intelligence, or AI, has been glorified for many years in science fiction
movies with depictions of human-like robots and omniscient computing devices.
Today, the lofty ambitions of AI have taken a more practical form, and
applications have made their way into marketing, with tools that enable
marketers to use data about a particular customer or contact to predict future
behavior — all in real-time.
which are in practice today. The technology can be used to trigger reactivation
campaigns designed to re-engage subscribers who have been inactive for some
time. In analyzing data of a brand’s subscriber base, AI can detect the absence
of data on a particular customer and start an automated process of distributing
messages and content aimed at bringing that person back into the fold.
case, AI can analyze customers’ past purchase behavior to suggest complementary
products or encourage the reordering of a product that may have expired or been
consumed. For example, if purchase behavior indicates a customer purchased a
water filter that should be replaced every six months, AI can automatically
notify that customer five months after that purchase with a suggestion to order
applications exist, adoption of AI in email marketing has been slow, but
steady, and much remains to be seen in how it will impact the industry’s
future. There are several challenges marketers must overcome to be able to
effectively use AI to drive meaningful results. As a starting point the data
needed to make predictive decisions, such as past purchase behavior, typically
resides in a different system than the email marketing system. Marketers must
develop a complex integration that allows the two systems to communicate and
the data they house to be paired.
to see some of these integrations come to fruition as providers try to make it
easier for marketers to collect and use data. For example, Campaigner’s product
behavior table application integrates with Magento shopping cart to store
purchase data and give retailers easy access to this information for campaign
segmentation. However, there’s plenty of room for growth.
tools like this, many AI applications require data analytics and science skills
that are not currently part of a traditional marketing organization. Marketers
must hire individuals specialized in this field so they can manipulate the data
they have, build effective integrations, and ensure AI is using the data in a
meaningful way. As more data scientists enter the workforce, businesses will
find they’re better equipped to use AI as an integral part of their marketing processes.
Marketers are starting to see beyond the hype
cloud of AI as its potential in marketing is becoming much clearer. For email
marketing, it promises even more personalization for subscribers, which can
ultimately boost interaction, engagement and conversions for businesses. As AI
integrations and applications become more commonplace, their use cases and
benefits will extend from enterprises to small- and medium-sized businesses,
leveling the playing field and helping them compete. It will certainly be an
interesting future ahead as AI gains momentum and starts to reach its full
potential, and marketers should be excited about the emerging opportunities
this will bring.