Best-selling author Seth Godin once said, “Content marketing is the only marketing left,” and that’s been reflected time and time again in the industry. Content marketing is often leveraged for brand building, improving SEO and attracting customers, among other marketing goals.
Today’s marketers say they spend a significant amount of their time creating content. In fact, 45% spend half of their week doing so, according to a Capterra survey. Busy – and often resource-strapped – marketing teams need help doing their jobs more efficiently. Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) can lend a hand in content generation. Here’s how you can make the case for an AI/ML writing tool and tips for seamlessly incorporating it into your marketing operations.
Making the case for an AI/ML writing tool
The first step is to make a case for this technology. The great news is that AI and ML have already been adopted for other marketing functions. They are most commonly used in email marketing, advertising and data analytics, but only a third of marketing professionals say they use them for content creation.
You can strengthen your case by using feedback from others in the industry who have given AI/ML writing tools their vote of confidence. In fact, 82% of marketers say AI/ML is just as good or better than human-generated content. Specifically, AI/ML is most successful at creating easy-to-read content with efficiency. And, 88% of marketers report that AI/ML software has saved their company time and money.
Cost is often a major barrier to entry, especially if you have a tight budget. Fortunately, there are free tools available that offer marketers an affordable way to experiment with this technology. About two out of three marketers say they use a combination of both free and paid AI/ML software.
How to choose a writing assistant that’ll meet your needs
There are many AI/ML writing tools out there, so how do you know which one is right for you?
First, take a step back by defining what success looks like. Determine how you’ll calculate the tool’s ROI. Some marketers are measuring effectiveness by cost or time savings. Others are more focused on positive impacts on SEO or content volume.
Each tool also will offer different features. Know what you want from your technology and how you plan to use it. For example, are you looking for help generating long-form content (e.g., blog and web copy), short-form content (e.g., ad copy, social media posts and marketing emails) or a mixture of both?
As you narrow down options, take advantage of demos and free trials offered by software companies to see if the tool is a fit for your team. And, read reviews from other businesses to see how well the tool performs on the day-to-day.
Getting past the initial hurdles
Beyond choosing the tool, implementation is just as important. Marketers who have incorporated an AI/ML writing tool say they’ve experienced two common hurdles – risk and governance issues and deployment challenges.
To prevent risk and governance issues, you should collaborate with IT teams before and during the tech selection process to ensure requirements, such as security, privacy and data quality standards, are met. Your IT team can also help determine whether the tool can operate within the organization’s infrastructure.
Manage deployment timeline expectations with stakeholders. Implementation can be time-consuming. In fact, 69% of marketers report that it took six months or longer to implement their AI/ML software.
Fortunately, research shows that there isn’t a steep learning curve for workers once the tool is in place. That said, be intentional about your training plan so that marketing team members can quickly get up to speed on how to use the tool’s features. This will also help maximize your investment.
Ultimately, it’s important to remember that AI/ML technology is still evolving. While it isn’t perfect, there are clear benefits for content marketers. AI/ML has a promising future in marketing. As the technology gets better at emulating human behavior, it will play a larger role as a writing assistant, helping marketers work smarter and more efficiently.
Meghan Bazaman is a senior analyst at Capterra, covering the latest trends, issues and developments in marketing technology. With more than a decade of experience conducting qualitative and quantitative research, her work has been featured in publications such as MediaPost, Digiday, MarTech and The Drum.
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