Three new and exciting ways brands are using AI on social media

From scanning Instagram for pics of your products to connecting with influencers, using AI can boost your marketing efforts considerably

Three new and exciting ways brands are using AI on social media

Artificial intelligence (AI) may not take down the human race like it does in the movies, but it’s primed to change the marketing world as we know it. This evolving technology will open doors for automating processes and delivering more personalised experiences across platforms – including ones we haven’t even dreamed of yet.

According to a recent report from BrightEdge, 60% of enterprise marketers plan to use AI in their content marketing this year and 32% said marketing technologies must integrate AI into their workflow. They argued AI would help them gain a better understanding of their customers, increase productivity and save time, and create better performing content.

While we’ve yet to see the full capabilities of AI – and many marketers are still adjusting to the learning curve – select brands are already using this powerful tool to engage their audiences on social media.

Placing personalised social feeds on their websites

Brands are using AI to bridge the gap between social engagement and e-commerce. Cosmetics brand ColourPop, for example, wanted to drive its five million Instagram followers to its product and checkout pages where they can then make a purchase. That’s why the brand set up an algorithm-based feed of social posts customised for each Instagram user right on its mobile site.

“The biggest thing about mobile shopping right now is if you don’t know what you’re looking for, discovering that is really difficult,” said Nate Dierks, director of technology at ColourPop, in a Qubit blog post. “This has given me a lot of thought about the purpose of the mobile website: it needs to be just a stripped-down discovery page that shows you what other people are looking at, what’s popular, what’s about to sell out and what you should know about this brand.”

By placing personalised social posts on its website, ColourPop is able to build intuitive and comprehensive customer experience and make the research and buying process more seamless for social audiences.

Finding social influencers among their audiences

Almost 90% of marketers believe influencer marketing can positively impact how consumers feel about a brand and 70% think influencer marketing budgets will increase in 2018, according to research by eMarketer, the research firm. Yet over 70% of these marketers say that finding the right influencers for their campaigns is still a challenge.

That’s where AI can help. Brands can use AI to scan their social audiences for influencers who are leading the conversation and creating high-quality content. For instance, Kia used AI to find influencers for its Super Bowl campaign. The car brand was able to tap 100 social stars to help share Kia’s message during the game.

By automating this process, Kia didn’t have to waste time manually scouring social conversations for valuable players. They quickly found the best influencers for their brand and audience and launched a multi-platform social campaign for one of the biggest social events of the year.

Deploying social image recognition

AI software can now recognise people and objects in images with over 99% accuracy. This technology can be extremely valuable in marketers’ hands. It can be used to gauge customers’ in-store visits and social engagements and match those activities to create a comprehensive customer profile. Marketers can then deliver more personalised experiences – such as discounts and welcome messages – once customers enter their stories.

This is especially beneficial considering there are millions of users on visual platforms like Snapchat and Instagram – and billions of posts being shared each day. It can be tough to comb through that content and identify potential buyers. For example, people may post pictures of your products but not include your brand or product name in the caption. If you’re only tracking keywords, you may never see these posts. And you’ll miss out on identifying and understanding these interested customers.

With AI-based image recognition, brands can expand their social listening beyond just text and access valuable data to better understand their audiences.

AI and social media join forces

AI may seen intimidating and enigmatic, but for marketers, it really points to one major opportunity: data. AI-powered tools can save time and resources by automating processes and surfacing more data for your brand.

Marketers can then use that data to accomplish a range of goals, such as finding influencers, delivering more personalised experiences, and closing the loop between social engagements and online or in-store conversions.

Paul Herman
Paul Herman

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