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The Leadership Opportunity for Communicators to Champion AI

Mon, 10/15/2018

MSL and Publicis.Sapient's global study of 1800+ client-side marketing and communications leaders confirms that communicators are embracing Artificial Intelligence with a surprising level of confidence and optimism.

Those who lead the communications function inside companies -- in PR, advertising and marketing -- are embracing Artificial Intelligence with a surprising level of confidence and optimism. According to our new global research study of more than 1800 communication leaders at leading companies and brands around the world, the persistent AI discussion over the last year or so has hooked communications leaders. Many have pro-actively built their knowledge of the technology without the benefit of formal training provided by their companies -- much of it is likely self taught. As a result, the communicators are becoming stewards and evangelists for the new technology in their companies. They expect their companies to invest in AI in order to better develop insights, strategy, marketing and creativity. The majority also believe AI will have positive effects on the company workforce, driving an increase in jobs, though this varies across the world.

The research suggests to me the important role that communicators can play in adoption of this new technology in business. Many are what psychologists refer to as “right-brain” creative types. They can be visionaries, see the big picture and imagine the many applications of AI to business. This makes them an ideal partner to the IT department led by the Chief Information Officer that manages company plans around the AI technology and develops the applications. The logical and methodical left-brain IT leaders need the right-brain communicators as well. The result can be the ideal marriage of imaginative ideas to technical know how, setting up a sweet spot for success in AI adoption.

It’s a true leadership opportunity. Communicators can start by constructing these new and rather unexpected partnerships with those in IT that can return potential dividends back to the business.

In this scenario, AI presents a real opportunity for communications professionals to not only manage change, but also in some cases, introduce it to their firms. Our guide, Powered by AI: Communications and Marketing in the Algorithm Age, provides interesting insights on AI adoption drawn from the original research, as well as qualitative learning from company experts that have implemented AI strategies inside their firms. We are proud to have partnered with our colleagues at sister agency Publicis.Sapient who are experts in counseling companies and brands on the AI revolution. By continuing to move with high interest into the world of AI, communicators can play an important role in AI adoption, putting mastery of the Algorithm Age in their own hands.

Key findings of the research

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