There was a time when incorporating AI into your marketing strategy felt optional.
As recently as the early 2010s, AI was largely the domain of researchers and technology futurists. Some marketers were experimenting with AI, but most were waiting until the use cases became too obvious to ignore.
This was the era of IBM’s Watson beating human competitors on Jeopardy—there was serious promise, but AI still felt like far-off science fiction to most.
Today, AI is indispensable in marketing. (Heck, you can even ask AI to create an AI marketing strategy for you).
A 2018 report by McKinsey found that AI adds more value to marketing and sales than any other business function. You can use AI to create content faster, generate marketing insights, or personalize your campaigns. And that’s just the start.
But the ubiquity of AI in marketing can make it hard to design an effective strategy. With so many options for incorporating AI, where do you even begin?
How to Approach Your AI Marketing Strategy
You have two main routes to consider when designing an AI marketing strategy.
Each has its place depending on your situation:
- The Piecemeal Approach: Take a closer look at the array of AI marketing tools available today. Over time, add or replace tools in your marketing toolbox when you feel they’ll make a most significant impact. This approach allows you to test the waters slowly. By adding AI into your process bit by bit, you’ll understand the practical implications before diving in headfirst.
- The Holistic Approach: Reassess your marketing efforts from the ground up. Redesign your processes with AI at the forefront. You don’t have to enact every change at the same time (and you probably shouldn’t). But looking at the big picture should give you a bird’s eye view of where your biggest AI marketing opportunities are.
Let’s explore each.
The Piecemeal AI Strategy Approach
This is where most people should start—especially if you’re new to the world of AI marketing. Before building out a full strategy, get first-hand experience with one or two AI tools.
Gradually add or replace existing tools where you think they’ll be most beneficial. This allows you to develop a needs-driven strategy that can evolve as fast as AI technology does.
While the piecemeal approach may not be a holistic strategy, it’s an ideal starting point. This is especially true if you’re feeling overwhelmed at the prospect of designing a larger strategy.
For instance, you might start by using AI-powered copywriting tools like Jasper. Image-generation tools like Midjourney can add a unique angle to your social media content. As you see the benefits, experiment with more tools and grow your AI marketing stack over time.
Designing a Holistic AI Marketing Strategy
Marketers often default to designing a comprehensive strategy—or at least, that’s what their bosses want.
This approach does come with a risk, though:
AI technology is changing so fast that any 1-3 year plans you make might be outdated when it’s time to put them into place.
It’s important to stay nimble and update your plan as new technology is released.
Think big, but adapt.
- Understand How AI Supports Your Marketing Goals: Don’t try to put AI into place across your organization “just because.” Focus on the marketing outcomes that move the needle most for you. Then, design a strategy that focuses on the technologies that get you closer to that outcome.
- Pick the Right AI Tools: There are thousands of AI tools out there. Reduce the complexity of choosing the right tools by narrowing your focus. For example, if Facebook Ads are your key marketing avenue, focus first on AI tools for ad creative and ad optimization. If you can find tools that integrate easily into your existing marketing stack, all the better.
- Use AI-Powered Analytics: Whatever other AI tools you may use, make sure to complement them with AI analytics. Predictive AI tools can help you understand the impact of changes you might make. AI-powered analytics can glean crucial insights from the data generated by your website and customers.
Choosing AI Tools That Make Sense For Your Strategy
Whether you choose a holistic approach or a piecemeal approach, start by evaluating the current range of AI capabilities.
Remember—this technology changes fast, and not all of it will be applicable to your use cases.
As you’re designing your AI marketing strategy, here’s what to consider incorporating.
1. Collaborate with AI Whenever Brainstorming
In the past, the brainstorming phase of marketing campaigns relied on human ingenuity. Today, artificial intelligence can streamline the grunt work of idea generation. This allows you to focus on refining and tailoring these concepts.
Lean on AI as much as possible during this phase. It’s one of the easiest to experiment with—affordable AI tools like ChatGPT make it low-risk to test.
For example, you can simply ask the AI, “Give me ten ideas for Facebook ad campaigns to launch a new consumer product.” The AI will then give you creative raw materials that you can shape into a compelling, unique marketing strategy.
2. Personalize Each Step Of Your Customer Experience
By analyzing customer data, AI can craft tailored experiences for each visitor. That means personalized product recommendations and hyper-relevant emails are easier than ever before.
One standout example of AI-driven personalization is Kindly.ai. This cutting-edge tool gently nudges website users toward conversion by displaying subtle, well-timed popups containing personalized recommendations. The results speak for themselves: these AI-powered nudges have been shown to increase conversion rates by up to 12% and boost average order value by an impressive 25%.
You can also use AI to better understand your customers through customer persona generation. By harnessing AI-powered tools like Delve.ai, marketers can streamline the persona creation process by automatically generating customer personas using data from Google Analytics.
3. Speed Up Content Creation
Creating content can be a daunting and time-consuming task. But today, AI can help streamline the content creation process. With AI-powered content generation tools, you can create blog posts, social media updates, and even product descriptions with ease. This not only saves you precious time but also ensures that your content is high-quality and specifically tailored to your target audience.
As the AI landscape expands, there are now dozens of AI writing tools available, making content creation an exciting new frontier for AI technology. The real challenge for marketers, though, is figuring out the best way to harness this potential.
As much as we might wish there was a magical AI button that churns out flawless, ready-to-publish articles, that’s still not the best approach to engage your audience. However, relying solely on AI for content marketing isn’t the best approach. Although AI can produce confident answers and tackle any topic, unedited AI often results in repetitive writing, factual errors, and a lack of original ideas.
So, what’s the optimal way to use AI for content creation? Start small and incrementally integrate AI into your workflow. Use it to generate headlines, outlines, and even help finish sentences when writer’s block strikes. As you gain more experience, you’ll discover how to use AI tools to speed up your content production without sacrificing your unique voice or rehashing old ideas.
4. Innovate With Visual and Audio Content
Visual and audio content in marketing is undergoing a significant transformation. Traditional stock photos and videos may soon become obsolete—generative AI tools like Midjourney and Adobe Firefly are capable of producing customized and unique visuals based on descriptions.
AI empowers marketers to generate never-before-seen images in a matter of seconds by using simple prompts. This rapid content creation not only saves time but also enables marketers to produce highly relevant visuals that resonate with their target audience.
The benefits of AI extend beyond static imagery. AI-powered tools enable marketers to remove video backgrounds in real-time, drastically reducing the time spent on editing. Moreover, cutting-edge techniques such as inpainting allow for the restoration of missing image elements, while upscaling technology can transform low-resolution visuals into stunning high-resolution masterpieces.
Generative AI is a boon for marketers, as it unlocks their creative potential and accelerates the design process. No longer do they need to rely on lengthy turnaround times for designers to produce artwork. Instead, marketers can now test and iterate new designs almost instantly. For applications like ad creatives, this translates into substantial productivity gains and more impactful campaigns.
5. Plan More Accurately With Predictive analytics
Predictive analytics combines data and machine learning to make guesses about the future.
AI-driven predictive analytics tools have taken this concept a step further. Marketers can forecast customer behavior, such as the likelihood of making a purchase or churning. This means businesses can be proactive about retaining customers and boosting sales.
Advanced predictive analytics solutions, like Pecan.ai, unlock hyper-specific data by predicting the actions of individual users. By using propensity modeling, these tools classify visitors based on their likelihood to convert, using attributes such as behavior, gender, income, employment status, and location.
This level of granularity especially helps with upselling and cross-selling campaigns. It helps marketers target customers with tailored offerings that resonate with their unique needs and preferences.
6. Take Chatbots to the Next Level with Next-Gen Conversational AI
Most people have already experienced interacting with AI-powered chatbots. Early versions of these have been around for years, and typically handle basic sales and support queries. If your business is customer-facing, it makes sense to explore how conversational AI can reduce the burden on your customer support team.
But the potential of conversational AI extends far beyond cost reduction in customer support. It now plays a proactive role in lead generation and customer retention. Sales bots shepherd leads at their early stages until they’re warmed up enough to speak to a sales representative.
And as demonstrated by tools like ChatGPT, answering customer inquiries only touches the surface of what chatbots can do. Large language models can be trained on custom datasets, and chatbots can be tweaked to your specific marketing needs. This is already possible with tools like retune.so.
7. Let AI Handle Your Data Insights and Optimization
One of AI’s sweet spots is crunching vast sums of data and extracting insights.
AI tools are opening up a world of marketing insights we could only dream of before. It’s like having a personal data detective that can uncover hidden gems in your marketing analytics.
Google Analytics, for example, now comes with a built-in AI-powered insights tool that digs deep into website performance trends. So, instead of drowning in a sea of data, you get fantastic insights to help you understand what’s really going on with your marketing campaigns.
For a more holistic approach, digital experience intelligence platforms like Trymata capture everything that’s happening across your digital experience. Then, they magically turn that mountain of data into actionable information.
Unleashing the Power of AI In Your Marketing Strategy
AI has become an indispensable component of contemporary marketing.
From brainstorming campaign ideas and generating content to personalization and predictive analytics, the integration of AI into marketing strategies has transformed the way businesses reach and engage with their audiences.
Whether you opt for the piecemeal approach or decide to design a holistic AI marketing strategy, the key is to remain adaptive and open to the potential that AI offers. By embracing AI-powered tools and technologies, you can unlock new opportunities for growth, streamline your marketing processes, and ultimately, drive better results for your business.
Remember that AI isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution, and it’s crucial to align your marketing goals and objectives with the right AI tools.
As you become more comfortable with AI technology and its capabilities, continue to refine and expand your AI-driven marketing strategy.
This iterative approach will help ensure that your marketing efforts remain cutting-edge and effective.
If you’re not sure where to start, just start by picking a tool that looks useful. Then, experiment. With a well-crafted, AI-powered marketing strategy, you’ll be on your way to achieving greater efficiency, more targeted campaigns, and a deeper connection with your audience.
Get more AI marketing strategies at Bionic Marketing.