3 Ways AI is Impacting Digital Marketing
We live in a world where technological advancement and growth is happening faster than any time in history – and it shows no sign of slowing down. The constant need to progress can be attributed to continual needs for businesses to stay ahead of the competition and satisfy evolving consumer needs, as well as to provide superior products and services, reduce costs, grow revenue and profits. These imperatives have led to the increase, interest, and adoption of AI in business as these intelligent systems are able to perform tasks at a scale, speed and precision unmatched by humans and even reduce likelihood human error.
According to McKinsey & Company, applying AI in marketing has the potential to unlock $2.6 trillion worth of value in marketing and sales, which shouldn’t be a surprise; AI increases efficiency, improves customer experiences at various branding and communication touchpoints, and increases Return on Marketing Investment (ROMI). Without a doubt, AI is one of the biggest opportunities for businesses to improve their marketing operations effectiveness.
Let’s look at three ways AI is being deployed to improve the digital marketing process:
Increase Your SEO Ranking
Across major Search Engine’s Result Page (SERP), the first page is usually monopolized by the biggest brands credited to their army of content creators and SEO experts that ensure the brand dominates those first few organic search results. This is worrisome for other similar businesses trying to gain brand visibility since users often only scroll through the first page of search results for their search query. By that time most users find what they were looking for or attempt another search. The first five organic results account for 67.60% of all clicks and organic results ranking from 6 - 10 accounts for 3.73% of clicks. Page one accounts for a whopping 71.33% of clicks but after this performance drops off sharply: pages two and three receive a mere 5.59%. Let’s not forget to include the paid search results, which big brands can invest in due to their big budgets, thus getting priority right at the top and further reduces the real estate left for organic search results displayed on the first page.
When you consider all this, the chances of your brand’s website appearing among the top organic search results on the first page may seem bleak; unless you’re a market leader in your industry, or you occupy a very specific niche or customers are looking specifically for your business. A lack of brand visibility leads to low website traffic, brand engagement and sales; no matter how great your products or services are, users need to be able to find them to buy from you. All that can be turned around by optimizing your Search Engine Optimization (SEO) strategy with AI.
The few key elements that drive SEO performance and impact your brand’s search ranking are on-page elements, structured data, content freshness, topic relevance, depth and accuracy of content, internal linking, and organic user behavior. Major importance is attributed to organic user behavior which are those actions the user performs when on your website. Search engines are able to identify a positive relationship between user experience (UX) and user behaviour using various KPIs and metrics, so optimizing site UX is vital to unlocking superior SEO rankings.
Improving user behaviour can be achieved by personalizing UX, with one effective technique being implementing recommendation engines on your website. Recommendation engines deliver personalized content based on the user’s online history, browsing habits and similarity to other users, providing suggestions that match their tastes, preferences, and profile. 43% of internet users report they preferred ‘similar product recommendations based on purchase/ search’ as the most appealing form of personalization. Aside from improving UX, recommendations will also improve customer engagement, retention, sales, and revenue.
A suitable example to showcase the benefits gained from recommendation engine is when IKEA Retail (Ingka Group) adopted a recommendation engine and increased their global average order value for ecommerce by 2%, there was a 400% increase in the relevant recommendations displayed, and a 30% improvement in CTRs.
Avoid Fraudulent Clicks
Brands spend huge parts of their advertising budget on Pay-Per-Click (PPC) advertising. PPC puts the winning bidder at the top of the search results ahead of SEO results which improves brand awareness and recognition and is an immediate advertising tactic opposed to the long-term SEO strategy. PPC is proven to drive increases in website traffic, conversions, and ROI. However, ‘click fraud’ has become a huge problem in recent years. Click fraud are illegitimate clicks that do not accrue from a genuine user’s interest in the offer displayed by PPC adverts but rather aim to inflate your ad spending. This could either be an attack from a competitor or search engine.
In 2020, 8.4 billion GBP was spent on paid search advertising in the UK alone. An estimated 10-15% of total clicks were fake, resulting in wasted marketing spend that does not create value. In addition to inflated costs and waste, competitiveness is reduced and marketers have a false sense of the results being driven by search marketing. Unfortunately, many businesses are blind to these silent and malicious attacks that harm their growth.
A manual solution is to rigorously monitor PPC analytics to identify irregularities in clicks and try to identify the source and actively address this issue, but this is manual, time consuming, inefficient, and unsustainable. Rather, AI can autonomously scour large amounts of data at speeds faster than any human could and identify patterns in the characteristics of click fraud and take automated preventative action; prevent click fraud before it occurs and damages your advertising budget and marketing effectiveness.
Create Engaging Content Faster
Creating engaging and relevant content is a core marketing pillar because it increases website relevance, SEO visibility and SERP ranking, which results in increased traffic, engages readers and drives brand awareness. Unfortunately, the process of creating original content is arduous and time consuming, requiring a clear content brief, finding keywords that correctly position your brand, and then producing high-quality content. What’s more, the life of great content is shorter than ever due to the constant inundation of new content and shorter audience attention spans. No wonder 65% of marketers find coming up with engaging content as a challenge and 60% of marketers find it difficult to produce content consistently.
One solution to overcoming the three-fold challenge of consistently producing high-quality, relevant, and engaging content are AI solutions such as Generative Pre-Trained Transformer or “GPT3”. GPT3 is an AI-powered tool that trained on extensive examples of text and uses deep-learning to produce text that is human-like. A user inputs a text prompt and GPT3 builds and expands on that prompt using its knowledge of associated topics and themes to generate high-quality text. While it may not provide a completely automated solution as humans must remain in the loop to fact and sanity check the copy, GPT3 offers a powerful way to overcome writer’s block, create new ideas, and even offer new perspectives on issues and topics. Another approach to generating high quality content lies in developing a keen understanding of the data and the patterns and trends they contain. Combining predictive analytics with data mining can also be used to search for future trends and patterns hidden among large volumes of data by analyzing your target audience’s interest areas using their online history. This can give you an advantage in curating content that is tailored to specific audience profiles. The application of these AI technologies ensures you always produce engaging and relevant content that your target audience identifies with and reciprocates through conversions.
Adopting AI can improve what your business has to offer and improve your marketing process to deliver results in terms of an increase in revenue, profits, and conversions. AI is already playing a huge role in the digital marketing sector. The question is what opportunities exist for your business and what is required to reap the benefits.
If you are exploring ways that AI can turbo-charge your marketing strategy, get in touch with the Brainpool team at [email protected].
Written by Natalia Elizabeth Reuben and Clayton Black