There is a lot of hype about machine learning (ML). In fact, it is one of the hottest business topics right now. But when you look past the hype, ML’s wide range of practical applications for media professionals, sellers, and shops are only too obvious.
We’ll talk about how some of the largest agencies are using ML and Artificial Intelligence (AI) in just a moment. First, let’s look at the reasons why ML is gaining momentum in the Advertising Industry.
Traditional Analytics Models Are No Longer Effective
Disruption can bring great value, but it has lead to a situation where traditional methods of managing data— and analyzing it—have become very cumbersome.
Many sellers are struggling with the high volume of data available to them. Gaining even basic insights into the data has become difficult because of the sheer quantity and different ways it could be analyzed. That means targeting ads and deeply understanding an audience is nigh impossible. Wading through the historical reporting just takes too much time.
An additional challenge we’re facing is caused by that lack of quality insights into our audiences: how can you offer experiences that are engaging and relevant when prospects seem to be going in so many different directions at once? Ads need to be increasingly personalized in response to the ever-increasingly demanding consumer.
If we don’t address these challenges soon, campaigns will continue to be ineffective, irritate prospects and could even end up damaging brand reputation, never mind fail to generate financial rewards.
The Opportunities At Hand
Machine Learning is an inevitable step for advertising. There is so much data out there to take advantage of, and we must stay ahead of the wave to survive the intense change shaking up this industry.
But many shops are already using it unwittingly. Google CEO Sundar Pichai has started describing his company as “AI first,” and with good reason: Google AdWords is heavily driven by ML.
Juniper Research claims that machine learning algorithms used to drive efficiency across real-time bidding networks will generate USD 42 billion in annual ad spend by 2021, from USD 3.5 billion in 2016.
Machine learning is so attractive because it provides results, particularly in programmatic display. And effective ads directly translate into revenue, so optimization in this area can be very lucrative.
The insights ML can bring are often astounding, in fact. Profile data and behavioral insights mean we can now understand every individual in your target audience with precision. As you may know, this is called “cognitive.” Cognitive intelligence includes details like a customer’s personality, character, media habits, passions and desires. Cognitive marketing creates value for consumers by understanding their thinking more completely than ever before, and ML and AI are the technologies behind it.
ML can also reveal new audiences that were hidden from view. Saatchi & Saatchi LA and AKQA are currently using ML to target more efficiently. Firstborn is using AI to edit ads to make them more appropriate for the demographic or psychographic being targeted. Liion Agency and Exxact have partnered with Adext to intelligently optimize their ad budgets and discover new converting audiences across Facebook, Instagram and Google. The service also leverages AI and ML for Remarketing.
ML also has enormous time-saving potential, and the ability to support human infrastructure. Simply put, that means greater innovation, less stress and better results in less time. Studies have already shown that the creative input of shop staff is highly valuable, and the combination of machines and human talent in advertising is where the gold really lies.
Take The Leap Into Machine Learning
If agencies like JWT Canada, and those mentioned above are investing heavily in ML, and it is heavily creeping into programmatic advertising, audience and budget management, marketing forecasting, conversational commerce, and other areas, it undoubtedly deserves the attention of every agency across the world. And whether you look into supply-side platforms, demand-side platforms, real-time bidding or another area, the essential first step is what counts.
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3 Steps To Success
1. Start With A Strategy
ML is a great place to invest, but it’s important to have specific business goals and focus on them primarily, as well as how you will harness ML to achieve them. When there are so many options out there, it’s easy to leap in with enthusiasm. Begin with the end in mind, and ask yourself some questions: Which metrics are most important to you and your clients? How much time can you reasonably dedicate to new system integration? How much would you like to invest initially?
2. Choose Tools That Align
Some tools can be used to target individual platforms, such as the all-too-familiar Google AdWords. Others, like Adext, super-optimize all your paid media on Facebook, Instagram, and Google, as well as provide AdWords Remarketing services in a turnkey package. The Adext ML tech not only uses machine learning to find the best audience for any ad, but also adjusts your budgets across those platforms, so you’re always investing in the most effective ones.
AI will soon be able to integrate across tools, datasets, and platforms, so making a start and getting some preliminary data from the ones that make the most sense for your business now is worthwhile.
3. Get Your People Ready
Often, employees will need to be re-skilled to manage and utilize ML tools effectively, but this isn’t always the case. Some tools, such as Adext, are almost fully hands-off. However, a workforce that’s ready to embrace innovation and can learn to run pilot projects before scaling is essential. This approach allows you to test new tools and concepts in an agile, low-risk manner and move towards a more data-driven MO.
If you implement it with a little care, ML can revolutionize how your agency does business, as well as considerably boost and drive revenues, growth and increase client satisfaction... What’s more, ML is only in its infancy. Imagine what it will do for your business in the future.
Adext, the first and only Audience Management as a Service (AMaaS) in the world, uses the most advanced ML and AI technologies. It is designed to get you superior digital advertising results faster and better than any human, tool or software you’ve ever experienced before. On average, it increases ads' performance by 522%. Adext is free until it improves your current CPC.