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Building An AI Launch Pad

2 minute read

By Ben Lee, Senior Communications Manager at Bidwells

There is a short but sometimes anxious period after giving a presentation to a large audience when you're not sure how it's been received. You sit quietly, hoping you got the tone and material right.

When the topic is AI that period feels a little bit longer. AI has been around for such a short time that it's hard to know what others are thinking and doing. And as we know, AI is a bit hype-y at the moment.

Rather than going all big picture, at Engage MarTech’s Future of Marketing Conference, I simply told people what I've been doing. I decided to keep it practical and focus on what I've learned from using AI in my day-to-day work for over 24 months. Using AI is almost normal now to me, so it was a nervy few minutes waiting to see whether I’d pitched it right or shown myself up.

The response was almost overwhelming. Person after person came up to me afterwards, telling me how much the talk resonated with them. DMs on LinkedIn told me how they'd been grappling with AI, trying to understand it, to figure out how to apply it, but feeling like they didn't know where to start. But now they do.

We’re all only just getting started, it seems. There is no official guidebook to read. Businesses aren’t providing implementation plans.

Lots of people told me they've been waiting to be shown how to use a tool by somebody in their business or team but were not getting anywhere fast.

But having now heard from someone “normal” (I'll take that as a compliment) had applied AI to what they already know, with minimal technical skill, and got good results, they were “encouraged” or even “inspired” and were going back to the office to get started.

Reflecting on the three sessions, I'm more convinced than ever that AI is not really about tools, systems or processes but a change in mindset. Learning to prompt and build no-code automation was the subject of my talks but what resonated with people most was seeing the clear shift in mindset I've made over 24 months.

The nine-step framework I called ‘Building an AI Launchpad’ really just tells the story of how I've gone from learning and reading about AI to applying it to my role.

I’ve had more than 67 requests for my slides from last month so I thought I would set out the nine steps again over the next couple of weeks, with some links, and share with people some of the things I’ve learned that have shifted the way I’m thinking about ‘work’.

It’s a shift in which I’m doing less and thinking more.

We're not there yet. But I think this is a process that all marketing professionals will need to go through in the next couple of years and I'm inspired to continue sharing what I'm learning with others.

You can follow Ben on LinkedIn here.

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