Will Artificial Intelligence Take My Marketing Job?

while we can talk about the the goal of
making this enrich people's lives and careers there's always going to be a
reality that if there's a way to intelligently automate things that
previously required humans they may not talk about it in public but behind
closed doors they're trying to find a way to become more efficient because if
they don't they're competitors sometimes when we talk about artificial
intelligence there can be almost a paranoia about you know computers taking
over everything so do you think there's any risk of marketers being replaced or
really losing jobs at all by machine learning and artificial intelligence
yeah so this is something it's almost always the first question I get so I've
done probably 50 or 60 talks on AI over the last two years and the audience
always wants to know like oh my gosh am I going to lose my job so would I what I
tell people is like no one can look out five years from now and start truly
accurately predicting the impact on jobs like anybody who claims that they know
one where the other is is just guessing maybe an educated guess but they're just
guessing because the technology moves so fast it's primarily intended to augment
our knowledge and capabilities I think generally speaking we can all agree that
that's mostly what it's designed to do is meant to take very time-intensive
data-driven manual tasks and automate those where we can in the hopes then
that marketers will spend more time being creative being strategic being
empathetic considering the emotions and the implications of the actions we take
in theory that's where it's gonna go I I do worry I think there's a reality that
many of the organization's racing ahead are publicly traded companies that have
responsibilities to their shareholders and while we can talk about the the goal
of making this enrich people's lives and careers there's always going to be a
reality that if there's a way to intelligently automate things that
previously required humans they may not talk about it in the public but behind
closed doors they're trying to find a way to become more efficient because if
they don't their competitors will so I just look at it as its
conversation that we have and that we illuminate because otherwise I think we
might get into a place where three to five to seven years down the road we do
see more automation than maybe we wanted to in the process and we lose some the
human side of the brand so I do you guys think about that I mean do you consider
the implications as you're building things a little bit I mean I think
you're right though this is like a very long scale process and I've heard an
analogy and the past may – like electrification of people being
concerned about you know if we don't have or if we have electric drills or
something on the factory floor that that might actually like replace certain
workers but they're going to be so much more efficient you earlier reference
Google Maps it's not preventing people from figuring out what they're going but
man it makes it a lot easier and every now and then you do get some you know
pretty strange recommendations about making a turn or
something that doesn't make sense if you're very familiar with the route and
people are still there to correct and guide so I think it's going to make
people tremendously more efficient but also like you mentioned for marketers in
particular there's a tremendous amount of creative work that marketers do
content creation in and of itself it's very difficult to automate or even to
augment things like tone and style which can be so so critical to to marketers
when they're when they're creating that content are very hard to fake with new
machines and you know I think there's gonna be roles that that will get
replaced people far smarter than us if done studies out of like the University
of Oxford in 2014 did a study on the computerization of 702 jobs and they
were basically trying to predict out how likely a job was to be completely
intelligently automated and telemarketers I believe was number one
on the list and so I actually said that one time at a talk in New York and a guy
like had an existential crisis in the crowd cuz he was a telemarketer
apparently and so the hand went up right after the talk is like I'm a
telemarketer like am ia bad a job and I was like well you may have you may spend
10 years training the algorithms that replace what you do I don't know but
that's where we're at it's like there's gonna be things where you and I could
sit there like that totally gonna be intelligent automated like why wouldn't
it be like the Machine can do it better than a human every time so like an
example would be again a really tangible when the
Associated Press writes all their earnings reports using natural language
generation a very rudimentary form of AI and in some cases not really even
considered AI anymore but if you give it structured data the columns and rows and
then you've trained it the story to write give it synonyms get the branching
logic the machine can literally write thousands of them in a second versus a
human that would have to sit there and pull the data and double-check the data
and all that so that the writing of earnings reports was intelligently
automated now is it AI you could probably argue both ways but the reality
is it doesn't have to be from you know if you think about it on a one to five
scale a full autonomy it doesn't have to be a five to disrupt entire career paths
and jobs so if your job was to write earnings reports you don't have a job
writing earnings reports anymore now you may be doing more human interest
stories and you may have built a more fulfilled job like you may do more
enjoyable things and be more creative but if that was all that was there for
you to do you're out of a job now and I think there's a lot of roles in
marketing that are like that if your job is to a/b test landing pages you're not
gonna have a job hopefully you find something else too but like that's not
going to be there you would think media buying won't
really exist for humans in the future like that to me is a really practical
thing I've got a million dollars to spend I've got a thousand places I could
spend that money how in the world is a human gonna figure out the optimal way
to do that like I graduated from college in 2000 there was like five places you
could put your money in 2000 goggle was a year old the iPhone didn't exist we
didn't have social media blogging wasn't really a thing influencer marketing
wasn't a thing like there was trade magazines and I don't know like buy ads
send direct mail telemarketing like there wasn't many places for it
so that's the kind of thing where you look at the complexity of doing that job
now and you think about what make machines
excel at and there are definitely jobs that I could sit here and make a list of
20 of them for you that I don't think in five years will exist doesn't mean that
person would have a career anymore they just may be doing something other than
the thing that a machine can do better yeah I tend to agree I mean within the
broad fields of marketing and services you know none of those are
going to be replaced but overnight but it's particularly tasks within that
field so that could be like lead qualification or some within sales or
parts of keyword research within marketing or ticket routing within
certain psa's things like that that are fairly redundant and there tends to be a
correct answer I think we'll see intelligently automated analytics is one
that I can't wait for it to get better cuz trying to find insights just take
Google Analytics for example or even hub spots performance data there's so much
to analyze and most marketers aren't analysts by trade like we don't come out
of school drilling how to dive into spreadsheets and run pivot tables and
like find insights out of the hundred things you could extract from last
week's performance data which five matter like that's a really hard thing
to scale and so for me like running an agency I look at it every day it's like
well what are the things we are core to what we do the success we can create for
clients that we're not really good at and it's almost impossible to scale that
thing and analyzing analytics is right at the top of that list so we've
actually built a system where it takes insights we use natural language
generation it takes the data it spits out a report we basically just answer
the same ten questions about what happened on the site top page is entry
points top conversion points and we have the Machine write the narrative so we
can literally write 25 client reports by pushing a button
where it used to be five to seven to ten hours per client per month so we took
something we're replacing his job like nobody lost their jobs because of it but
we took an inefficiency create a greater value for the client and reduced the
time we had to spend doing it right that also probably provides an opportunity to
really dig in deeper on any of those insights that might surface and yeah
yeah the human looks at and says that makes a lot of sense like I wonder why
you can dig a little deeper but human doesn't have to sit there and stare at
spreadsheets all day or look at the analytics date on the graphs and Pharaoh
wasn't saying and then try and train some of strata school to do that like
it's just it's not an efficient way to scale no nobody has complained yet it's
the office that they don't have to do that thing anymore you

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