What is Machine Learning/Artificial Intelligence?

Jul 20, 2018

Machines think faster than we do. Well, some of them do. And even then, it depends on our definitions of “think.” But machines can recognize faster than humans do, and process quicker than humans, and this is where they can be useful in your marketing strategy.

Kashyap Kompella calls machine learning tools, “pattern detectors.” What this means is that you are essentially “training” the algorithms to pick out certain patterns of user behavior that will help you creating content that is interesting to that user.

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is not only for content creation, however. Companies are using AI to create chatbots to have conversations with their users. And if you’ve ever noticed your curated Twitter feed, you are seeing AI at work. AI and Machine Learning are even used to create better speech analytics. Phillip Britt describes uses of AI for speech analysis that are both mind-blowing and just a little scary.

How to Use Machine Learning

Machine Learning is a tool, and like any tool, you have to learn how to use it. In addition to online classes in Machine Learning through Udacity and Coursera, and online lectures from universities like Stanford, there are large companies that you can buy the technology from directly, including Microsoft, Google, and Salesforce.

After getting a handle on how to use AI, according to Luke Tang from Techcode, in an interview with Rob Marvin of PC Magazine, don’t be afraid to bring in experts.

The Ethics of AI

Ethics cannot be an afterthought when a tool as powerful as AI. We’ve seen the recent backlash against Facebook when users learned the extent of their data that is analyzed to create custom content specifically for them.

Ai is built on data, so you your data policy is at the heart of the ethics of AI. Jason Jercinovich, in a recent article on The Ethics of Using AI in Advertising, argues for an ethics of data usage that is driven by consumer choice and awareness. You want to be upfront about how you are using algorithms to create custom content, so it becomes a back-and-forth, give-and-take relationship between the company and the consumer. Otherwise, if your consumer finds out you’ve been doing something without their knowledge, it could be perceived as a fatal betrayal of the relationship. (Read: consumer breaks up with you).

According to Lin Pophal, at least one content strategist, Nancy Shenkar, “predicts that at least 25% of marketing jobs will be eliminated by AI over the next 5 years and says that content creation is no exception.” While this could potentially save you money, Natalia Markova, web content strategists, advises, “keep the human element in the equation”.



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