Does Your Media Agency Need a Chief AI Officer?

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Concepts like artificial intelligence, machine learning and natural language processing are invading all facets of the ad business. Today, media shops can set up AI dashboards that alert them to strange patterns in their metrics or make their internal processes more efficient. Clients are looking for work that has AI woven in, whether it's Alexa skills or chatbots.


New York-based Crossmedia hired a new executive director of cognitive solutions, who will head up the agency's work in that area — covering everything from client projects that use AI like chatbots or Alexa skills to other areas of cognitive solutions. The field includes data-driven creative work that might change according to weather, stock fluctuations or time of day, and data science, which encompasses deep learning and pattern detection.

As the possibilities of AI are becoming known, agencies are grappling with the best way to bring in that knowledge. Isobar, for example, doesn't have a head of AI, but does rely on employees' expertise to understand how it can help the business until it's more deeply ingrained. The company has an "Isobar Academy," an online curriculum available to its 6,000 employees. Employees work on the forefront of new technologies, and once it really catches on, the company starts more formalized training across all employees.

At GroupM shop Maxus, transformational new ideas ideally get absorbed across all leadership once a topic is understood, instead of letting it live with a sole executive or business unit. When it comes to AI and innovation more generally, the company relies on employees to figure out where tools and techniques can deliver operational efficiencies and improve clients' business.

If you are looking for a media agency to help you discern whether you could use an AI solution, start with Lookbook.

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