Data, AI, and Social Media: A Winning Equation for Marketing Success

Hyder Jaffari
August 25, 2023
Data, AI, and Social Media: A Winning Equation for Marketing Success

Traditional marketing methods have included newspapers, radio, TV, and outdoor advertising. Their most apparent drawbacks have been the inability to target audiences based on demographics, interests, and behavior. These methods also do not effectively provide data on reach, engagement, and conversions.

Social media advertising allows marketers to use highly granular metrics to build campaigns and deliver relevant and timely ads. With the immense scope of available data, tools for visualization have become integral to marketing efforts, providing insights and actionable reports.

The introduction of AI could provide the exact targeting precision every marketer dreams of. Combining all these elements would allow you to build relevant, targeted, scalable, and highly optimized marketing campaigns that consistently deliver exceptional results.

How it Started

For almost 30 years, online marketing has evolved from the first ad for AT&T in 1994, which appeared as a banner on HotWired, a tech news website that stated, "Have you ever clicked your mouse right here? You will."

With over 4.6 billion active internet users globally, online advertising has vast potential.

  • The projected global spend on advertising in 2022 is said to have reached approximately US$ 781 billion, representing a growth of 7.9% from 2021, as forecasted by Zenith.
  • Digital advertising was the most prominent medium, accounting for 55.5% of total ad spending.
  • The ability to harness granular data has resulted in a ~ 30% increase in engagement rates.

Combining data visualization and AI, let's see how you, as a business, can take advantage of this to market your products and services to potential customers.

Marketing Assisted by Data Visualization

Businesses can use data visualization in social media marketing to help in several ways, including:

  • Understanding your audience: By visualizing your social media data, you can better understand your audience, their demographics, interests, and behavior. This information allows you to create more targeted and relevant content and campaigns. Some key data types include age, gender, location, hobbies, and occupation.
  • Measuring the success of your campaigns: You can use data visualization to measure the success of your social media campaigns by tracking metrics such as reach, engagement, and conversions to optimize your campaigns and improve your return on investment (ROI).
  • Identifying trends: Visualizing your social media data can also be used to identify trends and adapt your marketing strategy to meet the changing needs of your audience, measured by follower growth, engagement, and sentiment.
  • Creating engaging content: Visualizations can also assist in producing exciting content that is more likely to be shared and interacted with, like infographics, charts, and graphs that are eye-catching and informative.
  • Building relationships with influencers: Data visualization is an excellent tool for building relationships with influencers. Visuals, in this instance, can include tracking their social media activity and identifying opportunities to collaborate.

To get started with implementing data visualization into your social media marketing efforts, here are a few steps you can follow:

  1. Define goals: What do you aim to learn from your data visuals? For example, you can understand your audience better or showcase campaign performance.
  2. Use relevant metrics: Use the metrics that align with your goals. It could be conversion rates, traffic data, or audience demographics.
  3. Select visualization format: There are many ways to show your data insights, be it images, infographics, or video, as long as it effectively communicates the data to the viewers.
  4. Deliver the narrative: Organize your data so your audience can easily understand and engage.
  5. Test and iterate: Monitor the performance of your visuals and adjust your strategy depending on audience feedback.

AI's Revolutionary Role

Data visualization tools have already been adopted mainly by businesses to assist decision-making. Data has shown that companies with the best analytic capabilities outperform the competition. One statistic states that companies using data visualization tools are five times more likely to make decisions 'very frequently.'

AI can predict which content will resonate most with a particular audience segment. This data can then be visualized for a quick and comprehensive understanding. This fusion enhances decision-making, enabling marketers to refine strategies on the go.

Some of the more common ways that AI and visuals of data analysis are being combined for marketing are:

  • Personalized content: Businesses can reach their target audience based on interests, demographics, and past behavior.
  • Customer service: We already see that AI is answering many of our customer service queries so that representatives can focus on other important tasks.
  • Sentiment analysis: By identifying social media posts to check for negative, positive, or neutral sentiments, AI and data visualization can offer marketers an overview of customers' feelings towards their products or services.

In 2023, Generative AI, a type of artificial intelligence that can create new content, such as text, images, or other media, using generative models, is a rapidly developing field with many potential applications. Generative AI models learn the patterns and structure of their input training data and then generate new data with similar characteristics.

Some of the benefits of generative AI include:

  • Create new and original content
  • Automate tasks currently done by humans, such as writing, generating images, or creating music
  • Personalize content for each individual
  • Generate synthetic data to train machine learning models

AI and Ads

Meta Ads announced in May 2023 the introduction of the AI Sandbox and how they're using AI to improve the performance of ads for businesses.

The AI Sandbox will act as our testing playground for early versions of new tools and features, including generative AI-powered ad tools. - Facebook

As part of its Sandbox, Facebook is building tools to make ad text more engaging and image tools to improve ad creativity.

  • Text Variation: Generates multiple versions of ad text.
  • Background Generation: Creates background images from text inputs.
  • Image Outcropping: Adjusts creative assets to fit different aspect ratios across multiple surfaces.

By combining AI and data visualization, businesses can better understand their customers, create personalized and engaging content, and improve the overall effectiveness of their social media marketing campaigns.

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