Man versus machine: it’s the age old saga. Particularly since the industrial revolution at the turn of last century, there has been a pervasive fear that machines are taking away jobs from humans, leading to the rise of machines and the eventual subservience of humans.
This is most certainly hyperbole, though automation is certainly taking over some jobs, and possibly even doing a better job than humans ever could.
Take for example data analysis. We live in an era when we have more data available to us than ever before, but we don’t always have the ability to analyze it fully. This is where automation comes in.
Machines can take huge amounts of data and make sense of it in a way humans just aren’t capable of. Does this mean machines are taking data analysis jobs away from humans? Most certainly not. Rather machines are doing work that humans couldn’t possibly do even if they had months to complete it.
So where does this all fit in for marketing? It takes a human mind to come up with marketing ideas and how to implement them, but machines can be helpful when scaling to a larger campaign. Something like pay-per-click advertising is great for generating sales leads, but then you have to go through and figure out which ones are worth pursuing. Imagine if you could use software to weed out all the chatter so you could just deal with the serious leads.
Under these circumstances, would you think that machines are taking over your job or that machines are helping you be better at your job? Hopefully the answer is the latter, and if it’s not it’s probably because you’re busy manually going through all those leads and you haven’t had time yet to form a coherent thought.
There’s plenty of software out there that is disrupting the notion that everything has to be done by humans. Uber helps you call a ride, track the route, and pay all from your cell phone. You just can’t do that with a cab!
AirBNB is disrupting the travel industry by connecting travelers with homeowners instead of having to rely on costly hotels.
Palantir is providing data analysis on a level no one else has been able to, disrupting the big data sphere.
It takes humans to come up with these ideas, code the software, and implement changes. But once the automation takes over the end product is a simplified life for the humans who use it.
Before you summarily dismiss automation as something that is going to eventually cost you your job, consider instead embracing it as a way to make you better at your job. If you can do one thing really well, why not allow machines to help you automate that one thing so you can scale your results way up?
Learn more about the role of automation in marketing and other fields from this infographic. Will you embrace automation when it comes or will you resist on the grounds you might lose your job?
Leave a comment below and tell us what you think!