in sales can occur for a number of reasons. Just because a sales uptick is seen that in itself doesn’t prove the marketing campaign was successful. Establishing which variables caused the increase is key to exploiting the results.
By designing artificial intelligence alongside a statistician, one can, relatively easily with a skilled programmer, construct a program that can not only identify patterns in the data and try to interpret what the links might be, but also to truly learn as it goes along. In other words; the more and larger data sets it is given to greater the ‘knowledge’ it can build. It will learn to identify links that are less obvious and devise its own algorithms for comparing data based on what it finds.
Such programs currently underpin a great deal of our most advanced research. Supercomputers are needed for this kind of artificial intelligence program to be effective but a powerful home computer could run a simplified version. In fact, there are now a number of ways that home computers can either borrow processing power from faster machines using a cloud service, or they can pool their processing power with other users over a peer to peer (P2P) network.
Build Your White Hat Links
When it comes to search engine optimization (SEO) there are two approaches, known as black-hat and white-hat.
Black-hat techniques are designed to circumvent the safeguards that search engine companies have in place to prevent the manipulation of search results. White-hat methods, on the other hand, influence how well a certain webpage performs in the search rankings, but in such a way that it is being promoted for legitimate reasons. Attempting to circumvent the safeguards that each provider puts in place is a serious breach of their terms of service and often results in harsh penalties, up to and including the removal of your domain from search results. The methods that search engines have at their disposal to fight this are impressive so it’s really not worth anyone’s time trying to circumvent them.
White hat links are some of the most effective links there are, but unfortunately, they can take a lot of time and energy to build. There’s a good chance you don’t have that kind of time to dedicate to it, so you may not even give it a try.
Artificial intelligence changes how these white hat links are built as you can now establish connections with site owners and bloggers that will help boost your Google rankings. These links are bought and the work is all done for you.
Make Use of Chatbots
Chatbots are one of the most useful ways artificial intelligence is helping companies. These computer programs are used to mimic conversation so that they can chat with your customers and site visitors in real-time. Some of the biggest companies out there are using chatbots such as Facebook and Uber. These chatbots are able to offer a more personalized customer experience, which can help win them over. They can be used in proactive ways to engage with customers the minute they land on your site.
Test Out More Ad Platforms at Once
If you’re looking to test out a variety of ad platforms and really zero in on your targeting techniques, artificial intelligence can help you. AI programs can do such things as optimize paid ad campaigns, manage them, and analyze them, taking care of all the work for you.
What this means is that you don’t have to hire an outside company to do the work for you, nor do you have to look after it. You’re getting prime information and results quickly and easily.
Make Use of Predictive Intelligence Features
Artificial intelligence can also offer you predictive intelligence which allows you to get a better understanding of your customer. This deeper understanding then allows you to personalize their experience showing them content that will appeal to their interests and specific needs.
These are just a few of the ways artificial intelligence is helping companies with their content marketing strategy. It’s able to take the traditional techniques and amplify them and get more efficient, customized, and effective results. All of this is great for the bottom line.