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BizReport : Advertising archives : July 06, 2017

Expert: Why machine learning automation is crucial for brands

Many marketers still have trouble defining machine learning, let alone harnessing the technology for their own customer engagement strategies. While daunting, machine learning can serve as an essential tool for commerce companies. Not only does it help to free up human talent, but it can deliver customers a more personalized experience that reflects their purchase history and predicts their future interests.

by Kristina Knight

Boost your bottom line

"Because businesses are transactional in nature, leveraging machine learning and automation allows businesses to make simple point transactions while scaling human talent, this means that sales, and other front-line representatives, are able to focus their time on working on some of the more engaging or complex interactions with clients," said Jamie Anderson, CMO, SAP Hybris. "Algorithms are able to learn from existing data, bringing forth the most relevant data at the appropriate time. Machine learning enables more efficient ecommerce interactions with a customer, thus making more transactions possible at any given time and boosting sales overall."

Aggregate all customer data in one place

"Many organizations are dealing with disparate data sources, with data siloed across departments, which means that insights pulled are often not fully representative of the company's transactions or most recent behaviors. Platforms that can aggregate data to deliver a live customer profile that is constantly evolving with their needs are key for today's marketers to ensure the customer data they possess is updated in real time and reflects evolving interests and preferences," said Anderson.

More effectively analyze customer data

"Once customer data has been funneled into a single repository, organizations can use machine learning to discover what products a customer is engaging with, what they're purchasing, and what interactions they've had with the brand across multiple touchpoints, both physical and digital," said Anderson. "This enables businesses to better understand a customer's wants and needs and cater to those desires through predictive analytics. Machine learning can help automatically segment customer profiles, based on behavioral and customer journey patterns, to match the best product or service purchase outcomes to the optimal customer profiles. Today's infrastructure needs to be working in real-time with a live transactional system pulling insights in the moment so that brands can react and adjust strategy rapidly."

Machine learning is friend, not foe

"The reputation surrounding AI and machine learning at times can be negative, with concerns that the technology will eventually lead to the elimination of some human jobs. In reality, the use of machine learning in marketing automation actually places greater focus on the human-to-human elements in marketing. Automating certain marketing functions gives marketers the freedom to save time on labor intensive tasks, such as interrogating large data sets, identifying and interpreting trends, and manually segmenting customer profiles, and focus their efforts on work that builds a more personal experience for their customers," said Anderson. "Additionally, as AI continues to evolve and responses become more intelligent, marketers will be beginning to look at ways to be able to address the more emotional aspects of consumer decision-making. Smart assistants and chatbot technologies are already using speech recognition and natural language processing to identify voice patterns in customer behavior to spot behavioral cues. These elements, which seem to delve into the role of the human marketer, will only work to create synergy between man and machine and facilitate a more streamlined and personalized customer experience."

Tags: advertising, AI tips, AI trends, artificial intelligence, ecommerce, SAP Hybris

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