Introducing AI step by step
Artificial Intelligence (AI) brings a lot of promise for organisations. Marketing departments, in particular, stand to gain significantly from using AI, most notably in easing delivery of consistent brand experiences and exceeding customer expectations.
However, it can be daunting implementing AI so here are a few steps to help you ease into AI adoption:
- Brand audit: Conduct a brand audit to determine how your brand compares to your competitors, what your brand strengths are, how customers interact with your brand and where the touchpoints are. Take a holistic view as if you were a customer, as customers do not look at each department individually but rather view it as an entire brand. It is important to focus on every element of the brand, even those that may not traditionally be thought to be the responsibility of the marketing department such as the content included in letters from the credit department, the call centre script or email signatures.
- Segment critical from none critical functions: Once you’ve completed the audit, you need to determine which functions can be automated. Typically the functions that take a lot of time to do but deliver the least amount of value should be automated, for example, typesetting of business cards, requests for artwork or logos and the typesetting of forms could all be easily automated. According to McKinsey, 45 percent of work activities can be automated by implementing technology solutions.
- Automation software: Find a technology solution that automates the specific functions that you need to automate. While there is often some uncertainty to the functions that can be automated, generally it the time-consuming tasks that don’t add strategic value, such as creating a PowerPoint slide deck or typesetting employee certificates. By implementing automation software the company will save costs, improve productivity and reliability and deliver a return on your investment.
- Use your data: For years marketers have collected customer data, now is the time to use it. By combining data with technology solutions, intelligent and intuitive technology solutions can be introduced to combine customer insights with personalised, relevant information that is sent at the right time to impact customer behaviour. It is also valuable to look at unstructured data as patterns can emerge in unexpected places and give real insight into behaviours than the structured data could provide on its own.
To gather relevant information, rather than waiting for monthly reports, patterns should be identified from the data throughout the month. This provides interesting insights that can be used dynamically and put you ahead of the competition. It is also key that the information is sent to the right person so that they are able to use the information, for example, if recipients open up banner adverts, the sender should be alerted to this and use this information to touch base with the interested recipient.
- Assess the business needs: With the fundamental technology solutions in place, easing delivery and utilising data effectively, you can now determine your businesses specific AI needs. There are several solutions available but not every solution may be the right one for you, so unpack your specific needs and then determine what the best solution would be to meet them. It is important that you consider the legacy systems and collaborate with the technology teams when looking at technology solutions for your business.
- Implement your AI solution: With your strategy in place and your planning well underway, it is now time to implement your AI solution. It could be anything from anticipating future customer purchases, presenting offers to customers timeously, improving media buying and monitoring social media comments to determine brand affinity. There is a list of options available to meet your needs. Again you should work closely with the technology teams within your company to determine which solutions are the best to meet your particular business needs.
There is no doubt that AI brings about some uncertainty with the promise of great things for marketers and business. While still in its infancy, this is the time for marketers to slowly start implementing technologies that lay the foundation for AI at a later stage. Marketers should start getting familiar with automation technology and determine exactly what they expect from AI technology before making the leap and introducing AI solutions in the organisation.
While it can be tempting to jump in head first, by adopting a slow and steady approach to AI implementation, they will be setting themselves up for success in the long-term. But it is important to start implementing the technology now.
BrandQuantum has developed software solutions that can help companies to deliver consistent brand experiences across all communications. BrandOffice empowers every employee across an organisation to automatically create consistently branded documents across Word, PowerPoint and Excel. BrandMail is an email solution that helps companies to deliver consistent emails with beautifully designed, tamperproof email signatures that are sent out with every single email, both to internal and external recipients.
With BrandQuantum all content across email, Word, PowerPoint and Excel can be predeveloped and approved to enable quick and easy access while ensuring brand consistency in all customer engagements. For more information about BrandQuantum and our brand consistency software solutions, please visit our website www.brandquantum.com.