Generative AI has opened up new opportunities for creativity and efficiency in B2B marketing. In this episode of Tomorrow’s Best Practices Today, Clare Dorrian and host Bryan Kramer offer a profound understanding of how AI is reshaping our strategies while emphasizing the irreplaceable value of the human touch.

AI as a Collaborative Force

Clare’s perspective on AI in marketing is refreshingly optimistic. She views AI as an enhancer, a collaborative force rather than a replacement. “I think of AI as affectionately as my copilot, as my wingman,” Clare explains, highlighting AI’s role as a powerful ally that complements human skills. This metaphor encapsulates AI’s role in today’s marketing – a helper, not a contender.

The Indispensable Human Element

Despite the advancements of AI, Clare emphasizes the irreplaceable nature of human creativity and originality. “What we cannot afford to do, as marketing, is overlook… the opportunity to use AI in combination with your marketing team to stand out,” she states. This highlights the need for a symbiotic relationship between AI’s analytical prowess and the unique human touch in marketing narratives.

AI in Content Creation and Customer Relationships

In content creation, AI’s impact is significant but not all-encompassing. Clare notes, “Generative AI can now surface ideas and topics that can help stimulate your imagination.” However, she points out its limitations in conveying a brand’s unique voice and emotional appeal. While AI can help content creators communicate facts, structure their writing, and more, there’s no substitute for the creativity, passion, and empathy the human creator brings to the project.

Similarly, in customer relationship management, while AI can predict behaviors in, say, loyalty programs, it can’t replace the genuine human connections formed by direct interactions. Generative AI tools are great assistants for customer support professionals. And that’s where they shine—in that assistive role. By giving human agents the information they need quickly and efficiently, these tools allow humans to build relationships and foster deep connections with customers.

Automation and Human Involvement: Striking a Balance

Bryan’s perspective on automation is equally insightful. He questions, “At what point does automation become automated…and then I’m not involved?” 

“None of us want Big Brother,” Clare responds. “And I do think that is one of the fears currently existing. There’s a combination of automation and AI—there is a fear factor there that it could go too far.”

This reflects the common challenge in B2B marketing of balancing AI for efficiency while maintaining personal engagement in strategies. The human aspect of decision-making and personal interaction remains vital, especially in an era of rapidly expanding AI capabilities.

“We use automation and AI to help us point our precious dollars, our precious people, and our precious time to the things that matter most to our ideal customer profile,” Clare says. “But heaven forbid we ever did overlook the fact that it’s the human team that’s helping us navigate that journey, and it’s the human opinion that is helping us make what we hope are the right choices for our customers and our prospects.”

Harnessing the Power of AI While Retaining Human Insight

Clare and Bryan’s discussion underscores the dynamic interplay between AI and human creativity in B2B marketing. As we navigate this AI era, the challenge lies in using AI as a powerful tool without letting it overshadow our human imagination, insight, and personal touch. 

As Clare points out, we are in a phase of experimentation with AI. This journey of experimentation will define the future of B2B marketing. 

“We are very much in that hype phase,” Clare points out. “I just encourage anybody to stay focused on what business problem or pain point you are trying to solve. And encourage whoever within your organization is authoring or creating content to bear that in mind. But also, I think it’s incumbent on us not to be discouraged because we are in that hype phase, And in hype comes experimentation with experimentation, key learnings.”

The key to successfully incorporating generative AI into our marketing efforts is embracing change, leveraging AI’s capabilities, and, most importantly, retaining the human connection that resonates at the core of all marketing endeavors.

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