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Simona Ghițuran, IAA Young Professionals Member, Romania. Marketing

Artificial Intelligence in MarComm

The technological evolution of recent years marks all existing industries. Today we read articles about standardizing work processes, about replacing jobs with intelligent robots, about people who will have to move to other fields of activity that cannot be replaced by machines.

The artificial intelligence component of a software product makes it able to learn new processes and data in a progressive way. But we cannot speak of truly intelligent systems, but of pseudo-AI, divided into two branches: machine learning and deep learning.

Machine learning deals with the learning ability of software systems. They use algorithms that identify the input patterns that can be used to make business decisions or predictions. Instead, deep learning offers machines the ability to think, learn and imitate people. This branch uses a complex architecture in which the neural networks of the human brain are replicated.

How does this advanced marketing technology help? Simple - making a significant contribution to customizing your shopping experience. By 2020, 20% of companies will have employees to monitor and guide neural networks. AI helps to process a huge amount of data and deliver fast and efficient solutions.

According to a study by Gartner, 59% of organizations still collect information on how to build their AI strategy, while others already run pilot projects or adopt AI solutions.

These smart solutions began appearing in the market and help companies to connect easier with consumers to develop marketing strategies and quickly predict customer needs. Below we listed 3 trends in 2018, which will continue in 2019, found in the GPeC study "Digital Marketing Trends 2018".

CHATBOT

Consumers are adapting increasingly to new technologies, and smartphones are becoming smarter precisely because of the continued presence of mobile applications in our lives. Thus, mobile messaging has begun to be used frequently, giving users an alternative to SMS messaging.

In 2016, over 1.58 billion smartphone users have accessed messaging applications to communicate, and by 2021 this figure is expected to grow to 2.48 billion users.

Chatbots can be used in marketing to get in touch with customers and collect their email addresses for subscribing to the newsletter, for example. According to Expertsender, 29% of consumers prefer to use messaging applications to get in touch with retailers 24/7 and 63% consider writing a chatbot to get in touch with a brand. A chatbot can significantly improve communication with customers, converting them into subscribers to communication channels.

Brands have already begun to use this way of communication. Starbucks is such an example with My Barista. Customers can order their coffee before they reach the café, and the drink is ready when the customer arrives.

WEARABLES

Wearables or portable smart devices already have a massive audience. By the end of 2018, these devices are expected to reach $ 6.1 billion in the US alone, and by 2019 growth is estimated at 64% globally.

Until recently, the most known gadgets were smartwatches or fitness tracking bracelets. Consumers will not give them up and will look for those wearables that aesthetically integrate their style, preferring those gadgets with a minimalist, discreet design. Manufacturers use technology to create discrete devices that are basically the extension of the human body. Devices like Fitbit, Alexa, Google Home or Apple Watch will become more and more present in our lives. Each sense will find an extension, a device that will help us.

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More about portable devices market and their evolution you will find here.

AI ASSISTED PERSONALIZATION

AI's applicability is numerous and can be a real benefit in improving consumer experience. The deep learning software can customize the buyer's experience by identifying consumer habits, recording them and making predictive analytics in real time. Spotify or Youtube already use this technology when recommending the following songs or videos.

AI becomes the consumer's personal assistant, helping him to select hyper-personalized products. Retail, especially in the health & beauty area, will be dominated by the diagnosis of specific needs and product recommendations. Consumers will feel more and more comfortable sharing their personal data in exchange for knowledge and convenience. This will influence marketing at a wider level as customers will be willing to provide intimate details in exchange for a hyper-personalized experience.

Mona is an app that assists consumers in shopping. The application uses AI, Big Data and specialist’s expertise to provide shopping experiences that are simplified and enjoyable. Mona learns about the user's lifestyle, about his favorite brands and the budget he has allocated so it can provide more relevant suggestions.

These are just a few examples of the power of AI. It remains to be seen how quickly consumers will assimilate it and how it will be integrated in brand’s communication strategy.

The article was written by Simona Ghițuran, member of IAA Young Professionals Romania.

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