artificial intelligence, ai, customer journey, customer behavior, discovery, marketing, prospecting

For today’s digital marketers, finding the “right” customers is as critical as it is challenging. The “right” customers are more than the loyal shoppers who repeat purchases. These are consumers that have built a deep-rooted relationship over time with a brand based on positive marketing experiences, mutually-aligned values, and view the brand as more than just a product or service provider. And as customers become more complex in their digital behaviors, identifying and connecting with these customers becomes a bigger hurdle than ever before.

Marketers looking to clear this hurdle don’t need to rely on past techniques to solve present and future challenges. Rakuten Marketing has developed a new product to reach the right customers of today and tomorrow, Rakuten Marketing Prospecting, a proprietary custom audience-creation feature that is integral to solving customer acquisition challenges. Prospecting utilizes artificial intelligence combined with Rakuten ecosystem data to enable marketers to serve relevant, engaging ads that influence consumers to become new, and eventually loyal, customers.

Relevance with Artificial Intelligence in Prospecting

There is a common misconception that AI will replace the “human touch” in marketing with something automated and robotic. The fear of irrelevant digital experiences haunts marketers and plagues them with concern over using this new technology. It’s been a conversation as old as AI itself, but that perspective is a myth. Rather than AI replacing the relevant experience with an irrelevant one, marketers should see AI for what it is – a powerful tool that enhances a marketing experience that customers not only love and crave, but also expect. In short, marketers have an opportunity with AI they couldn’t have achieved at scale before: to deliver relevant advertising experiences to new customers, while also growing and expanding a brand.

This scale comes from the power that artificial intelligence is able to deliver. In essence, AI can address issues, solve challenges, and optimize both of these at a scale that humans cannot. This scale means marketers are able to connect with tens of billions of consumers in a relevant manner. Additionally, AI has the ability to predict what a good marketing experience would look like for every individual consumer. Thus, not only are consumers getting an experience they want to, they’re getting it at a more personal level. That is the true power of AI in Prospecting –a smarter, savvier and more forward-thinking way for marketers to provide relevant experiences.

Prospecting with AI and Data

Built on AI and fueled by data, Prospecting empowers marketers to pinpoint audiences they wouldn’t otherwise have found. Standard “look-alike” modeling finds the obvious. Prospecting digs deeper and works smarter to find people whose interests align with the brand, who demonstrate a propensity to purchase online, and are likely to connect with a brand’s core values to become loyal customers.

In short, artificial intelligence understands people’s online behavior and derives greater meaning from how their actions translate into likes, preferences, beliefs and values. Rather than mirror existing customers, Prospecting’s AI acts as a trusted friend who knows enough to recommend a potential customer that might not have even been on the marketer’s radar. It helps find those consumers and then puts the brand in front of them with ads that are helpful and relevant, and that can turn into a positive purchase decision.

Click here to learn more about Rakuten Marketing Prospecting.