By: Ray Day

CONTACT:

Ray Day
ray.day@stagwellglobal.com 

We wanted to share our latest consumer and business insights, based on research from Stagwell. Among the highlights of our weekly consumer sentiment tracking (fielded Jan. 27-29):

ECONOMIC WORRIES MIXED:

Today, 87% of Americans are concerned about the economy and inflation – up 1 point from last week and up from 82% in December.

  • 82% worry about a potential U.S. recession (down 1 point)
  • 81% about U.S. crime rates (up 1 point)
  • 75% about political divisiveness (up 4 points)
  • 69% about the War on Ukraine (up 1 point)
  • 66% about affording their living expenses (down 5 points)
  • 58% about a new COVID-19 variant (down 2 points)
  • 42% about losing their jobs (down 7 points)
PARENTS WANT CHILDCARE SUPPORT AT WORK:

Parents increasingly feel unsupported in the workplace and expect more childcare support from employers and the government, based on our new Parent Confidence Report with KinderCare.

  • 61% of working parents say there is a disconnect between the level of support they need and the benefits their employer provides.
  • Childcare benefits are the second most important reason for parents staying at their current job – with 18% ranking them as the most crucial benefit – behind health insurance.
  • More than half of working parents would stay at their current job if their employer provided childcare benefits, such as pre-tax benefits, emergency/backup childcare and on-site childcare.
  • 70% of parents say childcare is at a crisis point in terms of accessibility and affordability.
  • 66% believe the government should offer universal childcare to all children, from birth to kindergarten.
1 IN 10 LOOKING FOR NEW HOME, BUT WITH UNREALISTIC PRICE EXPECTATIONS:

For the fifth year in a row, most Americans (83%) say buying a home is a priority. Yet, in our latest survey with NerdWallet, high mortgage rates and a seller-friendly housing market prove to be obstacles – along with unrealistic home price expectations.

  • 11% of Americans say they plan to buy a home in the next year.
  • Prospective buyers hope to spend $269,200 on average. This is significantly lower than the typical home price of $379,100.
  • 32% of Americans feel worse about their ability to purchase a home in 2023 than in 2022 (a 7-point increase from last year).
  • The top reasons for the more negative outlook include a worsening economy (58%), higher mortgage rates (57%) and higher home prices (57%).
  • 67% of Americans say a housing market crash is imminent in the next three years.
INVESTORS RETHINK RETIREMENT PLANS:

Turbulent market conditions and rampant inflation have forced investors to consider working after retirement, based on our survey with Nationwide.

  • 69% of non-retired investors say post-retirement employment could lie ahead.
  • 44% of these investors inclined to keep working say they’ll have to supplement their retirement savings or income out of necessity.
  • 40% of non-retired investors plan to move to a different city or region after retiring, with the most common reasonings being lower cost of living (43%) and lower taxes (34%) – far ahead of being closer to family (22%).
  • 49% of non-retired investors with a financial advisor are “very nervous” about spending down their retirement savings in today’s current market environment.
LACK OF TRUST OVERSHADOWS NEW AI TOOLS:

Businesses might need to slow their roll when it comes to adopting AI tools like ChatGPT and DALL-E2, according to our latest study with AdAge.

  • 52% don’t trust AI tech.
  • 54% are familiar with generative AI tools, and nearly a fifth have used one.
  • 67% of Americans are concerned about the safety of generative AI technology.
  • Only 29% said they have not used generative AI nor are they interested in doing so.
  • Less than half (44%) say that it is easy to tell the difference between something created by AI and something created by a human.
  • 58% think things created by generative AI tools are less impressive than things created by people.
ICYMI:

In case you missed it, check out some of the thought-leadership and happenings around Stagwell making news:

 

As always, if helpful, we would be happy to provide more info on any of these data or insights. Please do not hesitate to reach out.

 

Thank you.

 

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By: Mark Penn 

Originally Published on: Barron’s

About the author: Mark Penn is chairman and CEO of Stagwell, a technology-based global marketing services firm.

Technology’s Wild West era is coming to an end. For decades, American policy has been hands-off technology to let it grow and innovate. On the eve of the dawn of artificial intelligence and the metaverse, the bad taste consumers have of social media and its divisiveness suggests that more aggressive regulation is just around the corner.

The recent round of layoffs won’t do much to staunch consumers’ fears that technology is enabling the possibility of a surveillance state. Their concerns will accelerate movement on tech privacy, censorship, anticompetitiveness, and national security legislation in the U.S. and abroad in 2023.

Half of consumers in America fear that technology will undermine their personal freedoms over the next decade, and 70% worry that tech will give more power to big corporations. The younger generations are particularly suspicious of Big Tech. Elon Musk gave some journalists access to Twitter’s records after he bought the social company. The reports they produced, known as the Twitter Files, were a damning revelation that government officials were pulling the strings behind the curtain and that the tech companies were willingly obedient much of the time.

In a recent Harvard-Harris Poll, 70% of voters now support a national law to prevent corporate censorship. The saving grace for the tech industry may be that many Democrats believe that they have been benefiting from the censorship and will oppose such a law, not understanding that what goes around comes around. They will regret blocking this legislation when they believe that they are the ones being censored. I expect this to be a significant issue in the 2024 campaign.

If Big Brother colluding with Big Tech keeps consumers up at night, the thought of TikTok being a Trojan horse for Chinese influence and spying is catnip for Congress seeking to look tough on China. Before the close of the year, leaders let loose a rash of state-based restrictions on the use of the platform by government officials. The House banned its members and staff from downloading the app. TikTok has dozens of trends working against it: Democrats and Republicans are largely aligned on the need to curb China’s influence, the Biden administration’s negotiations with TikTok have stalled, and difficult news continues to leak that employees at TikTok have misused the app, most recently to spy on journalists. The company has said it doesn’t share data with Beijing, and it fired staff members that it said were involved in the spying incident.

Voters might be less invested in the diplomatic implications of a TikTok ban than your senator, but rest assured that if the government enacts an outright ban, consumers will be up in arms. TikTok is the fastest-growing social-media platform in the U.S. and has been taking ad-market share from its legacy competitors. Expect a compromise that allows TikTok to operate but puts restrictions on how it can use and distribute information.

Beyond the U.S., data-privacy regulations will mature in 2023, meaning that global businesses will face more severe restrictions as they do business across borders. Countries have moved to enact data-privacy regulations since the implementation of the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation in 2018, and now more than 100 have rules in place, according to Forrester. By 2024, an estimated 75% of the world’s population will be covered under modern privacy regulations.

The good news is that businesses have tracked the “will they, won’t they” drama around Google’s plan to phase out user-tracking “cookies” long enough that they’ve found solutions to replace the tool—and have adjusted data-privacy standards. But a more bullish Federal Trade Commission, with a renewed focus on “harmful commercial surveillance and lax data security,” will mean that it isn’t time to rest on laurels. It’s unlikely that the U.S. will get a national standard like the proposed American Data Privacy Protection Act. But expect the FTC to oppose virtually any merger-and-acquisition activities in tech, even if the government loses its cases.

The impulse isn’t uniquely American. The EU is also taking anticompetitive action against tech giants with the adoption of the Digital Markets Act, which aims to curb the market power of dominant digital companies. We have yet to see alignment on comparable federal efforts in the U.S. but the FTC’s recent intervention into Microsoft’s Activision deal hints at more to come. The FTC will take on Google, too, for alleged anticompetitive practices, in September.

Big Tech remains a critical engine of economic opportunity and innovation. But once it began carrying news and political speech, the industry crossed a line that put it in politicians’ crosshairs. This eroded their traditionally loyal Republican free-market supporters as the Democrats were moving further to the left, taking on a more anti–big business flavor. The combination of these trends just may result in the first major year of regulation of the industry.

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By: Rafe Needleman, SVP, Technology Content, Allison+Partners

 

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Artificial Intelligence will change your job — not in five years, not next year, but now. If you’re not 100% convinced, spend some time experimenting with ChatGPT, the conversational chatbot released into open beta by OpenAI in November 2022. ChatGPT is the first free and easytouse chat product based on the groundbreaking GPT 3 Large Language Model (LLM). 

The product is a web-based chat system you can have a real conversation with. It is uncanny how well it constructs text output based on almost any input. It can answer questions, generate what appear to be original ideas and hold a decent conversation on any topic. It can also create plausible technical documentation, such as computer code and macros, and food recipes.  

If you haven’t already tried it, you should. This technology will have a huge impact on communications, marketing and advertising. It will change your job, as much as the introduction of the internet did.   

For many people, ChatGPT provides the first glimpse into what this type of AI will do for us in the future. It is both amazing and terrifying. And the revolution starts today.  

Here’s what to know to get started: 

1. You can use ChatGPT today to improve your productivity.

ChatGPT a great collaborator for generating ideas and outlines. Experiencing writer’s block? Ask ChatGPT to help get you going. Try “Outline an article about…” for starters.  

ChatGPT is also good at getting you up to speed on new topics (Try, “Explain Kubernetes”) and summarizing meetings and complex stories: Type, “Give me the bullet points for this:” and then paste in text from a transcript or story. It can even write Excel macros and more advanced computer code. As part of your existing workflow, ChatGPT can be a great starting point. But keep in mind it can’t (yet) replace all your human skills. Keep reading for why.  

2. ChatGPT lies.

ChatGPT is designed to create text that fits a linguistic model. While it is often useful and accurate, it does frequently make stuff up out of nowhere. In some instances, it gets facts completely wrong (ChatGPT seems to be convinced Russia has sent several bears into space, for example; it hasn’t!). Even if it has the correct information in its enormous corpus of knowledge, that doesn’t mean it understands it, and its output can sound completely plausible while being far off target. It’s also critical to remember ChatGPT was trained in 2021. It knows nothing about the world after that.  

Simply put, you can’t trust ChatGPT for accuracy. Always verify what it gives you. 

3. The field is evolving fast, and you need policies.

If you’re going to use this technology, it’s important to lay out clear guidelines as to how. For example, if you use ChatGPT to write an article for a client, does that need to be disclosed? How about if you use it to prepare social media copy? Let’s say you ask it to write a blog post optimized for a particular audience or SEO. Or maybe you just use it to get an article outline started. Is that something you need to tell stakeholders? 

Communications companies have already caught flack for using generative AI to create content. Publications like CNET have used ChatGPT to write articles for months, The Associated Press has incorporated some kind of AI since 2015, and even The Washington Post employed it to help write for the 2020 Presidential Election. They are all still working out how to use it and how they should publicly disclose its use for written articles.  

You must work out how you incorporate the technology into your day-to-day work in a responsible way.  Make it clear how your teams should and shouldn’t use the tool, knowing its limitations and pitfalls. And make sure you communicate this to partners and customers.  

4. Meet the “AI Native”

The capability of AI to generate original and useful creative work at scale will prove to be one of the foundational technologies of the 21st century. It will change how we live, work, learn and even think. The children born into this world will be “AI natives” and will understand the world of ideas in a different way from their parents. We can hope this technology will mostly be used to advance the way we learn and think, just as calculators changed our relationship with math. But we simply do not know yet how the developing brain will react to this type of machine intelligence. 

One thing we do need to look out for, though, is a growing digital divide exacerbated by this technology. AI is not cheap to create or run, and some populations may just not have access to it, potentially putting them at an economic disadvantage. It will be a global challenge to create a responsible framework for the distribution of this tech. 

5. Generative AI will impact your job, but it won’t kill it.

The software’s ability to create useful customized content is staggering and fundamental. It will certainly change how you work, as well as the nature of creative work at all levels and in every industry, worldwide.   

However, no matter how useful (or damaging) this technology becomes, AI will always lack imagination, vision and compassion. Adapting to this new technology will not be easy, it is still only a tool, and we can use it to reinforce our best, most human qualities. It will still need you – your humanity, your personality, your perspective and your soul.   

Be ready to change, adapt and embrace this new technology as another tool in your box of tricks. 

Those who ignore the power of AI in communications will fall behind a skills curve. It’s something we’ve already embraced at A+P as one of the many tools we use. And we help clients navigate how to make the most out of this amazing technology. Keep following this blog and our social media feeds on LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook as we continue our series on the power of AI.

Disclosure: This story was written by a human.

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By: Ray Day

CONTACT:

Ray Day
ray.day@stagwellglobal.com 

We wanted to share our latest consumer and business insights, based on research from The Harris Poll, a Stagwell agency.

ECONOMIC WORRIES MIXED:

Today, 86% of Americans are concerned about the economy and inflation – down 2 points from last week and up from 82% in December.

  • 83% worry about a potential U.S. recession (up 1 point)
  • 80% about U.S. crime rates (no change)
  • 71% about political divisiveness (down 1 point)
  • 71% about affording their living expenses (down 3 points)
  • 68% about the War on Ukraine (up 3 points)
  • 60% about a new COVID-19 variant (up 1 point)
HALF OF GEN Z SEARCH THE WEB VERSUS CALLING A DOCTOR:

More Americans know their astrology sign (66%) and credit score (58%) than their blood type (51%) or cholesterol level (20%), according to our survey with Quest Diagnostics.

  • Even fewer younger Americans know their blood type (Gen Z: 32%, Millennials: 47%).
  • Younger Americans also are relying on the internet for health information. While the majority of Americans (63%) receive health advice from healthcare professionals, only 44% of Gen Z do the same. Instead, more than half of Gen Z (52%) utilize internet searches.
  • Additionally, more than one in five Americans (22%) receive health advice from social media influencers, especially Gen Z (40%) and Millennials (39%) versus Gen X (18%) and Boomers (3%).
FREE FOOD, SUBSIDIZED COMMUTING COULD BRING WORKERS BACK TO OFFICE:

What will entice employees back to the office? It seems that free meals (63%), free beverages and snacks (58%), and subsidized commuting (46%) – especially for workers outside the U.S. – will go a long way. That said, remote working isn’t a novelty anymore. Flexibility has become a baseline expectation for many employees, according to Stagwell’s National Research Group’s new “2023: Understanding the new world of work report.”

  • We surveyed more than 4,000 people in the United States, UK, Germany and Japan to explore how workers around the world have been navigating and adapting – and what that means for businesses that want to make a flexible world work for them, their users and their staff.
  • Only 11% of respondents said they prefer working in an office full-time.
  • Yet 60% have experienced issues staying engaged while working from home, and 50% have experienced a home technical issue – with tech issues growing since the start of COVID.
  • Employees are hungry for new at-home tech, including hands-free screens (69%), interactive learning/skills development (66%), virtual assistants (59%), and 3D object identification and training (52%).
AMERICANS LOOK LOCALLY TO SOLVE HOMELESSNESS:

Americans believe it’s up to local governments to fix homelessness, based on our survey with Grid.

  • 42% believe local governments should lead in addressing homelessness, followed by state government (26%), federal (14%), private sector (11%) and individuals (7%).
  • Yet, when asked how they expected homelessness to evolve in their area in the next five years, only 17% said it would get better, 41% said it would stay about the same – with rural Americans (34% say things will get worse) having the bleakest outlook.
ICYMI:

In case you missed it, check out some of the thought-leadership and happenings around Stagwell making news:

As always, if helpful, we would be happy to provide more info on any of these data or insights. Please do not hesitate to reach out.

 

Thank you.

 

 

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By: Aaron Kwittken, Co-Founder and CEO, PRophet

Originally Published in The Drum

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When I launched PRophet in late 2020 I left behind both the ’comforts’ of agency life and the agency I founded. Fast-forward to 2023 and the road less traveled is now a digital super-highway destined to transform the PR industry as we know it, primarily using AI-driven technologies and techniques designed to make modern communicators more productive.

There’s been a lot of press lately about OpenAI’s ChatGPT. While mostly positive and exciting, some critics and naysayers claim the tool’s capabilities are overstated, while others worry that it could be the death knell of creativity by catalyzing complacency and plagiarism.

Some are comparing the rapid rise of ChatGPT to the introduction of the iPhone in 2007. One thing is certain, AI is arguably the most consequential innovation in modern history and is undeniably having a deeply profound impact on industries and facets of day-to-day life. For example, you can hire AI interns Aiden and Aiko; chat with any number of historical figures and celebrities that are living, dead, real or imagined through Character.AI; or hire a DJ through PlaylistAI. On a more serious note: thanks to researchers from MassGeneral, AI can accurately predict lung cancer risk in smokers and non-smokers up to six years into the future.

Microsoft, a major investor in OpenAI, has begun exploring ways to incorporate ChatGPT into its products, leading Google’s management to issue a “code red” and shift focus to developing AI products while laying off thousands of employees. In other words, shit is getting real.

So what does all of this mean for marketers, notably PR professionals and content creators? AI pierced the veil of doubt once upheld by a cabal of Luddites that dominated our industry. PR people who solely rely on or continue to tout their media relationships as their superpower will have the decision to make: become a fossil or become a communications engineer.

A communications engineer sits at the intersection of art and science. They create and manage narratives and drive audience engagement using data and insights to backstop their gut instinct. They build agile teams and fly-wheel tech stacks that deliver specific DIY solutions with minimal human involvement. They use software to find signals in the noise, sussing out and mitigating missiles of misinformation before they can cause harm. They are able to identify journalists’ interests before they make a pitch. And they use technology to generate first drafts of content like press releases, blogs, sticky headlines, crisis statements, bios and social posts.

They will not succumb to the once-dominant, winner-take-all industry tech heavyweights (you all know who I am referring to) who sell analog database systems replete with hackneyed, unfulfilled claims that everything can be done on one platform, from pitching to monitoring to attribution analyses. They see ChatGPT as just the beginning and are looking to continuously improve their performance and experiment with new generative AI models.

Adopting the mindset, tech stack and workflow of a communications engineer will future-proof PR professionals, agencies and brand teams alike. The future is now.

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As we look to the future of marketing, one thing is certain: Artificial Intelligence (A.I.) will play a major role in shaping the industry. From generative A.I. revolutionizing the way we approach creativity to predictive A.I. providing unprecedented insights and analytics, the potential of A.I. in marketing is vast and exciting.  

But what exactly does the next decade hold for this rapidly evolving field? We asked some of the top minds across Stagwell, including leaders from the Stagwell Marketing Cloud, PRophet, Code and Theory, Colle McVoy, Yamamoto, Concentric Health Experience, and Vitro, to share their predictions and insights on the future of A.I. in marketing.  

A.I. Won’t Eat the World – But it Will Give Consumers Time and Brands Opportunity

Mansoor Basha, Chief Technology Officer, Stagwell Marketing Cloud

“AI and ML are at the forefront of driving digital transformation across industries and will undoubtedly continue to do so. In a 2011 op-ed, Marc Andreessen observed an environment in which software was increasingly becoming king, famously stating that ‘software is eating the world.’ His observation came about a decade after the peak of the 1990s dot-com bubble as companies like Facebook and Skype were booming. Looking to the next decade, I believe that AI and ML will be eating the world, changing the way we work, live, and interact with brands. 

I predict that as AI technology changes everything around us—with things like driverless cars and more efficient, sustainable systems—consumers will have more time on their hands. This will give brands the opportunity to leverage more pointed channels to reach audiences that have more free time to participate. AI will find brands’ ideal audiences and reach consumers in the right place at the right time, especially as AR and VR go mainstream. 

And as the hype around ChatGPT and generative AI simmers down, marketing teams will become more comfortable adopting a wide range of AI tools that help them build powerful workflows that drive innovation, aid in decision making, and create new business models. ChatGPT will be an entry point for many marketing teams as they look for relevant ways to use new technologies in their day-to-day work.”
 

Enhance, Not Replace

Aaron Kwittken, Founder and CEO, PRophet

“Generative AI, while not perfect, is the needle that pierced the veil of doubt and fear amongst marketers when it comes to adopting AI technology. The current limitations are only encumbered by the lack of data needed to make it more performative. 

When paired with the right inputs, this technology will make marketers more efficient by enabling them to create base content faster and better, freeing them up for higher value tasks like editing and strategy deployment. In addition to content creation for press releases, social posts, pitches, marketing collateral, blogs, and more, I see this technology as a huge aid when it comes to legal and compliance issues, especially when working with third parties like influencers and celebrity spokespeople.

Make no mistake, though, the downsides will need to be managed. 

Generative AI may reduce the need for junior staff; could be used as an accelerant to create and spread mis and disinformation; and could make professionals more complacent, less creative, and more transactional. This is where it will be on marketers to get creative about how they use this tool to enhance their current activities, not replace them.” 

The Key Word with A.I.? Enablement

Dan Gardner, Code and Theory Co-Founder and Executive Chairman

“At the moment, where we will see AI transformation is in how we conduct business. While traditional creative shops may be focused on stunts and activations, I believe the key word here is ‘enablement,’ and how the technology allows businesses to do what they haven’t been able to do before.

Where the technology is built into systems that yield long-term results. What this looks like exactly, we still do not know for certain, but I do know that technology at its best is when it has the power to drive meaningful change in people’s lives.” 

Watch Out for A.I.’s “WordPress” Era

Yamamoto Digital Team

In the end it’s not the technology that sells, it’s the story it tells.”  

Welcome to AI as shiny new toy, with machine learning, natural language processing and open access combining to create a sandbox for early adopters. Expect showy, public activations (e.g. Ryan Reynolds reading an AI-generated script for Mint Mobile) as well as backstage experimentation. We marketers will find it hard to pass on an instant first draft of everything we do.  

Then AI enters its WordPress phase. Smaller players will benefit from “good enough” templates that auto-generate content. Meanwhile experts will game AI’s limitations to circumvent the inevitable commoditization.  

There are also threats. To brand safety. To copyright laws. To beliefs about creativity. We’ll have hard conversations about everything from unconscious bias to criminal misuse. Then, in ten years, full impact. We imagine a golden age of hyper-targeted, account-based marketing. We also predict AI depreciating the value of individual assets a la Napster killing the compact disc. Expect real people to respond with bespoke, humanistic, artisan campaigns.   

Finally, a confession. That tasty quote at the top? ChatGPT wrote it. The prompt: Crystalize the future of AI in the haunted, optimistic voice of Don Draper. How’d we do?  

“Make it More Human” 

Ben Majoy, Creative Director, Observatory

We’re in the industry of threading the needle of perfection, constantly trying to find new ways to get as close as possible to what sometimes feels like an impossible vision. Artificial Intelligence is now creating a superficial answer to that question, but we’ll soon see that creating something narratively resonant means a lot more than a “vision” coming to life.

In the same way that a perfect cheeseburger just doesn’t taste as good as a sloppy one (or any other curated vs. bespoke experience example you want to use), we’re going to see that no matter how accurate the A.I. responds to our prompt, it will never FEEL as good as the human-made. There’s humanity in what we do.

Until Artificial Intelligence can replicate nostalgia, trauma, and emotions like seeing someone you haven’t seen in ten years and picking up right where you left off, we will also feel like something is missing. We’re about to enter the era of “make it more human,” taking the place of the “I’ll know it when I see it” feedback loop.

Sturgeon’s Law

Tom Sullivan, CEO, Vitro

RESPONSE TO YOUR PROMPT, FROM CHAT GPT (195 words) 

AI is already revolutionizing marketing…and this continue over the next decade. A big step will be through the use of machine learning algorithms to analyze consumer data and make more targeted, personalized recommendations. This will likely include personalized email campaigns, targeted social media ads, and customized product recommendations on e-commerce sites.

Or course…there are chatbots and virtual assistants. These tools allow companies to interact with customers in real-time, providing immediate support and assistance. They will also be able to handle routine tasks, freeing up human customer service reps to handle more complex inquiries. As time marches on these will continue to get better (and seem even more human). 

AI will also have a major impact on content marketing, as machine learning algorithms will be able to analyze consumer data and create more effective content. This could include personalized blog posts, videos, and other types of content that are more likely to engage and convert consumers. 

Overall, the use of AI in marketing is likely to increase efficiency, reduce costs, and improve the customer experience. Whilst there may be some initial disruptions as companies adopt these new technologies, the long-term benefits are likely to be significant. 

RESPONSE TO YOUR PROMPT, FROM TOM (195 words) 

See above. It’s so generative. It’s Sturgeon’s Law (90% of everything is crap). My guess is…AI will generate at least 50% of marketing assets/thinking. It’ll probably all be pretty smart…pretty good. But when it gets to emotional storytelling, powerful creative…it’ll be just like people, generating a lot of “crap”. AI is digital. Digital is binary. Zeroes and Ones. Blacks and whites. Much of creativity comes from the muted tones, the instincts and intuitions…the random brain synapses that live in the grays. I’ve spent a lot of time playing with AI in several arts (music, writing, imagery). Some of it really interesting, and maybe even gives bits of inspiration…but so much of it is just a mashup of elements we’ve seen before. Usually…you can tell AI was the ghost in the machine, right away.  

These are relatively early days, and they are super exciting…but here are three watchouts that come to mind:  racial biases and presenting incorrect information as true fact. And…look at the “open” in Open AI. It seems to be claiming that everything is open source. So I wonder; will I will end up being a windfall for intellectual property attorneys? Time will tell.   

The InkWell is Half Full for Copywriters

 

John Neerland, VP, Group Creative Director, Colle McVoy

Over the past month, ChatGPT has hit the world, the industry and advertising copywriters in particular, like a ton of virtual bricks.  

The reaction from writers I’ve talked to has ranged from cautious pessimism to downright dread. Gallows humor abounds. One writer quipped that it might finally be time to get HVAC certified.  

But I’m choosing, for now, to see the inkwell as half full. Just like Photoshop didn’t eliminate art directors and designers, ChatGPT won’t make copywriters obsolete.   

Out of the gate, ChatGPT is only as good as the inputs it receives. And even then, ask it to write headlines for a specific product or brand and you get a list that feels more like 50s newspaper retail ads than the One Show.   

So, if it isn’t pumping out pencil-worthy lines just yet, how can copywriters harness ChatGPT (and not be trampled by it)? Some initial ways include using it to get over blank page syndrome, getting unstuck from one idea or approach, exploring new tones and styles, making copy more search friendly and speeding up the more mundane writing tasks to free up time for more interesting ones.   

Over the next decade, my hope is that copywriters find ways to leverage AI not only as a technological aid to make their work easier and more efficient, but a tool to help make their ideas bigger and their writing better than they’ve ever imagined. Or maybe that’s just what the bots want us to believe. 

A Foundational 21st Century Development

 

Allison+Partners Digital team

Generative AI is about to change our world.  The capability of AI to generate original and useful creative work at scale is both amazing and terrifying, yet it will be one of the foundational technologies of the 21st century.  There’s no question it will change how we – as communicators and consumers – live, work, learn and even think.   

Tools like ChatGPT make it easier to quickly create targeted content, both written and visual. What’s more, it will help expedite what was once a very manual (and tedious) process by customizing and personalizing content for journalists, analysts and customers. In turn, there’s every chance that many of these pitches will be received by AIs with subsequent stories likely written by them as well. (In fact, some already are – controversially.)

Yes, AI may help everyone create content, just like calculators and spreadsheets help us generate numbers. But AI cannot imagine. It cannot bring years of client experience and strategy to the table. And it cannot replace passion, empathy or excitement for our clients and their offerings. AI is just one tool, plain and simple. We can and should use it to reinforce our best, most human qualities in the many years ahead. However, it will still need you – your humanity, your personality, your perspective and your soul.  

—-

This piece is part of Stagwell’s Marketing Frontiers content series on Artificial Intelligence. Visit this page to view other perspectives and work from Stagwell’s global teams on A.I.

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Technology is reshaping sports and sports marketing just as much as the players — from loyalty NFT plays to stadium-sized augmented reality experiences. We met with brand leaders on the ground at CES 2023 from the Los Angeles Rams, Minnesota Twins, and Samsung among others to talk about the emerging tech driving innovation and sponsorship opportunities across their properties. Catch their insights below and visit YouTube to see all of our CES 2023 Content Studio interviews with top brand and business leaders on the innovation agenda for the year ahead. 

 Alexis Williams, Chief Brand Officer, NA and Fotoulla Damaskos, EVP, Strategy and Innovation, National Research Group

LA Rams on Stadium-Sized Augmented Reality Experimentation

Los Angeles Rams Chief Commercial Officer Jennifer Prince

The Rams made history this Christmas with the world’s largest augmented reality snowball fight, presented in SoFi Stadium during the Rams-Raiders game. For the Rams, it’s all about innovation on an off the field – and how brand and technology partners can reinforce their exploration of new consumer experiences. Hear from Rams Chief Commercial Officer Jennifer Prince about how the team fuels its larger-than-life fan experiences. 

Minnesota Twins on Moving Baseball into the 21st Century 

Minnesota Twins Sr. Director, Brand Experience and Innovation, Chris Iles 

A baseball team with an innovation accelerator? Yep. The Minnesota Twins want to bring always-on experimentation to the stadium, to help bring baseball into the 21st century. Hear from Chris Iles on the Twins’ mission to be the most innovative team in sport – and their experiments in AR, embodied audio, and spatial computing. 

Samsung On Powering Big-Screen Excitement for Sports Fans 

Samsung SVP and GM Harry Patz 

The Infinity Screen in SoFi Stadium is a behemoth 70,000 sq. foot digital display powered by Samsung – and just one of an array of dazzling digital out-of-home experiences Samsung helps support across sporting properties. Hear from Samsung’s Harry Patz about how advancements in screens are re-shaping in-stadium entertainment. 

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By: Ray Day

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Ray Day
ray.day@stagwellglobal.com 

We wanted to share our latest consumer and business insights, based on research from The Harris Poll, a Stagwell agency.

Among the highlights of our weekly consumer sentiment tracking (fielded Jan. 13-15):

ECONOMIC WORRIES EDGE BACK UP:

Today, 88% of Americans are concerned about the economy and inflation – up 4 points from last week and the same level as two weeks ago.

  • 82% worry about a potential U.S. recession (up 1 point)
  • 80% about U.S. crime rates (no change)
  • 74% about affording their living expenses (up 2 points)
  • 72% about political divisiveness (down 5 points)
  • 65% about the War on Ukraine (down 7 points)
  • 59% about a new COVID-19 variant (down 1 point)
  • 48% about losing their jobs (down 2 points)
THE OPPOSITE OF QUIET QUITTING:

What’s the opposite of quiet quitting? Seems that “quietly up-working” is the new thing. Our poll with Yoh signals a willingness among some employees to prove their worth and ensure job security in the face of economic and workplace downturns.

  • Today, 48% of Americans are worried about losing their jobs.
  • 29% say they are more likely to go above and beyond by taking on a new project, learning new skills or undergoing additional training to position themselves as an asset to their employer.
  • 22% are willing to work more hours than are required of them without receiving additional compensation.
  • At the same time, 23% are just as likely to consider working for a new company as staying at their current organization.
  • 29% are more likely to seek work outside their current to supplement their current income.
DO IN-OFFICE EMPLOYEES HAVE THE EDGE?:

Do in-office employees have an advantage over their working-remotely counterparts? Most Americans think they do, according to our survey with the American Staffing Association.

  • 56% believe employees who work exclusively in-office have a competitive advantage over their fully remote counterparts when it comes to raises, bonuses and promotions.
  • Despite this, less than half (48%) of workers report they are working completely in-person, 28% are working on a hybrid schedule, and 24% are fully remote.
  • 51% of women employees said they work fully on-site, compared with 44% of men.
  • Employed parents (33%) of children under the age of 18 were more likely to work a hybrid schedule, while the majority of those without minor children work on site full-time (51% versus 43% remote).
  • 46% feel pressured to work during their time off.
  • 44% would be willing to take a pay cut if it meant they had greater freedom to work remotely.
  • 40% are worried about layoffs at their company during the next six months.
KITCHEN NOW MOST LOVED ROOM IN THE HOUSE:

COVID transformed kitchens into workspaces, study halls and entertainment centers for cooped-up families – and made them the most popular room in the house, according to our survey with Bertazzoni.

  • Three out of four homeowners (75%) say they use the kitchen more than any other room in their home.
  • What are homeowners looking for in a new kitchen? 84% want sustainable products.
  • Some also want bling – with “prep kitchens” becoming one of the hottest new premium kitchen trends. Overall, 42% of homeowners saying they would want a second kitchen in their home if money were no object.
  • That jumps to 61% among those aged 18 to 44.
ICYMI:

In case you missed it, check out some of the thought-leadership and happenings around Stagwell making news:

As always, if helpful, we would be happy to provide more info on any of these data or insights. Please do not hesitate to reach out.

 

Thank you.

 

 

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By: Ray Day

CONTACT:

Ray Day
ray.day@stagwellglobal.com 

We wanted to share our latest consumer and business insights, based on research from The Harris Poll, a Stagwell agency.

Among the highlights of our weekly consumer sentiment tracking (fielded Jan. 6-8):

ECONOMIC WORRIES MODERATE:

Today, 84% of Americans are concerned about the economy and inflation – down 4 points from last week.

  • 81% worry about a potential U.S. recession (down 3 points)
  • 80% about U.S. crime rates (down 4 points)
  • 77% about political divisiveness (no change)
  • 72% about affording their living expenses (down 3 points)
  • 72% about the War on Ukraine (down 1 point)
  • 60% about a new COVID-19 variant (down 1 point)
  • 50% about losing their jobs (down 4 points)
IN-PERSON SHOPPERS RETURN:

Nearly half of Americans are looking for a bargain – and more are planning to shop in person this year versus last. Those are among the insights in our survey with DailyPay and Dollar Tree.

  • 44% are more likely to prioritize shopping for bargains in store compared to last year.
  • Overall, 67% of Americans plan to spend either the same or more in 2023 as they did in 2022 on retail purchases.
  • 73% plan to shop the same or more in person this year.
  • When it comes to Americans’ preferences regarding purchasing items in-store versus online: 81% prefer in-store for furniture, 69% in-store for home goods, 65% in-store for apparel, 65% in-store for sporting goods and 59% in-store for electronics.
NOT YOUR PARENTS’ RETIREMENT:

To most Americans, retirement is not their parents’ retirement. Rather than a destination, it’s become a new journey, based on our survey with Edward Jones and Age Wave.

  • 55% of pre-retirees and retirees ages 45 and older say that retirement today is best described as “a new chapter in life” versus the 27% who view it as “a time for relaxation.”
  • When asked how today’s retirees view their parents’ retirement, 42% said it was “a time for relaxation” and only 22% described it as “a new chapter in life.”
  • Half of retirees say they are “reinviting themselves in their retirement,” particularly women (53% versus men at 47%).
  • 72% say they are now “able to realize their hopes and dreams.”
  • At the same time, retirement isn’t without worries: Pre-retirees and retirees ages 45+ are worried about their physical health (49%), healthcare costs (34%), unexpected expenses (32%) and economic conditions (32%).
DRY JANUARY GROWS:

Dry January continues to grow in popularity – with better health and weight loss the prime motivators, according to our survey with Go Brewing.

  • 79% of Americans who consume alcohol said they considered participating in Dry January this year.
  • The top motivators include a desire to be healthier (52%), lose weight (35%) and the ability to focus better on personal or work goals (33%).

 

AIR TRAVEL TURBULENCE:

Southwest Airlines has some work to do to repair its reputation after cancelling flights during the busy holiday travel season, our survey with AdAge

  • 45% of Americans have a worse opinion of the airline since before the meltdown.
  • That dissatisfaction rises to 52% among people who have recently traveled with Southwest.
  • 41% of respondents say they are less likely to travel with Southwest now compared to before the mass cancellations
ICYMI:

In case you missed it, check out some of the thought-leadership and happenings around Stagwell making news:

 

As always, if helpful, we would be happy to provide more info on any of these data or insights. Please do not hesitate to reach out.

 

Thank you.

 

 

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“We have the technology!” Now: what will your brand do with it?  With CES 2023 in the rearview mirror, we’re looking to see how technology can provide outsized business results for CMOs while helping their brands transform society for good. The devices on the CES floor this year proved we’ll only see more convergence between marketing and tech transformation in the years to come.

Here’s what CES suggests about the year ahead for brand leaders: 

‘COME TOGETHER’ ISN’T JUST A BEATLES SONG – IT’S THE MISSION FOR BRAND ECOSYSTEM IN 2023 

More technology exists than ever before to ensure every digital touchpoint your consumer encounters conveys a consistent and authentic brand experience. Now it’s on CMOs and CTOs to collaborate closer than ever before, unleashing true connected brand experiences at scale. Wearable technology and ever-more-immersive entertainment experiences are opportunities to get this right – but challenges for brands who haven’t yet asked themselves: have you set a plan for unifying online and offline brand, marketing, product, and customer experiences? 

2023 IS THE YEAR FOR AI, BUT DON’T OVERDO IT

AI is the tech darling of 2023, and for good reason. We’ve quickly seen it evolve from basic communication and assistance on tasks to understanding your routine, predicting your behavior, and getting you a C+ on your English paper. OpenAI and other lay-consumer-friendly tools will power an AI-knowledge revolution in 2023. But while AI is great for providing creative activation energy and can get you 85% of the way there, the last 15% requires the near-impossible-to-duplicate human element.

Brands and agencies will need to responsibly blend talent + technology together in 2023 to make AI an effective addition to the marketing tech stack. 

‘COMMUNITY’ IS WHAT CONTENT WAS FOR BRANDS A DECADE AGO

From Stagwell’s own experiments in shared augmented reality, to new social platforms that let friends share content and buy and sell NFT art, brand experiences are starting to hinge on the ability to connect consumers to one another. Community is the new driver of commerce; look out for more brands using technology as a platform to create engaging, 3D and 360 marketing experience for more than one consumer. 

Live from the Stagwell Content Studio @ CES 2023

Stagwell’s Content Studio returned at CES, delivering behind-the-scenes interviews with C-Suite execs at the world’s most ambitious brands on the trends and transformations they’re tracking at CES.  

In this episode, Wells Enterprises Chief Commercial Officer Santhi Ramesh talks data anonymity, immersive experiences, and using robotics to drive automation with Stagwell President, Global Solutions, Julia Hammond.

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