How to leverage AI – a linguist speaks

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New York-based Leah Pope, CMO at Datorama’s marketing intelligence platform recently ventured Downunder to discuss marketing trends in New Zealand & Australia, data analytics and AI.

Pope has a background in successfully delivering software products and services to market, branding & marketing software products, and creating and implementing effective marketing strategies that maximise profits on a global scale.

She talked to M+AD Daily:

What are the key emerging trends marketers should be talking about right now?
With more streams of data available than ever before for marketers to analyse, we’re witnessing an increase in the responsibilities of the marketer.

Now, marketing professionals are shifting into an amalgamation of roles that combine traditional marketing savviness with data expertise.

“The rise of all-new data sources has also led to a need to leverage automated technologies that can integrate a variety of source systems, run analysis and deliver insights in real-time.

Today, leading marketers across Australia and New Zealand are now looking to artificial intelligence (AI) to allow them to focus on strategy rather than spend time collating and analysing all that data.

In addition to the growing use of AI, we’re also seeing marketers looking to deliver personalisation at scale, using data to provide a more personalised offering than before. According to Boston Consulting Group, marketing personalisation accounts for US$800 billion in revenue for the 15% of companies that do it right.

Clearly, there’s more where that came from provided more organisations adopt and get it right.

“Despite huge levels of interest in AI technologies, implementations remain at low levels — only 4% of CIOs have implemented AI.”

What is the impact of poor and inadequate data to a marketer?
Data is essentially the lifeblood of all modern businesses today. For marketers, however, it is their greatest asset as boardroom pressure places more accountability on marketing professionals to deliver a quantifiable ROI through their various programmes.

So, this works twofold:

1) If marketers do not have 360-degree visibility via adequate data sources into their efforts as well as their customers, it will be difficult to understand the appropriate levers to push/pull to deliver results.

2) If data quality is poor, well, then you’re in real trouble. That’s because a marketer’s insights are only as good as the quality of the data. If you’re leveraging Z-quality data then you effectively Z-quality insights, which is as good as having no insight.

Should data analysis be a part of the marketing skillset?
Yes and no.

Marketers are spending an ever-increasing amount of time analysing and reporting on data being pulled from their website, CRM systems, email campaigns and much, much more. Research indicates that today’s marketers are spending up to one day a week on data analysis. On some level, marketers have to become accustomed to working with data; however, it shouldn’t be an all-day affair.

This is because most marketers have not entered the field to become data scientists. They would rather focus on where their passions truly lie — marketing strategy. It’s time marketers admitted to the C-suite that they don’t want to be diving in data all day and they don’t need to be. By implementing AI-enabled solutions, marketers will free up time to do what will actually help motivate customers and prospects to act.

How can AI enhance the roles of marketers?
According to Gartner, despite huge levels of interest in AI technologies, current implementations remain at quite low levels — only four percent of CIOs having implemented AI.

No doubt this is due to an industrywide lack of understanding about the benefits of AI as the conversation continues to focus on how the arrival of AI will revolutionise operations from a staffing perspective.

The old, inaccurate man-versus-machine narrative still resonates.

In reality it will be a complementary relationship. AI will take on the more time-consuming, number crunching so marketers can work on strategic initiatives. By taking over the heavy lifting, AI enables marketers to focus on the creativity that moves buyers to act.

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