How Artificial Intelligence Will Affect Marketing in 2018

Imagine a world where you go to work, and all of the little things are taken care of for you. A world where you can spend 90% of your time focusing on higher-level, more strategic tasks, while someone else does all of the rest for you—and does it faster.

Imagine knowing everything you need to know about all your leads, and being able to seamlessly create highly personalized, relevant experiences for each and every one of them.

Welcome to the future of marketing, thanks to artificial intelligence. The future will bring all of that—and more.

Intrigued? Read on to find out how AI is going to affect marketing in the year to come—and how you can use it to improve your marketing strategy.

1. Highly Targeted Marketing

Thanks to machine learning (a type of AI in which algorithms are implemented that help computers to become smarter), marketing platforms are becoming more and more intelligent, allowing for greater personalization and highly targeted marketing.

For example, Boomtrain claims to show marketers “precisely who to target, what to say and when to reach to, so you can achieve the outcomes that matter to your business.”

Blueshift is another company that now has an updated platform in which “instead of offering personalization techniques in bits and pieces—channels like push notifications on consumers’ mobile phones, email messaging, and content recommendations on social media and websites—machines are able to build upon learned data about an individual. This means not only can an interaction or campaign be personalized, but the actual customer journey can be tailored to the individual.”

Based on the behavior and actions of your leads, software programs like Boomtrain and Blueshift can therefore create highly personalized buyer’s journeys, paving the way for more targeted—and effective—lead nurturing.

2. Greater Use of Chatbots

Brands are using chatbots more and more as a way to collect and analyze customer data and engage with customers. Domino’s, for instance, has a Facebook Messenger chatbot that allows customers to order from its full menu.

The great thing about chatbots is that, like humans, they can build upon previous conversations to become smarter and smarter. Let’s say a customer tells your chatbot that they don’t like clothes with stripes. Your chatbot can store that information, remember it and create a more relevant, personalized experience for your customer moving forward, like suggesting clothes without stripes.

Part of the beauty of chatbots is that they allow for 24/7 customer service. Just be sure that your customers know they are speaking to a bot (probably best to state this upfront). And make sure that you have someone on-call (at least during your normal business hours) in case the customer’s questions or concerns can’t be answered via the bot.

3. A Change in SEO

The rise of AI is going to change the way that marketers do SEO.

The introduction of Google’s machine-learning technology, RankBrain, has already seen the start of those changes. For those of you who aren’t aware, RankBrain is an AI system that helps Google to sort through its search results. With RankBrain, Google uses a totally different blend of algorithms for every search result. For example, in certain search results, the meta title might be the most important thing, while in other search results, something else, like tags, might be the most important.

RankBrain will also categorize websites and compare them to one another to determine their rankings. So if a site falls under many different categories, then Google might end up marking that site as spam.

Finally, RankBrain will compare backlinks across different sites to determine which sites are legitimate. So if a site has backlinks linking to a bunch of random websites that don’t match the backlinks used by its competitors, that site could be flagged.

So what does all of this mean for marketers?

As TechCrunch mentions, it’s important to analyze each search result separately to determine what SEO factor Google is promoting in importance. There is no longer a one-size-fits-all approach to SEO.

Also, the more niche your site, the better. Make sure that your site is properly categorized and fits into a particular niche.

Lastly (but certainly not least), check out the competition, and be sure that your website is similar in structure to the top websites in your niche.

In Sum

German civil engineer, Konrad Zuse, created the first programmable computer in 1941. And English engineer, Tim Berners-Lee, invented the World Wide Web in 1989.

You might be wondering, what took so long? After all, modern humans have been around for about 200,000 years. And if it took so long to get there, how have we possibly advanced so much since then?

The Law of Accelerating Returns provides an explanation to that. This law states that technology accelerates exponentially. In other words, it took a long time for us to become as high-tech as we are today. But now, technology is going to continue to progress at an almost unimaginable speed—and at a much faster rate than we anticipate.

While you may only have limited artificial intelligence right now to help with your marketing needs, before long, AI could be running all of your marketing campaigns from start to finish.

So, want my advice? Now that you know all about the three main ways that AI is going to influence marketing in 2018, start to make your marketing a bit more intelligent. The end result will be more automation (and less time and energy from your end), more highly qualified leads, and an increase in revenue.

Who can say no to that?