Shy About AI – Marketers Are Reluctant to Admit They’re Using It

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While the marketing industry is rapidly incorporating AI technologies into its practices, those doing so are reluctant to admit it, according to data recently released by SOCi’s AI Marketing Transformation Index.

Even though 65 percent of marketers say they’re integrating generative AI, and 45 percent are stepping up their investments in AI technologies, 52 percent of participants expressed concern over letting their customers know about it.

According to the study, 39 percent of marketers who had reservations about communicating their AI usage were “somewhat concerned,” and 13 percent reported feeling “greatly worried” about the possible negative repercussions it could have on their customer base.

“It’s clear that while we navigate the benefits of AI, we must also carefully manage its perception among consumers,” said Monica Ho, CMO of SOCi, a valid concern considering the high level of consumer distrust that persists toward AI in general.

While consumers are becoming more familiar with AI, marketers are taking an early lead in understanding and incorporating AI tech. The study shows that a full 82 percent of marketers in the survey are familiar with ChatGPT, Bard, MidJourney and others, and 51 percent are using AI technologies “often.”

“Recognition of generative AI tools among marketers is impressively high,” says Ho, “which is a testament to the rapid evolution and integration of gen AI in marketing.”

The majority of marketers in the study – 32 percent – are using AI for personalized marketing, with 25 percent using it for “routine tasks,” followed by 22 percent citing content development as their biggest use for AI, and 19 percent are using it for data analysis.

According to Ho, “there’s a common misperception that generative AI is solely about automation and content creation. While those areas hold significant potential impact, the real game-changer lies in personalized marketing,” which could include interactive experiences that engage directly with consumers.

“Efficiency is clearly improving through the use of these tools,” Ho states. How then will marketers balance the tight rope of increasing AI use without losing customer trust toward their brand? Read more here.

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