From automation to inspiration, AI is redefining advertising for good

By Jason Juma-Ross - Head of Technology and Innovation, Meta | Sponsored
Jason Juma-Ross.

If there’s one topic that everyone has an opinion on, it’s AI.

Five years ago generative AI still seemed over the distant horizon, the domain of engineers and scientists. But over the past two years, it’s become far from niche, and led to an explosion of self-proclaimed ‘experts.’ 

But for the advertising industry what does this all mean? And how will it change the way we operate and work?

AI is automation. It works to enhance our intelligence and capabilities, helping us do things better, faster, and cheaper than before. Put simply, we’ll just be able to do more. 

But if you think we’re in the thick of it now, you’d be wrong - we’re only on the cusp of this revolution. The world’s AI power is doubling every 18 months, equating to 100x growth over 10 years. 

This rapid evolution may intimidate some people, and it's right to be wary of new technology, but we’ve seen similar patterns play throughout history.

Think about something as ubiquitous as music. All of us access millions of songs with the tap of a button on our phones - a far cry from the days where music was reserved to those who could afford a seat in a concert hall. But this change didn’t just occur naturally - it was the invention of the phonograph which brought about this rapid democratisation of music, which is now something, I’m fairly confident in saying, we don’t want to live without.

The same can be said about the printing press for the spread of information, the car for mass transit and on and on we can go.

That’s what AI can be, and in our industry, there are four key fields - creative, media, analytics, and customer experience - that are ripe with opportunity.


For creative work, AI can enable higher quality, more volume, better personalisation, all at lower costs. It’s now an 'and game' not an 'or game.' 

For example, ESPN Australia wanted to promote their basketball brand platform ahead of the NBA playoffs in 2024. They collaborated with Now We Collide on a social media-led video campaign targeting basketball fans, along with a 60-second hero spot during the Super Bowl. 

So far, pretty straightforward. But Now We Collide used AI tools to deliver a unique look and feel based on a mixture of projection mapping and VFX to showcase some of the biggest plays, from the biggest stars. The level of concepting and VFX production would have been prohibitively time-consuming and much too expensive to produce without the GenAI tools.


That’s just one example of how AI can revolutionise creative work. Another is how AI can generate countless variations of an ad, each tailored to different audience segments, in different geographies, for different products, thus increasing relevance and engagement. 


AI can predict which customers are most likely to convert, optimising ad spend, maximising ROI, and eliminating a large chunk of the manual processing associated with media planning, and free up time for new initiatives and strategic work. 

AI can find the highest likelihood of converting customers, can automate complex campaign structures, run experimental feedback loops in real-time, and achieve results that exceed manual targeting. It can transform how agencies approach media strategy altogether - perfecting the art of ensuring the right message is delivered to the right person at the right time.

Research and Analytics

AI can mine huge troves of unstructured data at a speed and scale previously only possible with the most advanced data science capabilities. From social media data, customer reviews, and other sources that help indicate trends and sentiment - AI can help fuel a deeper understanding of consumer behaviour, helping marketers keep up with consumer preferences.

Customer Experience

There are 600 million conversations between people and businesses on Meta’s platforms each day, discussing anything from accounting software to games. People want to connect with businesses in personalised and instant ways and generative AI can help any business, particularly smaller businesses provide experiences like chat bots, and customer service at scale. 

AI-powered chatbots can provide personalised recommendations, answer queries instantly, and even handle transactions, creating a seamless customer experience. AI can tailor the entire customer journey, from initial contact to post-purchase support, creating highly personalised experiences that increase conversion, satisfaction and loyalty.

As AI becomes more powerful, it also becomes cheaper and more abundant. We are far from being done exploring the research space, and we are far from topping out in the application space. The future is very clearly going to be what we all build. 

If you’re of the opinion that AI is something to be avoided, I would encourage you to instead think about the printing press, the camera, the phonograph. These are all examples of technological progress that transformed their industries, and that now are so deeply embedded in our society, we would struggle immensely without them. 

Lean into AI, because we can all benefit. And at some point in the near future, just like how we now regard our phones, lightbulbs and planes, we may wonder how we ever lived without it.

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