Digital Marketing
AI challenges for marketers in 2021? Can AI replace marketers?

AI challenges for marketers in 2021? Can AI replace marketers?

Every company has a marketing team that has to adapt rapidly to stay afloat. A decade ago, it would have been a lot tougher to do that. In modern times, however, we have AI helping us every step of the way. Artificial Intelligence in marketing is proving to be one of the most useful tools ever.

We can get more detailed insights and a better understanding of our customers. Which eventually leads to better marketing results. But, we should also note that many challenges in AI tag along.

In this blog, we will discuss all the AI challenges that marketers face in 2021. Later in the blog, we will also address a popular question, “Can AI replace marketers?” later in the blog.

What is Artificial Intelligence Marketing?

Artificial Intelligence marketing is the process of using AI to automate tasks and workflows within the marketing department. You can see many examples of artificial intelligence in digital marketing. For instance, an interactive chatbot on a company’s website.

Similarly, the combined effort of these automation algorithms is what makes AI marketing much more efficient. Instead of replacing the marketers, the current artificial intelligence in marketing simply augments their performance. More on that later.

Now let’s take a look at a few things that AI marketing does.

artificial intelligence in marketing
  1. Data analysis
  2. Media buying
  3. Automated decision-making
  4. Content generation
  5. Active personalization
  6. NLP

Apart from these, there are other ways in which artificial intelligence impacts today’s marketing. So, you can understand that with all these applications comes a bunch of problems. Let’s move on to that.

Challenges of Using AI for Digital Marketing

Here is the list of the top 6 challenges of using artificial intelligence in digital marketing.

  • Rapidly changing trends
  • High initial investment
  • Lack of data
  • Social media policies
  • Ethical and moral issues
  • Selecting where to use AI

A year back, AI challenges were much more different from what it is now. AI is a rapidly growing sector with versatile applications. Innovations roll out almost every day. It makes you think about whether you have made the right decision to implement an AI tool. For instance, some companies optimize their digital marketing strategy based on current AI techniques. But, they simply get overpowered by a better AI technique within a months’ span.

This is where things get complicated for marketers. Not only should they look out for changing market trends, but also for evolving trends in the artificial intelligence market. Another instance is where the software no longer adapts to the current AI algorithms. So, marketers also have to spend enough time researching the tools that will scale according to the evolving technology.

2. High Initial Investment

Even though many SaaS providers claim that AI comes at an affordable rate, it is not valid in most cases. AI essentially reduces the need for time and repetitive labor. But, it also increases the need for trained professionals. Also, there are many maintenances that you need to do to maintain productivity. Plus, regular updates are a must when it comes to AI-based tools.

This is one of the primary challenges of using AI. Apart from spending time upgrading the software, you need to be careful when you do so. Any mishap can lead to the loss of valuable data.

3. Lack of Data

For marketing processes to be efficient, you need to have excellent data from reliable sources. Almost 54% of companies report that their biggest challenge is data quality (Source: invesp). In this data-driven era, it is quite incompetent to have unreliable data. This is one of the significant AI challenges 2021 poses to marketers.

Just to put things into perspective, a lack of data leaves the marketers baffled. The decisions they make for a marketing strategy won’t work out efficiently as they had hoped. This would result in the collapse of the entire revenue for the business. So, yeah, data is kinda crucial for AI marketing.

4. Social Media Policies

After the advent of artificial intelligence in marketing, more and more customers feel the need to increase their privacy. Social media platforms often change their policies to satisfy the customers, like how Facebook AI challenges us by restricting some gathering techniques.

The challenges in AI adoption for social media marketing primarily raise the question of privacy. Unlike the manual user-data gathering process, AI gathers almost every crucial data of the users. So your first cold call to a lead might sound creepy if you already know all about them.

5. Ethical and Moral Issues

People have long started using AI in their life without even realizing it. But, when you implement artificial intelligence in marketing, it takes over the person who did all the repetitive tasks. Thus, creating a negative outlook from the employees. Some may find AI as a gift that significantly reduces their duties. While others may think of it as a machine taking over human jobs.

Other challenges with AI of concern include fewer use cases and other potential security risks. If you need your AI algorithm to perform well, you need to provide it with all the data you can. Without proper security protocols, all that data is at risk of cyberattack. And so is your business network. It all falls on the hands of marketers what kind of tools they wish to use for realizing their marketing strategy.

6. Selecting Where to Use AI

This may seem like a simple problem, but it actually decides whether your brand impression soars or falls. Just because there is an AI tool for doing a particular activity, it’s not necessary that you must use them. For example, autoresponders for customer tweets rely on specific keywords.

A bad review written with good keywords becomes a recipe for disaster. Hence, the marketer must choose the right place to add artificial intelligence to digital marketing. This is one of the primary challenges in AI adoption for marketers.

Can AI Replace Marketers?

Before drawing a conclusion, let us look at the top three points which make people think AI will take over their jobs.

  • Speed of Artificial intelligence in marketing
  • Better content creation
  • Accuracy of AI

1. Speed of Artificial Intelligence in Marketing

The primary reason a company adapts AI is its speed. This is why an increasing number of companies rely on AI. Eventually, many companies didn’t feel the need to hire low-level employees to perform repetitive tasks. This is also one of the challenges in AI for marketers who fear losing their jobs.

2. Better Content Creation

Since the unveiling of automation systems that could generate entire content for a company, many content creators are on edge. All it needs is the title of the content you are going to write about. When creative writing can become automated, it naturally instills a fear in content marketers doing SEO research and content creation.

3. Accuracy of AI

Manual errors are one of the reasons why traditional marketing couldn’t go beyond certain limits. But with AI, every calculation made is accurate. This led to the creation of new methods of marketing and real-time personalization. However, it also makes the job of some decision-makers almost irrelevant.

The final answer to the question is that AI will not replace marketers. Why? Despite the above reasons, every AI needs a human touch and tweak to keep it working. Many jobs will indeed get automated, and many will lose their jobs. But, it will also open more job opportunities than what we have now. It leads to everyone working in a creative environment rather than performing mundane tasks all day long.

Refer to the following table to understand that the AI impact challenges are worth it.

challenges of using AI


Being a marketer takes more than just being fast and accurate. Marketing requires creativity and adaptability. Which can only grow after years of experience in marketing and its tactics. Even with all the AI challenges, most digital marketers continue to do a great job obtaining and converting leads.

TheExpertCafé Team

A distinctive community of marketers based out of the US that conducts market research surveys on niche segments of digital marketing to influence the future of marketing. We welcome marketers like you to join TheExpertCafé and use your industry experience to help decision-makers chart the course for new marketing products and platforms.

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