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A Guide To AI in Advertising

September 1, 2020
Thomas Hampson
written by Thomas Hampson

Artificial intelligence plays a significant role in online advertising. In this guide, we discuss how machine learning and AI is used in the industry.

AI is more than just robots and automation.

Its influence on advertising is often overlooked but businesses need to focus on AI as technology advances and the benefits become more apparent.

AI has transformed the way in which we choose to advertise, as well as keeping businesses on the ball in an ever-changing world. So, here are some of the things you need to know about AI in the world of advertising.

How is AI used in advertising?

There are a number of ways in which AI is being used in advertising, and these are making all the difference. Here are some of the key ways in which AI is being used in modern advertising:

Search engine analysis

Google, for example, uses an AI system called RankBrain in order to analyse and organise search queries, and this helps provide better and more accurate results. RankBrain is one part of Google’s core algorithm which uses machine learning (ML) to work out what the most relevant results are for any search queries.

Recommendations

Online recommendations use AI to influence the choices we make and it can have an impact on advertising. Consider streaming sites like Netflix, that use Predictive Analytics to be able to offer more accurate recommendations to customers.

User data

Businesses are constantly looking for ways of producing user-friendly ads and relevant content, and this is one of the things AI is massively useful for, as it conducts research and analyses user data to help with this.

Social media

Facebook uses Deeptext to analyse and interpret content and find its meaning. It does this with machine learning and then provides relevant ads to users based on that content.

Read our article on AI’s influence on social media for more.

AI terms you should know

When looking to understand the importance and benefit of AI in the world of advertising, you need to make sure you understand key terms. Here is a list of some of the most important AI terms you are going to need to know.

Algorithms

An algorithm is a set of pre-programmed instructions that a computer will follow in order to achieve a particular outcome. This can be a simple process, but it is something that is actually genuinely used for more complicated problems.

Automation

Automation is the process of using automatic, usually digital, equipment to carry out tasks in the manufacturing and production industry.

Bias

Bias, typically known as AI bias or ‘machine learning bias’ is a phenomenon where data analysis and algorithms produce results that are prejudicial against particular groups of people.

Big data

Simply put, big data is an information asset that requires a new mode of processing in order to gain better insight, make clearer decisions, and adapt and diversify. It is a key component of AI in modern business.

Corpus

Corpus is basically a collection of data that is typically a body of text which is generally labelled with text annotations.

Data mining

Data mining refers to the process of extracting important and pertinent information from data that wasn’t evident or obvious before.

Machine learning (ML)

Machine learning refers to the AI application that provides algorithms that provide systems with the ability to improve and learn automatically without the need to be pre-programmed.

What are the advantages and disadvantages?

It is important to understand the advantages and disadvantages of AI when it comes to marketing and advertising, and these are some of the key things you need to consider.

Advantages

  1. It’s more efficient

From a business perspective, one of the key benefits of using AI as part of your marketing strategy is the fact that it is far more efficient than having to deal with things yourself.

  1. It’s cost-effective

Another advantage is that you can cut costs and save money by using AI, because it saves you having to hire people to do the same tasks.

  1. Personalization

One of the key parts of marketing is trying to make it more personal and meaningful for customers. And AI can do this easily by collecting user information, and contacting them with personal recommendations.

Disadvantages

  1. Lack of human interaction

Even in this world dominated by technology it does seem clear that a lot of people still value human interaction, and would still rather talk to a person. This is where AI is flawed as it doesn’t allow for people to do this.

  1. Removes the emotional aspect

Another issue here is to do with the lack of emotional involvement that comes with AI. Machines are only capable of making logical, binary decisions, and the human aspect is lost a little with this.

  1. Puts jobs at risk

One of the other drawbacks with the use of AI is the fact that it is taking away from a job that a human could be doing, and this can impact unemployment in a negative way.

Is AI going to take over advertising?

It will be interesting to consider how the marketing and advertising industry might look moving forward, as well as how much AI is going to have an impact on it. There are a lot of ideas you need to think about here, and there are so many ways in which AI can (and will) be integrated into the marketing and advertising arenas. In the wake of the global pandemic, we’ve all been facing, it is more important than ever for businesses to take positive steps and do as much as they can to reassess the way they are doing business. This could well lead to AI being integrated more into the business world in the future.

It would seem that there are a lot of advantages to AI in business advertising, and it certainly provides companies with a fast and efficient way of honing their company’s marketing and producing better results. However, this approach is not without its pitfalls, and companies need to make sure they are making the right decisions here. So it is important to think about the pros and cons of this, but there is no doubt that AI is transforming how modern businesses advertise.

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Author
Thomas Hampson

Thomas Hampson
Thomas is a director at Adzooma and responsible for managing the business’s portfolio of software products. With more than 10 years’ experience in the technology sector and the responsibility of planning for the future of the popular advertising software platform, he is focused on democratising Machine Learning and automation to drive positive business outcomes for small and medium-sized businesses.
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