The Advantages and Disadvantages of AI in Marketing

One of today’s ubiquitous topics is artificial intelligence (AI). It’s such a pervasive topic that even my doctor and I talk about it.

In marketing, AI provides many benefits. Among the 200+ marketers we surveyed, the ability to analyze data quickly is the top benefit they identified.

It is a double-edged sword, though, as marketers face AI-related concerns. This blog post discusses the advantages and disadvantages of AI in marketing, so you can better strategize how to integrate it into your marketing strategy.

The table below provides a quick overview of the advantages and disadvantages of using AI in marketing:

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Now, let’s dive into the pros and cons of AI in marketing:

3 advantages of AI in marketing

50% of the marketers we surveyed

are already using AI for their marketing strategies

That’s because AI has many use cases in marketing — from customer data analysis and automation to personalization. Let’s look at the advantages of AI that these marketers are enjoying:

  1. Improved efficiency
  2. Fast and accurate customer data processing
  3. Optimized marketing campaigns

Let’s dive in:

1. Improved efficiency

You can automate repetitive tasks with AI to improve your marketing team’s efficiency.

You can train your AI system to automate tasks such as the following:

  • Lead scoring: If your business gets hundreds of new leads per day, prioritizing the leads who are close to converting is important. Automate your lead scoring with AI so your sales reps don’t have to guess which lead they must reach out to first.
  • Lead routing: Improve your speed to lead by automatically qualifying, sorting, and delegating leads among your sales reps. AI can improve your lead routing process using machine learning to analyze lead and sales performance data. As a result, you can accurately predict which leads are qualified and which among your sales rep can most likely nurture a relationship with a lead and close the deal.
  • Email send-out: You can use AI to create triggered emails and email drip campaigns to help you nurture your leads and improve your conversion rates. AI can also help you analyze your email engagement to improve your email’s open rate and click-through rate (CTR).
  • Answering site visitors’ inquiries with a chatbot: You can train AI chatbots to assist site visitors looking for information on your website. Some AI chatbots can also gather leads on your site and integrate with your customer relationship management (CRM) software.

2. Fast and accurate customer data processing

Nearly 53% of the marketers we surveyed

use AI for analysis

How long do you think it will take you to segment thousands of customers and leads using only a spreadsheet? How about processing and analyzing the results of all your marketing campaigns?

Machine learning algorithms can analyze vast amounts of customer and lead data faster and more accurately. If you need help with number crunching for your marketing campaigns, AI can also draw insights and prepare charts and graphs to make it easy to spot trends and patterns.

As such, AI helps marketers make data-backed strategies for the following tasks:

  • Customer segmentation: Discover your customers’ purchasing habits or other behaviors using AI so that you can segment them accordingly. Use AI to process your lead and customer data, so you can look at patterns and decide the best way to segment them.
  • Personalization: Did you know that 88% of marketers using AI say it has helped them personalize the customer journey across different channels? With the help of AI to analyze your customer’s interactions with your business, you can provide personalized experiences to your audience based on the products they’re interested in or how long they’ve been your customer.
  • Improved ad targeting: AI can analyze large amounts of data, like your ad campaigns’ historical performance. Which customer segments clicked on and converted through an ad? What are the ad messages that resonate with each segment? AI can help you answer these questions to help you improve your ad targeting and CTRs.

3. Optimized marketing campaigns

By evaluating your marketing strategies’ results, AI can identify the strategies and channels that work best for your audience.

It can also give you insights into the effective marketing messages that resonate with your customer segments. That said, AI helps you measure your campaigns’ performance so you can optimize them and improve your return on investment (ROI).

Our IBM Watson-powered growth platform, MarketingCloudFX, can track your ROI from online and offline sources, enabling you to understand which efforts contribute to your bottom-line growth. In addition, you can make data-driven decisions with MarketingCloudFX because you know where to invest your marketing spend.

3 disadvantages of AI in marketing

Almost 50% of the marketers we surveyed

are concerned about data privacy and ethics surrounding AI

When discussing the challenges of AI in marketing, it’s inevitable to bring up the topic of AI ethics. In this section, let’s go through the other disadvantages of the technology in marketing:

  1. Data privacy
  2. Concerns of biases and inaccurate content
  3. Lack of creativity

Let’s discuss each one:

1. Data privacy

For AI to draw insights from your campaigns, it must collect and analyze large amounts of lead and customer data, thus raising data privacy and security concerns.

Because transparency fosters trust among your customers, it’s essential to disclose to your customers how you collect, process, and protect their data. Once you’ve communicated this, let them decide whether they want to continue sharing their data with you or not.

Take extra measures to safeguard the customer data you’ve collected to avoid data breaches.

2. Concerns of biases and inaccurate content

AI’s output is only as good as the data it’s trained on. If you train it with data of disproportionate representation, AI may produce inaccurate or biased predictions. It can also lead to unfairly targeted ads.

Pro tip: Implement algorithmic decision-making only in the right places and with the right data. Regularly audit your AI system and data to avoid bias.

3. Lack of creativity

Today’s AI technologies are narrow AI, a type of AI designed to perform specific tasks. They can effectively analyze data and automate tasks.

However, these AI systems still can’t think and learn independently. They also don’t have feelings. As a result, they lack intuition and creative thinking.

For example, let’s say you’re a realtor. AI can quickly identify the best-selling vicinities and give you data on how long it takes you to close a deal on average.

However, AI can’t pinpoint why a particular vicinity isn’t selling like hotcakes if you don’t collect enough feedback from your prospects and customers.

Conversely, humans may have clues based on their interactions with their prospects and common sense. Perhaps most of your prospects are looking for homes near their offices or children’s schools. That said, other neighborhoods are more accessible than a particular vicinity.

We’re masters of our craft.

WebFX is a marketing and design industry leader.

Overcome the challenges of AI in marketing with WebFX

AI provides many benefits for marketers and businesses. It’s not without faults and shortcomings, though.

If you want to overcome the challenges of AI, consider teaming up with WebFX. We’re a full-service digital marketing agency with 25+ years of experience, so we understand the advantages and disadvantages of using AI in marketing. That said, our team knows how to leverage AI to help our clients grow their businesses.

Our proprietary marketing platform, MarketingCloudFX, is an IBM Watson AI-powered software that has increased our customers ROI by 20%!

By teaming up with us, you also work with our in-house team of 500+ digital marketing experts, pumped and ready to help customers like you. We take time to learn more about your business, industry, and goals, so we can effectively craft marketing strategies that will drive bottom-line growth.

Let’s collaborate! Contact us online or call us at 888-601-5359 to speak with a strategist about our digital marketing services and AI services.

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