The AI Marketing Canvas: A book review by Bob Modrris

The AI Marketing Canvas: A Five-Stage Road Map to Implementing Artificial Intelligence in Marketing

Raj Venkatesan and Jim Lecinski
Stanford Business Books (May 2021)

How to “supercharge your brand’s consumer journey” with high-impact personalization that consumers now expect

In The Innovation Ultimatum, Steve Brown explains how and why six strategic technologies will reshape every business in the 2020s. For brand managers, these technologies can be a company’s best friends or worst enemies.

They include  artificial intelligence (AI); sensors and the Internet of Things (IOT); autonomous machines — robots, cobots, drones, and self-driving vehicles; distributed leaders and blockchains; virtual, augmented, and mixed reality; and other technologies that connecting everything and everyone, such as 5G networks and satellite constellations.

I agree with Raj Venkatesan and Jim Lecinski: Brand managers “have to figure out how to leverage AI to serve customers better. Why? Because the resources required to respond to this new demand economy — the demand for one-on-one personalized marketing — far outstrips human (analog) capacity.”

These are among the questions that Venkatesan and Lecinski help their reader to answer:

o What is the most significant marketing challenge and what are the major dos and don’ts to keep in mind when responding to it?

o What are the core principles and defining characteristics of the Customer Relationship Mental Model?

o There are five stages of AI and machine learning in marketing. Why complete Foundation before Experimentation?

o Experimentation before Expansion?

o Expansion before Transformation?

o Transformation  before Monetization?

o What are the most serious mistakes that brand managers make when attempting to complete the Monetization stage? How best to avoid those mistakes?

o When planning and then launching change initiatives to achieve high-impact AI and machine learning in marketing, how best to avoid or overcome what James O’Toole so aptly characterizes as “the ideology of comfort and the tyranny of custom”?

Raj Venkatesan and Jim Lecinski provide an abundance of valuable information, insights, and counsel in this volume, just about everything brand managers need to supercharge their brand’s consumer journey with high-impact personalization. This is a relationship their consumers now expect and often demand. It remains for brand managers to select whatever is most relevant to the given situation. That is, fill their “canvas” in ways and to an extent necessary to implementing AI in marketing.

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