Raise your hand if when AI entered the everyday home and workplace, all you could think about was Disney Channel's Smart House and the AI system overtaking the family and losing it? Or perhaps the 2001 movie AI that was just a little bit creepy? Anybody?
We've more than entered an age of AI where it doesn't just exist in the plot of sci-fi movies. People are using AI products and services in every part of their daily lives - both at home and at work.
We're at the point where just being an AI company isn't a standout. Nearly every tech company is now claiming they're an AI company and are working to rebrand in order to compete. According to Harvard Business Review, companies are looking at every area in which they can implement AI technologies. And research by Tractica shows AI spending is forecasted to grow to as much as $37 billion by 2025.
If Everyone's Doing It, How Do You Stand Out?
If you want to stand out and increase your customer's lifespan longevity, you need to focus on one thing: your brand.
Your brand is equally as important as the quality of your products and services. Perhaps even more so in heavily saturated industries.
Branding comes down to your customer's perception of your company. You may be portraying your company values and the identity in your messaging but perception is built-in action.
When it comes to branding as an AI company, you need to ensure your target customers have higher expectations of you then they do of your competitors. Then you need to meet and exceed those expectations in the user experience.
The User Experience
How your company is perceived has everything to do with the user experience.
When people think of Google, they think something between Google will one day rule the world and Google has all the answers.
Apple has locked in a reputation of innovation, quality, and user-friendly. Apple's AI Siri reinforces this identity.
Amazon's Alexa is thought of as an instant answer, instant order, instant music, instant assistant reinforces Amazon's brand reputation of fast delivery and quality customer service.
These identities don't come about because the company tacked a tagline and a logo together. Rather at every interaction, they've with the company those expectations are met.
Make AI Relatable
One thing to remember about artificial intelligence is that it can appear as scary and intimidating to the public. They see it as a threat to their jobs, an invasion of privacy, and a sign of a robotic future. Your brand and marketing strategies need to tackle this problem head-on. If they're not of the techy breed, they probably have trouble wrapping their head around AI and understanding it.
That's why it's vital that your marketing demonstrates how AI will benefit people and enhance their daily lives. Microsoft has done this through advertisements that show successful AI initiatives and how they work. IBM has done this by giving their platform a persona - Watson - and showing examples of "Watson at Work."
Connecting Expectations and Experience
A customer lands on your website through your message of being a customer-first company, that customer needs to
- Be able to find what they're looking for immediately.
- Have phenomenal customer service throughout.
The key to remember here is customers will pay more when they have a positive user experience and their expectations are met. This is probably even more important for an AI company because people expect any AI technology to be "smart."