5 Ways Artificial Intelligence Can Positively Impact Your Marketing Strategy

The power to understand customer needs, emotions, and preferences globally is a big boon of this emerging technology. Paradoxically enough, AI’s greatest strength may be in creating a more personal experience for your customer. From visual search to virtual personal shoppers, digital marketing is on the verge of getting a superb makeover.

So let’s discuss how artificial intelligence (and the fruits of its artificial loins) can positively impact your marketing strategy.

1. It helps you know your customers better

Imagine knowing for sure what a customer has in mind when they connect with you or visit your website. Isn’t that at the heart of every marketer’s dream?
Knowing a customer’s needs, desires and expectations in advance enable marketers to plot out resources and personalize high-quality communications. And artificial intelligence is going to make it easy.
Personalization in marketing is obviously nothing new. Many eCommerce stores already use collaborative filtering to provide customers with relevant recommendations. However, with the real-time personalization provided by AI, marketers will gain the ability to deliver different experiences to individual customers visiting their site or reading their emails, based on their previous behavior or demographic data.
One such project is already being tested at USAA, incorporating AI technology built by Saffron, now a division of Intel.
This AI technology analyzes thousands of factors and matches them with individual customers. The broad customer behavioral patterns are aligned with individual members, and as per reports, the technology has thus far helped USAA improve their guess rate from 50% to 88% accuracy. The guesswork mainly involves knowing how future contacts will get in touch, and for what products.
Predictive customer service is also going to be a huge side effect of artificial intelligence for marketers across the globe – a very positive one.
Think about the amount of time you spend analyzing the demographics of each customer and making templates sound personal. If you can know when, why and how each of your customers plans to communicate with you, you’ll have the golden opportunity to plan out your nurturing process on a much more advanced level.

2. It takes search engine algorithms to a new level

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When Google admitted to using RankBrain in 2015, an AI system, to break down search queries, it was big news. RankBrain uses high-end natural language processing to break down large search queries. It also helps improve user context and voice search.
A simple way to explain it is as follows: a customer who has visited a particular food destination posts a review about his or her experience. Now, a customer typically writes a review in language that is ‘real’ and to some extent rhetorical, too. Let’s say they write, ‘This place has the best breakfast mushrooms that don’t cost a fortune’. With RankBrain, this automatically becomes a solution for someone who is searching for a place to ‘eat mushrooms within budget’.  AI will also introduce new visual search capabilities which allow consumers to upload an image to find similar or complementary products. In our increasingly visually marketed world – think Instagram, Snapchat, and Facebook – this is going to be revolutionary. AI platforms which can ‘read’ images for clues will be essential to eCommerce success.

3. It allows related recommendations and suggestions

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Once a user subscribes to your page or website, sending out email newsletters is a key part of a good marketing strategy, and they will probably include product recommendations.
Many companies already use artificial intelligence to suggest or recommend new
offers based on their subscribers’ activities and other demographics. For instance, Netflix uses predictive analytics to suggest shows or movies that might interest you.

As AI technology gets more and more sophisticated, these suggestions or recommendations grow even more closely aligned to your interest domain. It isn’t magic, but it is the power of AI. Companies like Netflix which already use artificial intelligence to gather information from various data sets will find their predictive analytics only get stronger.

New technology can also help creative marketers fine-tune their decision-making.
Used properly, these technologies can surface the insights you need on command to help you make creative and data-backed decisions about what will perform. And all with minimal time or human resources wasted.

4. It amps up cybersecurity

Online shopping is at its peak, and enlisting machines to do the heavy lifting in terms of advanced security simply makes sense.
Safe and secure transactions can no longer be assured just through usernames and passwords. The need for AI in the security domain is extreme.
As most marketers know, e-retailers are highly prone to breaches. There is a dire need for advanced solutions that will instantly alert businesses in the case of frauds, breaches, and unstructured data. Cyber adversaries have long leveraged machines and automation techniques to streamline their operations and the growth of AI will drastically improve e-retailer’s detection and response capabilities.
AI technology is able to identify threats, assess risks and orchestrate remediation, all while marketers catch up on z’s. You can already use NLP to analyze text used in the transactions, categorizing it as structured or unstructured data.
At the end of the day, all your marketing efforts are designed to drive your customers to make a purchase. And if their data isn’t secure, all your efforts will go to waste. It’s time to admit that society has reached a tipping point where the sheer volume of security data can no longer be handled by humans.

5. It helps with content generation

Marketers are often heard chanting, “Content is king!” And indeed it is. Good high-quality content has the power to change the face of your business.
Why else would marketers chain themselves to a computer to carefully curate original, error-free and compelling content?
But what if that content can be automated?
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According to Gartner, a full 20% of business content will be written by machines from 20182. They claim that business content, such as shareholder reports, legal documents, market reports, press releases, articles and white papers, are all prime candidates for automated writing tools. Wordsmith is a platform that helps in generating automated news articles and there are many more like it on the way. The Associated Press now has machines writing full earnings reports.

However, you will still need to have structured data for the content generators to work off and feed reports into the CSV correctly. Automated narratives may turn out a little clunky and imperfect, and additional editing and tweaking may be required by a human content specialist.
Still, if reasonably high-quality content can be generated with the help of AI, it will undeniably help marketers deal with the increase in competition and writing content at scale.

Wrapping up

The impact of AI for marketers (and in general) is definitely worth talking about.
It will facilitate language recognition, analyze inbound emails, and take actions accordingly. It will help marketers better understand the past behaviors of customers and assist in filtering emails based on which leads should be disqualified.
Chatbots are presumed to be the future of user input on mobile. AI in marketing will lead to smarter ads, sentiments, and emotions, search results and customer service.
AI is all set to make its presence felt like a major player, whether you are ready for it or not. It’s got a lot to offer, and machine learning definitely has its perks.
Google implemented machine learning in search, advertisements, and recommendations on YouTube years ago, and it’s high time for marketers across the globe to take steps toward doing the same.
Guest Author: Chandana is a digital marketer at EasySendy Pro – a hybrid email marketing solution provider for B2B and B2C businesses. She is a passionate blogger and an enthusiastic YouTuber. You can follow her on Twitter and YouTube for her educational videos about email marketing.

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3 Website A/B Testing Tools

A/B testing is becoming more and more common as teams realize how important it is for a website’s success.

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]The Web is a huge, competitive marketplace with very few (if any) untapped markets, meaning that being successful by offering something unique is rare. Much more common is that you’re competing for the business of your customers with several other websites, so attempting to convert every visitor into a customer or upselling/cross-selling your services better could make all the difference to your bottom line.

Due to this, the market for A/B testing tools and CRO (conversion rate optimization) tools is growing exponentially. But choosing one can be quite a time-consuming challenge, so in this article, I’ll compare the best A/B testing tools to help you decide which is most suitable for you or your team.

A/B testing is about experimenting with visual and content changes to see which results in more conversions.A/B testing often follows usability testing as a means of testing a solution to a flaw in the user experience identified using metrics like bounce rate in an analytics tool like Google Analytics, and thanks to the depth and quality of A/B testing tools available now, A/B testing is accessible to designers as well as marketers and developers.

 

1. Optimizely

Optimizely is one of the leading — if not the leading — A/B testing and CRO tools on the market today. It offers analytics tools to suit users of all levels and a multitude of A/B testing tools. (You could think of it as the Google Analytics of A/B testing, with a much simpler user interface.)

Consider this scenario: You have an eCommerce store built with Magento. You’re aware that in certain cases it may benefit stores to add a one-step checkout solution instead of the standard multi-page checkout, but you’re not sure if your store fits that use case. You need to test both options and compare the results with/without the one-step checkout experience. You know that running two versions of the checkout simultaneously requires changes to the code, which is a complex matter.

With Optimizely, you can send a certain amount of your users to a totally separate checkout experience to collect conversion data. If the experiment yields negative results, you delete the experiment and the original checkout web page still exists and works fine. No harm was done.

With their Web Experimentation tool, which offers an easy-to-use visual editor to create A/B tests without requiring a developer (optional), the ability to target specific user types and segments, and create experiments on any device, Optimizely has all your bases covered.

Although you can run A/B tests without a developer, your variations can be more targeted (for example, your variations can go beyond color, layout and content changes) if you have the skills and/or resources to develop custom experiments with code. By integrating your A/B tests into your code, you can serve different logic and test major changes before pushing them live.

Also, if your product extends beyond the web, Optimizely works with iOS, tvOS and Android apps. Optimizely’s Full Stack integrations make it possible to integrate A/B tests into virtually any codebase, including Python, Java, Ruby, Node, PHP, C#, Swift, and Android.

2. Google Optimize

Google Optimize is a free, easy-to-use tool that integrates directly with your Google Analytics Events and Goals to make A/B testing quick and easy! It’s ideal for traditional A/B testing, focusing on comparing different CTA (call to action) elements, colors, and content.

Developers aren’t required for implementing Google Optimize since it’s as simple as adding a line of JavaScript to your website and then customizing your layout with the visual editor. With this, you can change the content, layout, colors, classes, and HTML of any element within your page.

It’s not as sophisticated as Optimizely, since it doesn’t allow you to create custom experiments with code/developers, but it’s free. It’s great for those starting out with A/B testing. For each Google Optimize experiment, you’ll need to specify which Google Analytics Goals or Events will be the baseline for your A/B tests. For example, if you were A/B testing a product page, you could use an “Add To Basket” event that you’ve defined in Google Analytics to evaluate which of your variations converts the best. The Google Analytics report then gives you a clear indication of which variation converts best. It’s ideal for those on a low budget!

Just don’t get carried away, as Google famously once did, by testing 40 different shades of blue to see which converted best!

3. Unbounce

Unbounce focuses on landing pages and convertible tools. Convertible tools use triggers, scenario-based overlays and sticky bars to A/B test offers and messages to learn when, where and why your visitors convert. An example? If a user tries to leave your site, they’re shown a discount code in a modal or a sticky header, and a test will determine which is more effective.

Landing pages can be an amazing way to validate your ideas, build excitement around a new product, and/or re-engage dormant customers. The problem with them is that they can result in false positives. If you get very few conversions you may feel like your idea is invalidated or demand for the new product doesn’t exist, when in reality users were just unimpressed and/or unconvinced by the landing. Unbounce helps you to determine what your landing is missing.

While you can choose from over 100 responsive templates designed for many markets, goals, and scenarios, and then customize it with your own content using their drag and drop UI, you can also integrate Unbounce with your own design, making a terrific solution for designers and marketers who need to collaborate. Unbounce also works with Zapier and Mailchimp, so data can be transferred across the other apps and tools that marketers use.

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Author: Jamie Murphy
Source: sitepoint.com

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