Posted by - Whitestone International

As brand builders who put audiences and data at the heart of everything we do, our role is to make data science central to our approach – an approach that uses AI to be more insightful, more accurate and to have more time to be creative – combining Artificial Intelligence with Human Intelligence to get the most out of both.”

If AI is the science behind machines imitating human intelligence – simulating our ability to learn, improve, solve problems, recognise patterns, understand languages, discern visuals, perceive sentiment and so on – how is ‘real’ human intelligence still of value?

From advancements in AI, including neural networks, machine learning and deep learning, the world has benefited from cutting edge innovations, increased productivity, better personalised offerings, savings in time and cost, big data insights, etc. And by its very nature, AI has been developed to act on what it learns. But until AI is capable of turning data and learnings into fully functioning strategies, it’s our job as humans to connect the dots and activate the insights in ways that turn the technology into business, social and cultural benefits – to come up with the ideas!

To us, ideas mean strategic creativity, based on originality, innovative thinking and irreplicable experience. But ideas also come from using cognitive technology alongside human ingenuity to Identify, Develop, Enhance & Accelerate (I.D.E.A.) value for brands and investors using AI:

Identifying audience and brand opportunities, insights and trends – quickly and without the need for time-consuming and costly traditional research
Developing robust brand, identity and communications strategies – customised to reflect the relatable and aspirational values, interests and behaviours of specific audiences
Enhancing resources and human ability – more efficiently and effectively targeting, engaging and growing primed and predisposed audience sectors
Accelerating delivery, activation and return on investment – whether building a new brand or repositioning to respond to new data, audience and market trends and business objectives

AI v. Humans

With AI booming and global spending on cognitive and AI systems set to reach $57.6 billion in 20211, we are being conditioned to believe that one day it will be the norm for robots to work alongside us as ‘cobots’, or even replace us! For example, intelligent agents and robots could replace as much as 30 percent of the world’s current human labor by 20302. However – and luckily for those of us who work in building brands– AI will never fully replace the need for human expertise, unique talent and creative flair; and we, as strategists, analysts and creatives, have a fundamentally pivotal role in the interpretation of AI findings. The real value of data is in it’s interpretation, rather than the data per se.

In fact, as AI becomes more sophisticated, human analysis of the data and insights is ever more critical in optimising the results of the machine learning. And with 59% of organisations naming a ‘shortage of data science talent’ as the primary barrier to realising value from their big data technologies3, those who bring the data to life hold the key to making a true impact on business and social success.

Artificial Intelligence + Human Intelligence
As brand builders who put audiences and data at the heart of everything we do, our role is to make data science central to our approach – an approach that uses AI to be more insightful, more accurate and to have more time to be creative – combining Artificial Intelligence with Human Intelligence to get the most out of both. For instance, AI can be used to quickly and efficiently identify patterns from the smallest of differences in big data that in fact indicate significant shifts in audience behaviours. But it is with human intelligence that we can interpret these nuances into big brand decisions.

What is essential in these scenarios is context. For example, brands represent a combination of many different human values, emotions, behaviours and messages that all come together to form an opinion in the eye of the beholder. These are not necessarily things that can be measured, compared and learned from data alone. They require interpretation in the context of the entire brand experience. This is what we call Brand Intelligence.

A more intelligent way to build brands

We use a deep and precise brand modelling platform that applies Brand Intelligence alongside Market Intelligence, Audience Intelligence and Creative Intelligence – all underpinned by insights from Artificial Intelligence. This enables us to build brands based on the perfect balance of big data, machine learning and human expertise to exponentially increased their value and impact. The most impressive skills are in contextualising data, finding relationships and modelling data-driven brands for specific audiences. And together they accelerate application, engagement and growth.

Our Intelligence Model evolves AI data into tangible brand decisions, tools and outcomes. We create and evolve brands into propositions that resonate with audiences, and we build and deliver robust strategies across the following essential constructs of any successful brand.

Brand Provenance and Story:
Audiences buy from brands with a strong positioning, provenance and story, all of which must be based on tangible themes, trending topics and authentic points of conversation. By interpreting AI insights across these areas of interest, we use our Brand Intelligence Model to position or reposition brands in an identified sweet spot that is reinforced through a fully aligned strategy, identity and branding.

Brand Personality:
Audiences engage with brands and personalities they trust, relate to and aspire to. With intimate knowledge of an audience’s behavioural traits, needs and values, we interpret psychometrics, personality types and consumer archetypes to develop a refined brand personality, tone of voice and messaging that will engage specific audiences.

Brand Experience:
Sustained success is built over time from the cumulative experience of every brand touchpoint. And this overall experience must be built on both long-term foundational themes that create loyalty and up-to-date trending topics that reignite engagement. Using AI insights to determine the interests and passions that shape an audience’s desired experiences, we create more intelligent marketing campaigns, activations and ongoing brand touchpoints that deliver these experiences over and over again.

Brand Influence:
Going beyond personal identity and individual value, we determine wider social connections and a sense of cultural belonging. By creating authentic points of engagement, we build a brand’s influence to accelerate audience behaviours, such as sharing, advocacy and purchase. This can include positioning and presenting the brand as a broader lifestyle or community proposition; or using affinity data to find the right partner, sponsor, celebrity ambassador or social media influencer.

Brand Purpose:
With the majority of global consumers buying from companies that take a stand on issues they care about4, we use AI data and insights to reflect current choices, conversations and causes when delivering a purpose beyond profit. Using our Intelligence Model, we create purpose-driven propositions that align environmental, social and community narratives with trending audience sentiment to successfully reflect their own values and beliefs.

Identifying, Developing, Enhancing & Accelerating Value

It is clear to see that AI is disrupting the way humans interact with data and changing the nature of decision-making. But it is the way in which it is amplifying and boosting human ideas and strategies that is truly revolutionising the way we work.

So whilst AI can deliver insights that would take years for humans to track, measure and decipher, there are still infinite ideas that will never come to light without human interpretation and experience. Exponentially better together, the combination of Artificial Intelligence and Human Intelligence is unbeatable in delivering speed, depth of insight, nuanced interpretations and unique inspiration. And when applied to Market Intelligence, Audience Intelligence, Brand Intelligence and Creative Intelligence, they create a much more sophisticated, vigorous and intelligent way to build brands.

For further insight into how to integrate AI and Brand Intelligence, please contact us.


1 https://www.idc.com/itexecutive/research/topics/ai
2 https://www.mckinsey.com/featured-insights/future-of-work/jobs-lost-jobs-gained-what-the-future-of-work-will-mean-for-jobs-skills-and-wages#
3 https://research.aimultiple.com/ai-stats/
4 https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20181205005061/en/Majority-Consumers-Buying-Companies-Stand-Issues-Care