Black Friday has established itself as one of the most important dates for commerce and many retailers are starting to prepare for the holiday earlier and earlier, with big brands looking at the date as early as the first quarter of the year or even before that. Everything needs to be planned and every detail counts: product strategy, partnerships, logistics and advertising.
To manage all this complexity in communication, retailers have at their disposal advanced tools made available by big techs, which allow a better understanding of the public, demand and previous performance, information that enables sustainable planning. The benefits brought by Artificial Intelligence offer strategic advantages such as improving forecasts, personalizing the customer experience, competitive pricing, optimizing recommendations, among others. Artificial Intelligence is already incorporated for many purposes and the trend now is for its participation in future solutions to intensify.
Predicting behavior and demand on special dates was challenging for a while and adapting advertising tools to sudden changes was more difficult. In the last 10 years, however, the incorporation of AI mechanisms has brought improvements in the quality of predictions and advertisers have been able to work with more confidence in relation to their goals and investments to make decisions in real time.
Regarding goal and revenue forecasting, machine learning algorithms identify correlations to create more accurate predictive models than manual approaches. In this way, with AI applied to projection tools incorporated into media platforms, forecasts can be continuously adjusted as new data is collected, maintaining relevance and assertiveness.
In highly seasonal operations such as Black Friday, media platform planning tools can provide insights for budget application or channel strategy established in a simulation. This is because these tools use information from the advertiser’s history, market data and behavior projections across various channels. Based on these predictions, it is possible to make better-supported decisions to make bid and budget adjustments.
Furthermore, the use of platforms’ predictive audiences is a valuable ally in media operations to date. These platforms already use AI to analyze the behavior of website visitors and to create segmentations based on their characteristics and preferences. This allows retailers to target specific marketing campaigns and promotions to each segment, increasing the relevance and effectiveness of offers.
One of the main promises of AI for marketing is the power to personalize communication. We know that in times of fierce competition, just having the best offer is not always enough. You need to take the right offer to the right person with the right message, and customization here can make all the difference. AI can fill this gap like no one else.
Through specific tools, connected to a matrix of audiences, it is possible to create triggers linking audience rules, products, prices and other combinations. In this case, the main allies are the advanced algorithms of these media platforms, which promote surprising results, unfeasible without the support of technology.
Dynamic pricing is another valuable strategy. In this highly competitive time, consumers are looking for the best deals, which requires retailers to adjust their prices by squeezing margins in real time to match competition and demand. AI is an effective ally in this process, helping to find the balance between sales volume and margins.
A good recommendation system knows how to deliver balance in recommendations without compromising performance. AI solutions help to compose and present recommendations that dynamically generate this balance between volume and margin, according to real-time performance.
Many Artificial Intelligence solutions have been available for a long time, but more and more advertisers and agencies are gaining autonomy on how to use and apply them more strategically on important retail dates. Whoever comes out ahead will certainly have advantages this coming Black Friday.
*Mell Azevedo is Operations Director at i-Cherry