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200+ Senior Marketers Dish on How They Use AI [Data]

200+ Senior Marketers Dish on How They Use AI [Data]

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Methodology

We asked 200 U.S.-based, senior-level marketing and sales professionals how they currently or plan to use AI. Learn what they revealed. Plus, get practical insights for your campaigns from WebFX Sr. leaders!

It’s no secret — artificial intelligence (AI) has captured the world’s attention with technology advances sparking a host of new applications. 

With global market revenue for AI in marketing projected to hit $107 billion in the coming years, we wanted to hear directly from marketers how they’re adopting AI into their workflows. 

Keep reading to uncover the data behind how marketers use AI — top benefits, tools, AI concerns, and more!

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Key Takeaways

  • 50% of marketers use AI for campaigns
  • 50% of marketers have concerns with AI data privacy and ethics
  • 78% of marketers are comfortable with companies using AI to personalize campaigns
  • Data analysis is the top cited use case for AI in marketing
  • ChatGPT is one of the most-used AI tools by marketing professionals

AI adoption by marketers

Artificial intelligence — using computer systems to perform tasks that typically require human intelligence — isn’t a new concept. It’s been around for decades. 

But advancements in natural language processing, chatbots, and more have made it a hot topic in recent years, especially among marketers. Still, what percentage of marketers actively use AI for their campaigns? 

To get a better understanding of AI adoption rates, we asked 200 marketers if they currently use or anticipate using AI in their marketing strategies. 

The results:

Unsurprisingly, half of the marketers surveyed already use AI for their marketing strategies, while only 9.5% say they do not plan to use AI.

What does this mean?

If AI isn’t part of your marketing arsenal, you’re missing out on a valuable opportunity. 

The benefits of AI (even early on) are so wide-ranging that marketers can almost certainly find a way to do something in their workflows more efficiently. 

Whether it’s assisting with coding, editing media, or analyzing complex data sets, we see numerous advantages of integrating AI to keep your marketing competitive and relevant for your audience, while streamlining business functions.

Trevin Shirey, WebFX’s Vice President of Business Development

Source data:

AI Use% of Marketers
Already using AI50%
Plan to use AI in the future29%
Not sure yet11.5%
Do not plan to use AI9.5%

Learn How AI Can Give Your Business a Competitive Advantage

Top AI benefits for marketing

Speaking of AI advantages — we asked those same marketers to share the top benefits of using artificial intelligence for marketing. 

Here are the top 10 benefits they reported, ranked in order of importance: 

What does this mean?

Rapid data analysis topped the list of AI benefits, speaking to the value of using AI to streamline complex marketing tasks and gain practical insights you can use for better personalization, targeting, and ultimately more conversions. 

Often, the hardest part of getting the right answer from your data is dealing with all the messy stuff like organizing, cleaning, and displaying it. Asking AI to do this can save a ton of time! 

But, here’s the catch: The data itself has to be good in the first place. Manual work is crucial for catching biased, missing, or inaccurate data. Marketers need to be careful not to rely too much on AI and know when to step in to verify the accuracy of their data analysis.

Dan Shaffer, WebFX’s Director of Marketing Operations

Source data:

Top AI benefits, ranked:

  1. Ability to analyze data quickly
  2. Automating marketing processes
  3. Increased personalization and user experience
  4. Improving decision-making
  5. More targeted ads
  6. Better insights into customer behavior
  7. Generating leads more efficiently
  8. Increased customer loyalty
  9. Enhanced customer engagement
  10. Optimizing campaigns for better ROI

Explore Data Activation Services From WebFX

AI use cases for marketing

Next, we dug a bit deeper into specific AI use cases for marketing — here’s the percentage of marketers that use AI for each strategy. 

What does this mean?

Again, data analysis rose to the top of the list. Respondents shared a host of AI use cases, though, from content creation and customer support to campaign personalization and predicting consumer behavior. 

As Trevin pointed out, AI really does have a wide array of benefits for companies in any industry. So, when it comes to getting started with AI, he added: 

I recommend marketers playing around with AI to figure out what a good sweet spot is for them. What are some skills that you are lacking in where AI could support? What are some tedious tasks that could be automated or analyzed through AI? 

We tend to look at new trends as being ‘all in’ or ‘all out’ but I think there is a lot of gray area with AI where you can use it to supplement all of the human-led and people-focused marketing efforts that we all are working on. There are certainly some opportunities for quick wins now and maybe even more down the road!

Source data:

Strategies% of Marketers Using AI for Strategies
Data analysis52.5%
Content creation44.5%
Customer service/support38.5%
Social media listening and brand awareness31.5%
Generating campaign ideas and inspiration29.5%
Target audience selection29%
Translating text into different languages26.5%
Creating images25.5%
Campaign personalization25%
Predicting consumer behavior22%
I do not currently use AI for marketing21%
Other1%

Top AI tools for marketing

Next, we got the scoop on the top AI tools in our marketers’ arsenals. 

By far, ChatGPT was the most-reported tool, with 34.5% of respondents claiming it’s part of their workflows. 

Other tool mentions, broken down by category, include: 

Content:

Customer support/chat:

Data Analysis: 

Design: 

General/other:

SEO:

What does this mean?

Interestingly, AI content tools received the most mentions, despite marketers reporting data analysis as a top AI use case, perhaps highlighting a gap in the adoption of AI tools for more advanced marketing functions. 

As we see from the data, AI content tools are easy to integrate into your workflow and can aid with everything from research to outlining and writing website copy. Advancements in natural language processing have brought many content tools to the forefront, too.

ChatGPT and other LLMs are incredible tools that allow marketing teams to develop better campaigns that improve results. 

We’re just at the beginning of understanding the potential use cases, but some of the biggest wins thus far have been in AI-supported content strategies. AI can help us discover perspectives that more fully meet customers’ needs and human marketers can execute on these insights.

Chris Varner, WebFX’s Lead Consultant, Results Innovation

Keep in mind, though, to make your content stand out online (and rank in search results), you’ll need to include a fresh, unique perspective outside of generic, AI-generated text.   

As a lifelong reader and writer, I still believe strongly in the value of human discretion, critical thinking, and creativity when it comes to the written word, and I don’t believe that these things can ever be entirely replaced by AI

However, there are many great ways that AI can augment the writing process, by helping identify trends or pull together information that speeds up the research process.

Adrienne Wolter, WebFX’s Director of Earned Media

Learn More About Content Marketing Services From WebFX

Concerns with using AI for marketing

Though AI provides a host of benefits for marketers, they also noted concerns about using artificial intelligence — data privacy and ethics topping the list. 

What does this mean?

As the data shows, data privacy is one of the top concerns reported with using AI for marketing. Especially in the era of Google’s third-party tracking updates and Apple’s Mail Privacy Protection, people are more aware of how their data is collected and used in marketing campaigns. 

Regarding the potential biases of AI content, Adrienne shared

The biggest concern I have here is that this technology is consensus-based, so it is possible for biases to emerge, and even when the information is all factually true it can create a sense of regurgitating everything else without adding anything new. 

So it is the responsibility of the human controlling the machine to fact-check, to make inspired connections, and to uphold the sense of originality and value that is uniquely human. 

Source data:

AI Concerns% Marketers Concerned
Data privacy or ethics49.5%
Inaccuracies or biases with AI content43%
Cost of using AI tools35%
I do not have any concerns about using AI for marketing20.5%
Other0%

Perception of AI for personalized marketing — creepy or helpful?

With marketers citing data privacy as a top concern, we wanted to know — are they comfortable with other companies using AI to reach them with custom-tailored campaigns?

According to the overwhelming majority, yes. 

What does this mean?

While AI isn’t a substitute for authentic connections, it makes the process of reaching and engaging with your target audience easier, helping you build more lasting relationships that drive repeat purchases.

A whopping 77% of consumers choose, recommend, and pay more for brands that offer personalized experiences. So, using AI to personalize your campaigns offers a huge advantage. 

That said, it’s still important to maintain your brand’s “human” element to create relationships that foster loyal, happy customers

We’ll wrap up with a word of advice from Trevin:

Marketing is really about building connections with people, and the person-to-person connection and the soul in marketing is something that AI can’t fully replace. But I see opportunities to help make that process of creating those connections more efficient.

Source data:

Comfortable with companies using AI to personalize campaigns to you?% Marketers
Yes78%
No5.5%
Not sure16.5%

Level up your marketing campaigns with AI insights and expert advice from WebFX

As the data shows, AI has a host of practical applications for streamlining campaigns and enhancing results. 

If you’re not already using AI for your marketing, what are you waiting for? We’ve got 500+ experts ready to help! 

Check out our custom AI solutions, complete with insights from our MarketingCloudFX technology suite (exclusive to WebFX clients), and connect with us to learn more! 

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