Artificial intelligence (AI) will not find mainstream use among marketers until at least 2021. This is according to a new Marketing Foresight research report from Episerver, the company transforming digital experiences.

This survey highlights the fact that while marketers are investing more and more in technology, some of the basics are being missed. Many marketers still don’t have a responsive website or a clearly defined mobile strategy and, of those that do, many more are not providing a seamless omnichannel experience.

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Local digital transformation specialist Bluegrass Digital says the survey of over 100 in-house marketers asked marketers which technologies they are currently using and when they intend to incorporate new technologies into their marketing strategy and stack.

Bluegrass Digital CEO Nick Durrant says the survey found that, despite the abundance of AI-driven marketing tech, more than 60% of marketers had no plans to incorporate artificial intelligence before 2021.

“In contrast, 57 percent of marketers believe they will have incorporated augmented reality (AR) by 2020 and 58 percent will be using virtual reality (VR) as a key part of their marketing approach by the same year.”

With regards to more pressing technologies, 60 percent of marketers expect to deploy a customer service chatbot by the end of 2019. For marketers involved in the retail industry, 71 percent intend to adopt one-click purchasing by the end of 2019, while 54 percent plan to accept virtual currency payments by 2022.

The use of drones will move to the mainstream by 2023 as, for the first time, more than half (57 percent) of marketers will incorporate these into their strategy.

“It’s promising to see that so many marketers are planning to evolve their strategies through the adoption of new technology over the coming years. However, they must not forget about those technologies that ultimately enhance their day-to-day work,” he adds.

Episerver ’s 2018 Reimaging Commerce report, based on a global survey of more than 4000 online shoppers, revealed that 43 percent of UK consumers do not believe that brands do enough to personalise their online shopping experiences – almost 10 percent higher than the global average.

Durrant says aspects of the shopping experience that also rank highly as ‘must-haves’ include easy-to-use product search functions, ample information about products and returns, and personalised recommendations.

“It is crucial that the fundamental elements of marketing aren’t lost whilst trying to invest in the latest tech. New technologies should be deployed to support a great customer experience and not merely for the sake of keeping up with the trends,” he concludes

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