Marketers, arguably more-so than any other professional, are always on the lookout for the newest trends or eye-catching advancements to capture the attention of their intended audience. Working with limited time and resources, it’s imperative to be the first to capitalize on the next great idea to stand out from the competition. What is already a rapidly evolving industry, has become even more fast-paced in the last year with tools based on generative AI absolutely transforming the world of marketing. Although some individuals in creative marketing may express hesitation or fear about embracing these tools, citing concerns over job loss, lack of innovation, or the inability of machines to be truly creative, I believe that generative AI not only enhances our creativity but also empowers creative professionals by expanding their range of tools and mediums.
When it comes to marketing and generative AI, there are several quick wins to be had, such as writing copy, developing campaign briefs, and generating visual assets. Even the most novice marketer can accomplish tasks such as these with AI, but the true potential of these AI tools is much broader, as they can dramatically improve the efficiency of marketing efforts in a variety of ways. For instance, one such example is the ability to make data more accessible, regardless of whether or not you're well versed in dealing with heavy data. AI can help digest data, analyze it at scale, and share insights with various audiences. Rather than using AI to accomplish simple tasks, why not use it to elevate your overall strategy in a more holistic manner.
Now we know that AI can be used to enhance our existing skills – let’s say to edit your written work or help you brainstorm for a new campaign, but AI lets professionals push things even further by helping them dive into fields that they may be less familiar with. For example, as a non-web designer with no coding knowledge, I used AI tools to build an entire website with complex interactions, complete with code generated by ChatGPT. Learning how to do that all by myself would have taken me months at the very least. While this is just one example that I’ve personally played around with, there are a countless number of ways that generative AI can help people of all experience levels learn and execute new skills.
Rather than using AI to accomplish simple tasks, why not use it to elevate your overall strategy in a more holistic manner.
In addition to using AI as a tool to complete your daily tasks or help you gain a new skill, generative AI also enables marketing professionals to have even more ownership over their content. When a designer needs an image, they’ve historically had limited options: downloading from a stock website that most other designers also use or conducting an in-house production day. However, stock images often don't fully meet creative needs and can be expensive when used extensively, and in-house productions are costly and time-consuming, with the original vision often being lost in the process. Generative AI tools offer a solution to both of these challenges by giving creators full ownership and control over their vision, without the high costs or lengthy timelines. Designers can simply generate and re-generate custom images that closely align with their intended vision, easily bypassing the limitations of stock images and traditional productions.
Sure, there may be a few limitations when trying to generate something very specific, but the rapid evolution of AI platforms has already led to significant improvements in the quality and capabilities of generative AI. The transition from Midjourney V4 to V5 has resulted in vastly more realistic image generations, while the gap between ChatGPT 3.5 and 4 is similarly impressive. As these platforms become more accessible to the broader public, we can expect even more creative uses and solutions to emerge, driving further innovation and quality improvements. It’s important to keep in mind that the technologies we’ve seen so far are still just the beginning – in due time we hope to see the true extent of what generative AI can produce.
As these platforms become more accessible to the broader public, we can expect even more creative uses and solutions to emerge, driving further innovation and quality improvements.
In the meantime, both large and small brands stand to greatly benefit from generative AI tools. Smaller brands can now develop an entire professional-looking language without external help, while larger brands can increase efficiency by generating more content and conducting more tests with the same manpower. Regardless of where a brand stands today, it is now easier than ever to elevate its marketing efforts without increasing headcount or marketing spend – a win-win if you ask any marketing executive.
While this sounds like a dream-come-true scenario, it doesn’t come without its share of challenges. Arguably, one the biggest challenges we face today lies in the adoption rate of AI tools. While some people may already consider themselves AI pros, there’s still a large section of the population who hasn’t tried any form of generative AI. The rapid pace of innovation and the sheer volume of new releases can be intimidating, making it difficult to keep up. Plus, each tool comes with its unique use case and learning curve, requiring a willingness to experiment and learn. Thankfully, there is an abundance of information online to help get started – it's just a matter of taking that first step. Then, of course, there’s the ongoing discussion of regulation and rights when it comes to generative AI and intellectual property. This is something to keep in the back of our minds when using generative AI. As we’re just at the beginning of this new journey, only time will tell how governments and various entities regulate AI.
With all of this being said, it’s obvious that generative AI tools offer an unprecedented opportunity for marketing professionals to expand their horizons, enhance their capabilities, and transform the marketing landscape. By overcoming the challenges of adoption and embracing the potential these tools offer, we can shape a brighter, more efficient, and more innovative future for the marketing industry.