Perspectives on AI in Marketing: Opportunities and Challenges Ahead

Artificial Intelligence is getting more sophisticated and popular by the day. From creative to development, businesses have started to incorporate AI into aspects of their work — but what do real marketers have to say about it?

As a digital marketing agency, (human)x always strives to stay up to date on any technology that impacts the marketing industry. In fact, our team is already exploring AI programs and functionalities, including plugins for coding text editors, AI autocomplete bots and new chatbots.

list of ai tools

While the industry continues to discover the potential benefits and challenges of this innovative technology, our expert team is working to uncover valuable insights into the world of AI and marketing. To gain a deeper understanding of how machine learning is affecting our present and future, we surveyed members of our team about their experience with and perspectives on AI.

Let’s take a look at what our team members had to say after experimenting with artificial intelligence to enhance their productivity and work.

The Present and Future of AI

AI is being curiously welcomed across disciplines. From copywriters to content strategists, digital marketing agencies are incorporating AI into the workplace. This might be in the form of ChatGPT, AI image and text generators, or DALL-E.

While some creatives are apprehensive about the implications of AI in the marketing industry, others are eagerly anticipating a time when AI could help save significant time and money on content and design. We believe the truth is somewhere in the middle.

As it stands now, AI is still a developing technology. It is difficult to predict its limitations and drawbacks, but it has the potential to become an incredibly valuable tool to support creative output. If used correctly—that is, as a resource and not as an answer key—AI can not only boost productivity, but even be used to market products.

For example, imagine if a clothing brand could train ChatGPT to understand its products and have inventory knowledge. That company could use ChatGPT as a custom, 24/7 chatbot to make suggestions to customers and even check if items are in stock. Tasking this job to AI could reduce the company’s cost as well as soothe consumer frustration.

Expert Insights on AI

AI has already made a noticeable impact on developers at digital marketing agencies. There are multiple tools being developed that leverage machine learning to assist with time-saving tasks, like allowing creatives to generate mockup text for campaigns that don’t yet have client approval, or help developers solve problems that would otherwise require hours of tedious searching through tech forums and documents. This allows marketing teams to redirect their time and energy toward more immediate project needs.

Just as important, however, is remembering that AI should be used as a tool or a starting-off point for professionals—not as a replacement for human creation. (human)x Senior Copywriter Michael Jester views artificial intelligence as a helpful tool to get creative juices flowing and prefers to use AI as a collaborator in his work rather than relying on technology to do any heavy lifting. Similarly, Creative Director Wes Keeton also uses AI to jumpstart ideas, viewing programs like DALL-E 2 as a type of technological copilot in his creative process.

Ai perspective from (human)x employee
Ai perspective from (human)x employee

Injecting the technology into the industry too quickly could lead to irresponsible content creation, over-reliance on the tool, or even a loss of creative jobs, all because AI can save money. AI still needs the guidance and mind of an actual human being to leverage its benefits. AI cannot substitute for human knowledge of clients’ individual—and often nuanced—needs. There is irreplaceable value in working with real people who take the time to understand a client’s brand positioning, and a robot can never fully grasp the brand values or strategic insights that are behind every successful marketing decision. While it can be used to spark creativity, the (human)x experts believe that AI should never be a substitute for true human input and creativity.

computer error image

As marketers, we should also consider the ethical implications of using AI. While AI is incredibly helpful in finding syntactic mistakes, troubleshooting, debugging, or generating code suggestions to refactor, it is our job to make sure we are not enabling plagiarism. The information AI outputs may be wrong or redundant, and because it does not cite the source of its knowledge, it can easily spread outdated insights or misinformation. Marketers must be extremely detailed and specific when asking questions to AI, as well as diligent about doublechecking information and writing good queries. For these reasons and more, (human)x and the Leap Group network have started an AI Ethics Committee to navigate this new creative landscape.

Our Takeaways

Overall, the (human)x team is cautiously optimistic about the future of AI and believes its success depends on how digital marketing agencies choose to utilize the technology. AI is not a replacement for human insight and skill, but it can be used as a powerful tool to jumpstart and optimize projects. A computer program, no matter how advanced, will always need meaningful human insight. Otherwise, digital marketing agencies will simply begin producing cookie-cutter content that anyone with access to AI tools can create.