AI with an EQ

by Stephen Klein

400 years ago this year, in 1622, the phrase “live and let live” was written by medieval merchants to govern trade throughout Europe, North Africa and Asia Minor.

At RAD AI, we believe that 400 years is time enough to learn how to treat everyone equitably and with respect.

Today’s modern marketplace is a wondrous and sometimes even treacherous tapestry of millions of diverse and unique individuals, each of whom must be communicated with individually, respectfully, and in an inclusive manner.

The days of generalizations—segmenting target markets based on broad and generalized brackets of demographic and psychographic data—are over, or should be. It’s simply not possible for a team of marketing executives, no matter how brilliant and experienced, to create stories and narratives that can speak broadly to thousands of diverse personas in a personal, authentic, and emotionally inspiring way—until RAD AI.

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We all have a story. What segment should we force her into?

While the Holy Grail in the marketing world has always been 1:1 marketing on at scale, as far as we know, this simply, in truth, isn’t possible. But what is possible (we know because we do it), is to take vast amounts of high-quality organic content, and by using a highly sophisticated AI algorithm, to adapt that content in a highly refined and precise manner across time, channels, and media, targeting tens of thousands of different personas, each in an authentic, measurably inclusive, and impactful way.

At RAD AI, we have humbly borrowed our core guiding principle from the brilliant and iconic American writer Maya Angelou.

Picture2Maya Angelou: Our Patron Saint

She said, “I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”

Our AI EQ platform—that we affectionally call Maya—enables us to virtually guarantee we create and evolve authentic and emotional organic marketing campaigns across any digital channel.

While most people think of AI as a cold, sterile, massively complicated, and hard to understand thingamajig, we see it as a warm and friendly partner.

Smart marketing executives are very good at understanding how their customers think. But the true masters of the craft succeed in creating original campaigns that capture their customers’ hearts.

For humans, guessing how people may or may not react is virtually impossible. We know how we might feel, (I laugh at my own jokes, but my kids don’t!), but we can’t possibly represent the hearts and minds of the diverse nature of our world. Especially given today’s extraordinarily intricate and diverse marketplace. Each of us relates to reality in different ways based on who we are, how we were raised and our worldview, so we need some help.

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Today’s modern marketplace is an exquisite tapestry of diverse and unique individuals—each of whom needs to be communicated with in a respectful and inclusive manner.

As ironic as it sounds, what marketers need is a rigorous, structured, data-driven approach to communicate feelings, personally and at scale. We need to merge the right and left brain. That’s where Maya comes in.

Why don’t marketing executives focus more on authentic and emotional storytelling rather than so often on sterile, cerebral, and cliché pitches? One reason is because it’s hard to get emotion right; it can be risky, and when you don’t get it right, it can backfire. Many of us have been forced to play it safe, regress to the mean, sound like everyone else, and settle for less than what we had hoped we could achieve. I don’t know about you, but I want to improve, impact, and set the world on fire with every story I tell.

Our AI EQ can understand an infinite array of myriad personas, we don’t need to guess who will feel what. As ironic as it sounds, the data forces us to understand emotions across a intricately complex marketplace:

  • We measure authenticity by deconstructing it into its component parts including resonance, behavior, and emotion.
  • We take those insights and refine segmentation models by pinpointing the highest LTV targets.
  • We take statistically significant data and improve engagement, conversion, and ROI by learning what content (images, video, and text) should be used against which personas, and on what channels; this prescriptive data can then be applied to the rest of the marketing mix thereby creating economies of scale while informing websites, emails, and paid media.
  • In addition, we parse segmentation models and unlock what makes these high-value prospects “tick,” In short, we slice the baloney very, very thin.

We can then take the data sets (read: how real people react, behave, and feel) and test it against third-party data sources to confirm model efficacy. With a push of a button, our algorithm scans hundreds of millions of data points on web properties like Reddit, Pinterest, search, and social. The world is Maya’s oyster!

Our AI isn’t smarter than you or I. But it can read a hell of a lot faster, understanding exquisite behavioral patterns across hundreds of millions of pages of structured and unstructured data. By our estimate, Maya can read as many books in about three seconds as you or I could read in approximately 14 years—with perfect comprehension.

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It’s not easy for marketers to listen as much as we talk. Maya, our AI, is a fantastic listener. In fact, in a sense, that’s what she does. She observes, watches, listens, and helps us gain a much deeper understanding of the myriad diverse personas.

We recently created an extensive influencer and organic marketing campaign for one of the leading resorts in Las Vegas. The goal was to help our client better understand their enormous and diverse customer-base, identify their high value customers, and learn to speak more effectively (emotionally) to many individual personas in a welcoming and inclusive manner. The organic content we created, through creators and influencers not only served as a proxy for a diverse market, but also enabled us to generate volumes of client-approved and authentic content, at scale, then repurpose that content across the entire marketing ecosystem. This helped our client accrue three material benefits:

  1. They saved money by reusing stunningly authentic creative and thereby amortizing economies of scale and scope.
  2. They achieved the marketing Holy Grail by creating content that could serve both a brand-building and KPI crushing performance purpose.
  3. They baked into the system a way to unify and integrate their brand across their enormous enterprise; not an easy thing to do particularly in a highly decentralized marketing organization across multiple brands and sub-brands.

I don’t know how we could have done that without Maya. We wanted to make our client’s audience “feel” welcome, “feel” included, “feel” inspired and whenever and wherever possible, “feel” love for our brand.

This is not something we could have done using traditional AB testing, qualitative or quantitative research. “Verbal reporting” wouldn’t cut it. We needed to test our stories and narratives “in the wild,” and observe and measure actual behavior, millions of times in virtually infinite amounts of feedback loops.

In summary, we use our AI EQ to aggregate and analyze data to optimize, repurpose, identify, and adapt a variety of content types across each clients marketing mix:

  1. Create economies of scale: you develop content once, then adapt it everywhere
  2. Optimize content on an iterative basis
  3. Tailor content to each channel and persona thus improving ROI performance against KPIs
  4. Integrate your marketing mix, strengthening a high performing, integrated and bullet-proof brand across every channel including paid media, websites, landing pages, emails, blogs, and SEO

Leveraging our expertise in data acquisition and cleansing, Maya is a robust, reliable, and efficacious data universe with a great number of data sources to understand audiences, their needs and wishes, and how to best engage them.

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In the end, you need to understand her story if you want to capture her heart.

It costs the same amount of money to exclude, annoy, and bore people, as it does to include, inspire, and motivate them.

Let’s work together to tell stories that contain magic. Let’s combine the power of storytelling with the marvels of AI. Let’s use our budgets, power, and platforms to help bring much-needed light to the world.