There was a time when Artificial Intelligence (AI) seemed like a purely fictional concept. Something better suited to a movie screen than commercial infrastructure. However, we’ve come a long way since then and now AI is gradually integrating in to the business world. Using AI offers many advantages, from being able to cut costs and increase productivity, to exploring new and more innovative ways to build customer bonds. Two areas where it is becoming particularly embedded are email and social media marketing.

Using AI to improve email marketing campaigns

Email use worldwide will top 3 billion users by 2020 and email contact is the preferred form of communication, both B2B and B2C. However, click through rates can be low and many businesses struggle to see measurable ROI from resources invested into email marketing campaigns. Improving the performance of email marketing is something AI can easily be designed to do. For example, it can be used to automatically adjust timing, content and personalisation of emails, continually learning from actions and responses to better tailor campaigns to meet their goals.

AI is much more effective than A/B testing emails

There are two big differences between A/B testing and AI. The first is that an A/B testing campaign is working with emails in isolation. And the second is that AI is an intelligent programme that uses the context of email recipients as individuals where A/B testing does not. That’s why A/B testing can get stuck in superficial metrics and end up not providing the most accurate results, while AI can assess how well emails are performing in the context of the entire campaign and the people targeted by it.

Using AI to find influencers

Working with influencers is all part and parcel of brand building via social media. However, sometimes the human approach to making these matches doesn’t exactly work out. Increasingly, we’re seeing AI that is able to crawl a much larger potential pool of influencers and make better matches based on the precise values, goals and objectives of an individual brand.

Social media management

It’s no secret how much of a difference effective social media management can make to a marketing strategy. The use of AI as a management tool has huge potential for social media. Everything, from building content schedules, to analysing and managing content can be improved and optimised with machine learning that is designed to respond to what people want to see. The New York Times, for example, built Blossom – an AI that works with engagement data to make decisions about which of the 300+ stories the newspaper has to choose from every day should get the most promotion and top billing

Data mining

AI is an incredibly useful tool for sifting through the vast volume of data that is generated by social media and turning it into something viable that can be used to create brand insights. It can provide a more accurate picture of how content is performing, going above and beyond the simple metrics on offer to produce conclusions that can make a brand more competitive. AI can also reduce ‘time to insight,’ finding the meaning in a group or cluster of words at a much faster pace.

These are just a few of the ways in which AI is beginning to impact on social media and email marketing. The scope of what could be achieved is limited only by the capacity of humans to create and embrace it.