Artificial intelligence (AI) has become increasingly important in improving marketing effectiveness in today’s digital world. From real-time customer engagement to interactions on websites, data is generated from virtually every aspect of a business; and to harness this power, we require the computational capabilities of AI and machine learning.
AI is one of the most effective technologies for anticipating likely future behavior. According to Forrester, brands are flocking to AI-powered audience solutions, fueling 20% of media and advertising category growth in 2022. With AI and machine learning, marketers can gain insights in real time and at scale, allowing them to understand their audience better, what they need, and where they’re looking for it. This empowers them to create better online experiences, improve business performance, and build brand trust through true relevance. If a marketer or advertiser is not using AI-driven solutions to enhance their campaigns, they are missing out on insights, new audiences, and productivity gains. Companies embracing AI and machine learning now will gain a long-term competitive advantage.
Here are five ways AI is revolutionizing digital marketing.
- Real-time predictive modeling and trend prediction
Understanding trends is a huge challenge for most companies. By using AI and machine learning to create real-time models, marketers have a better view of what may happen next. At the very core of the Quantcast Platform is a unique combination of real-time, first-party data, and Ara®, our patented AI and machine learning engine. Ara is able to react to the most recent events across the internet and capture ever-changing consumer behavior, understand consumer interest, and infer consumer intent.
To achieve that kind of intelligence and sophistication, Ara uses advanced machine learning algorithms to build custom predictive models for each campaign. In addition to these campaign models, Ara also builds media models for viewability and brand safety as well as general models, such as a TopicMap of the open internet. All this modeling is done using advanced machine learning techniques such as neural networks and, in some cases, deep learning (topic modeling).
- Personalized customer experience
Brands must quickly evolve to capture the emerging digital consumer, moving from a traditional customer model to one focused on the online experience. To reach this next generation of customers with personalized experiences, brands can tap into the power of automation, machine learning and AI, and segmentation to increase brand awareness, change perception, improve web traffic, and grow sales.
For example, BDG (formerly known as Bustle Digital Group), one of the fastest-growing global publishers in modern media, worked with Quantcast to gain audience insights about how its content is resonating and being engaged with, by which audiences, across all of its sites. The tools that Quantcast provides allowed BDG’s editors and writers to think differently about future content that they would produce, based on how audiences respond to them. When BDG focuses on what their audience wants, the publisher sees rates of engagement that are three to four times higher than when it does not. As a result, BDG has achieved the largest reach and engagement of any Millennial and Gen Z-focused publisher.
- Advanced audience analytics
AI/ML can detect patterns in vast amounts of data, helping marketers make better sense of both the data and their potential customers. The Quantcast Ara® TopicMap enables insight into live consumer behavior, interest, and intent. Ara operates on real-time data, which means it handles massive scale (up to 20-40 petabytes of data processed daily) and can operate at a low latency, or minimal delay. This is made possible with a data analytics system built from the ground up–one that turns huge amounts of data into an insights playground. It queries a database of over a trillion online signals in under 100 milliseconds to provide an interactive and instantaneous experience. It is this kind of surrounding infrastructure that helps realize the true benefits of AI.
- Greater ability to discern preferences
Large data sets operated on by machine learning not only help isolate patterns but also discern preferences. An important step is to connect your marketing to the consumer and individual, and the key is consent. When asked, most consumers actually prefer more personalized experiences. To do this well, consumers need to be part of the conversation, providing us with consent to use their data for specified purposes so we can deliver them more relevant products that align with their preferences.
- Pattern recognition
Pattern recognition provides the groundwork for AI to be used effectively in marketing. By analyzing data around demographics, web browsing behaviors, and past purchases, marketers can detect common attributes and understand segments of consumers. These shared attributes can be amplified by identifying customers that display similar behaviors.
For example, a major retail coffee brand weathered the pandemic through its strategic partnership with WITHIN, a performance branding company that helps leading global brands solve for a wide variety of complex challenges. By analyzing the rich, granular audience data available within the Quantcast Platform, WITHIN’s team discovered that the company’s existing coffee subscribers had an unusually high affinity for topics such as “gardening” and “home improvement.” These were topics that the brand hadn’t previously associated with their audience, or leveraged as part of their campaign development and planning. These audience insights from Quantcast proved so valuable that they now provide the foundation for how the brand identifies and targets audiences across other platforms.
To learn more about AI, check out our third podcast episode, “AI, Sounds Like a Takeover…,” which unpacks the role of ethics in AI and technology. You can listen to the full episode here and subscribe to the podcast on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Amazon Music, and Stitcher. Take an even deeper dive by enrolling in the Digital Advertising Course from Quantcast Academy. Module 5 covers how AI works, its integral role in marketing strategy, and the impact of changes to third-party cookies on advertising. To find out more about the benefits that both brands and agencies may expect to gain when using the Quantcast Platform, download the full Forrester TEI study here: The Total Economic Impact™ Of The Quantcast Platform.