Unlocking AI For Online Search Advertising

Unlocking AI For Online Search Advertising

by , Op-Ed Contributor, (October 01, 2018)

A colleague recently asked me what was top of mind when it comes to the evolution of online search. And for me, hands down, the answer is the impact of AI on advertisers’ future success.

The promise of AI for search advertising is mind-blowing, especially when you consider the amount of data it can digest and analyze in real-time and its ability to streamline through automation. And as Big Data volumes balloon and AI becomes even smarter, the way that brands engage with consumers will evolve into a relationship that is far more personal and seamless.

Most executives recognize the potential of AI to transform business. According to data from a recent NewVantage Partners study, 93% of executives say their companies are investing in AI for the future and 73% of executives say they are already seeing results from their Big Data and AI investments.

We are focused on providing advertisers with a long-term location for customer acquisition and engagement and increasing the lifetime value. Clearly, AI is a big part of that equation.

Below I have outlined three key principles around enabling advertiser success across through AI.

1. Embracing a risk mindset

Embracing change and risk is something that has allowed us to make incredible strides in extracting customer intent, making recommendations, and delivering increased value to advertisers through innovations like intelligent search. And we’ll continue to push the envelope. Brands that succeed must:

  • embrace risk
  • adapt to change
  • reward risk-takers
  • view failures as valuable learnings

In The Future Computed, Harry Shum writes:

“The companies and countries that will fare best in the AI era will be those that embrace these changes rapidly and effectively. The reason is straightforward: AI will be useful wherever intelligence is useful, helping us to be more productive in nearly every field of human endeavor and leading to economic growth. Put simply, new jobs and economic growth will accrue to those that embrace the technology, not those that resist it.”

By exploring the future and potential of technology, data, and tools, we can reimagine how customers think about their business — a critical success factor in the era of AI.

2. Democratizing the power of AI

Right now, it’s primarily larger organizations that are investing in predictive technologies and have relationships with companies that have the resources to explore the potential of AI. This is something that needs to change.

To succeed with small businesses, it’s critical to deliver AI at scale, which means prioritizing automation and working with engineering teams to build an intelligent advisor. Over time I see platforms evolving into a 24×7 automated solution that can work for both small and large customers. Infusing AI into recommendation engines will give us the ability to shift to automated optimization based on our understanding of the customer, their objectives, and their industry.

Another factor in democratizing AI is making the experience seamless. We have observed that customers have enthusiasm around the potential of AI, but that it is tempered by the fear of being overwhelmed. Larger, more sophisticated customers that are using multiple platforms and publishers may have different teams for lead generation, publishing, and content creation. Training takes time and human capital to embrace rapidly changing technology. So, we are focused on ensuring that AI is simple to use.

3. Focusing on customer success

It’s critical that a value exchange always skews toward our customers. Our success hinges on constantly seeking to understand success in our customers’ terms. This is the only path to ensure we can provide advertisers a long-term solution for customer acquisition. AI is pivotal to helping us to understand and predict the needs of consumers, so our advertisers can tailor their offerings and supply chain.

This is why we continue to evolve our offerings and platforms and encourage others to do the same. 

AI is rapidly revolutionizing the world of advertising, and I’m thrilled about the opportunities it will provide customers in the not-so-distant future.

As AI evolves, we encourage the industry to continue to make investments and push the bounds of what’s possible to amplify the value we provide advertisers and to deliver the transformative power of AI to everyone everywhere.


MediaPost.com: Search Marketing Daily