First things first: I’m making an honest attempt here to be hyperbole-free. There is enough hysteria over AI (artificial intelligence) to keep Hollywood busy for decades. AI is not trying to kill us all – yet.
Second, I’m going to speak specifically on AI in Marketing. I’ll leave the Minority Report/Terminator dystopian future to others who know far more about the rest of the AI world than I do.
Where are we now?
As for branding, marketing, and advertising, we’re living in interesting times. I used an analogy in a recent interview that hopefully helps you understand what’s happening. If you don’t want to watch it, the analogy is this.
Many years ago, when carpenters framed up the structure of a home, they used hammers. They still do in many parts of construction. But contractors now use nail guns to get the job of “framing” done more efficiently. Nail guns don’t replace humans. The complex decisions necessary to follow a set of plans, even in a simple home, can’t yet be made by a machine.
In marketing, AI fills a similar role as the nail gun. It’s a tool. It takes tedious, repetitive tasks and gives us a strategic advantage. It saves us time and gives us more time to concentrate on what only humans can do.
The Marketer-to-Machine Scale
Last summer, I attended MAICON, the Marketing AI Institute’s annual conference. Before the conference, I was introduced to the founder, Paul Roetzer. Paul founded and built a very successful marketing agency. When he trained his eyes on the future, he saw that AI would have a massive impact on marketing in the future. He sold his agency and founded the Marketing AI Institute.
When I attended MAICON in July 2022, Paul said (as he had in previous proclamations), “…in 3-5 years, AI will dramatically change the marketing world.” Dall-e 2 (an OpenAI product) was publicly available at the time.
Fast forward four months to November 2022, ChatGPT is released, and the 3-5 year window suddenly slammed shut. And even though OpenAI’s ChatGPT is transformational, AI has yet to take over the world. And if you look at the Marketing AI Institute’s “Marketer-to-Machine” scale, AI still has a long way to go.
For example, I intended to write most of this blog post using AI. The result was so pathetically generic that I used approximately 1% of what ChatGPT gave me. The things I wanted to communicate were too specific, and AI is unable to read my mind as of this writing.
That said, Grammarly – an AI-powered writing tool – discovered 23 recommendations to improve this blog post. You can thank Grammarly for the clarity if you made it this far.
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