Contrary to what your social media feed is probably saying, artificial intelligence (AI) isn’t exactly new. Scientists had a concept of AI as early as 1950 and have steadily been working on it since. What we’re seeing instead is a watershed, a new, more exciting plateau.
The technology has reached an inflection point—one where advanced generative AI ‘comprehends’ human language. “Since it can basically understand you, and can respond in a sophisticated, personalized way,” says Oji Udezue, Chief Product Officer at Typeform. “Because its trained on a partial copy of the internet, you're basically talking to a smart person with a very big brain who understands almost everything you’re asking about.”
This news changes the game for the marketing world. In the past, personalizing customer and prospect interactions took so much work to get right. Marketers had to pour their blood, sweat, and tears into high-touch programs. Now, they can feed customer data (via form responses) into AI, and it personalizes their experience and messaging. No custom code required.
Here’s the truth: The better AI gets at learning about audiences and their behaviors, the better marketing will become—if teams use the tools available to them.
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Let’s peel back the hype and focus on how AI will and won’t take the marketing world by storm. With Oji’s expertise, we'll also look at the Typeform roadmap and how our AI features will transform marketers’ customer interactions (and to-do lists) for good.
How marketing won’t change with AI
Whatever technology comes, the purpose of marketing remains the same. Marketing has always been about storytelling to generate interest and drive demand for product or service. That won’t change.
Day-to-day workflows, however, are a different story. AI helps marketers do more of what they’re already doing—for better or worse.
Remember the super serum that turned Steve Rogers into Captain America? The serum amplified what already existed inside a person—a good person became great, and a bad person became worse.
Think of AI as modern marketing’s “super serum.”
Great marketers craft helpful content for their audience to drive value. AI supercharges their efforts to make way for even more top-notch marketing. It’s a win for everyone.
On the flip side, bad marketing—the kind that’s unhelpful, boring, self-aggrandizing in all the wrong ways, or solely created to rank—isn’t going anywhere. In fact, AI will equip marketers who make bad content to produce more of it faster.
Where crappy filler content already dominates the SERPs, generative AI further muddies the waters and makes it harder for searchers to find valuable content.
Contrary to what the AI hype might suggest, generative AI isn’t a magic wand. Waving it won’t solve the big-picture problems plaguing the marketing scene. No matter how exciting each new AI tool is, impersonal outreaches and generic messaging won’t cut it.
The core of every marketer’s job remains the same—to speak to everyone in their audience and say the right thing at the right time.
Those that use AI to facilitate this task will be unstoppable.
How marketing will change with AI
Two words: efficiency and personalization.
“The very best tools will use AI to improve time to value—your output will be more powerful and higher quality with less effort,” says Oji.
With AI, marketers can complete the same amount of work more quickly or level up their quality with less effort. Oji recommends using AI-enhanced marketing tools so that marketers can:
Overcome the curse of the blank page and get something off white paper
Assist with idea generation and research to save time at key steps in the creative process
Craft a finished product faster, from social copy to emails to blog posts
But the true strategic power of generative AI lies in personalization—learning about customers and crafting targeted messaging. Oji says using AI to understand customer behavior is the Holy Grail of marketing.
Generative AI offers a solution to the problem of bad, impersonal marketing. “We are at the inflection point in AI,” Oji says. “It will be able to react to each customer in a cost-effective way. You'll be able to see leads you want and predict how they will behave. You'll be able to send them messages exactly how they want them—in a way that'll encourage the buyer journey.”
Lead conversion starts with understanding the audience. AI takes that to the next level by allowing marketers to predict audience behavior better.
In addition to boosting conversion, AI will drive better customer retention. And it’s not just marketing—service representatives no longer have to guess what support tickets mean. They can quickly absorb a customer’s root issue to give them exactly what they need.
Marketers have so much to do, so little time, and (often) so little budget. That’s why many fall into the trap of treating audiences uniformly or using generic, ineffective messaging. AI changes that.
“You should be able to narrowcast marketing to each individual while still crafting an overall marketing campaign,” Oji says. “And you should be able to do it at a really good cost.”
The AI essentials: 4 tips to start using AI in your marketing
AI isn’t a pie-in-the-sky innovation. It’s here, and it’s time to get tactical.
“Everyone needs to get familiar with it, start to experiment, start to find the right vendors to partner with,” Oji says. Not sure where to begin? These four tips are the perfect first steps.
1. Start simple
If you’re new to the AI world, ease yourself into it. Run searches for the best AI tools, and watch YouTube videos to learn ChatGPT basics. Try Jasper as an entry-level AI copywriting tool—use its pre-made prompts, and feed it “memories,” or rules that Jasper applies to its writing.
The best marketers are curious, and they’re testing AI capabilities where they’re already showing up in their marketing stack, like Typeform and HubSpot. Tap into AI use cases to transform your day-to-day workflows.
2. Use your voice
When using products you already know and love, test drive their new AI features and provide feedback.
Many brands are currently experimenting with AI capabilities and want to provide the best possible user experience. Take a minute to share what works and what doesn’t. Alpha and beta versions of these features typically let you rate output with a thumbs up or thumbs down and provide additional suggestions for improvement. In these early days of generative AI, you have a voice in shaping future AI tools to better serve your needs.
3. Add AI search tools to your devices
Pick your sidekick: ChatGPT, BingGPT, or Bard. Then, add this tool to everything you use for computing, Oji advises, from your phone to your tablet to your desktop.
By keeping AI tools close at hand, their use becomes second nature. Consistently turn to these products instead of search engines. With practice, many users find that AI search tools produce more personalized results from user-friendly, conversational inputs.
4. Craft precise prompts
Good prompts unlock the best results with generative AI. “AI tools require some precision [from your prompt] to drive precision on the output,” Oji says. You’re going to need practice to level up.
Each AI tool requires its own nuanced approach to prompting, so experiment early and often. Master what information your preferred tools need to generate the text you want. “Prompts are the new ABCs,” Oji says, so go back to the basics.
AI + Typeform: what we’re working on
Typeform’s mission is to make form-filling a little less… tedious. Around 40% of Typeform’s roadmap is AI-infused. Armed with predictive and generative AI, Typeform empowers marketers (or anyone needing a form) to understand their audiences better, predict behavior in new ways, and personalize at scale. And it’s just getting started.
Write and build better forms, faster
It’s sad but true: Most people don’t know how to write great surveys, forms, or quizzes. Happily, Typeform has already launched several AI tools so marketers can build better forms in seconds. Users simply enter their form’s purpose, and Typeform generates questions for them.
When it’s time to fine-tune and improve a question’s wording, Typeform’s AI draws from experience, data, and best practices to make changes that resonate with customers and improve response rates.
Automate lead generation
With the help of AI (and Typeform), the lead-gen process speeds up from start to finish.
Typeform is creating automatic lead-generation tools that let marketing teams specify what kind of leads they want to attract. These tools automatically apply best practices and recommended text to build the best possible form with the best possible questions. Marketers can focus on driving value for their audience in other ways instead.
Foster genuine conversations with Formless
In an ideal world, marketers could have authentic, real-time conversations with each one of their leads. Until now, that’s been impossible at scale.
With Typeform’s AI-powered Formless, typeforms respond to people based on personalized text or voice input. “Every new lead, every new conversation feels very bespoke,” Oji explains. Formless collects structured data from unstructured conversations and answers respondents’ questions within the form.
Typeform has been using predictive typing for years. Now, the combined power of predictive and generative AI gives respondents the experience of a 1:1 conversation with brands through responsive forms.
Oji points to Holler as an example of how quickly AI can change the game for marketers. “I run all my marketing data through it,” he says. “I've been searching for this kind of tool for six solid years, and we built it in a few months.”
Keep an eye on the horizon
In the world of AI, the times are changing at an increasingly fast pace. As Oji says, “It’ll start slowly, then it will become an avalanche.”
Marketers will adjust quickly to AI as brands like HubSpot and Typeform put new features and use cases directly into their hands. Oji advises marketers to “align with companies who you can trust to bring this technology to you in ways that you can actually use.”
For marketers who partner with brands on the cutting edge of AI, their work will become more efficient, creative, and personalized. This time next year, the marketing status quo will look completely different.
Case in point: The tech industry, Oji says, is chasing Artificial General Intelligence (AGI) next. “This isn’t just generative AI or predictive AI. It’s AI that understands the meaning of things.” AI is on its way to fully understanding code and language—and might be able to program itself one day. (We don’t know what we’d even do with that technology.)
In the meantime, the savviest marketers will adjust to AI as it stands now and enjoy the benefits it offers. Because if they don’t, someone else will. Take it from Oji: “The floor of excellence has just moved. You need to move so that you're not subterranean.”
On a final, ethical note
While AI presents endless possibilities in the realm of marketing, it's paramount that we prioritize ethical use of consumer data. We must resist the temptation to misuse or overstep boundaries when it comes to accessing and analyzing customer information. Embracing the idea of Zero Party Data (ZDP) is a step in the right direction; it champions data shared willingly and proactively by the consumer, ensuring trust remains intact. As we usher in an era of unprecedented change, maintaining consumer trust by not abusing their data should be at the forefront of every marketer's strategy.
If you’re ready to get in on the ground floor of AI-powered business tech, check out Typeform Labs. Get early access to our AI tools, test our best new ideas, and advance your marketing with AI—all before your competitors do.