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Design by computers: How AI is changing the graphic design industry

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30-second summary:

  • Artificial intelligence has matured a lot today. The biggest achievement of technology can be seen in logo designing.
  • It can work as your assistant when you do creative work and help you achieve photorealistic effects, find the right content with an intuitive search, and more.
  • Artificial intelligence tools can limit the legwork for graphics designers and perform repetitive tasks for them so that they can focus on the bigger picture. In other words, AI is not going to replace designers but merely work as their assistants. At least that’s what we can surmise for now.

There is no denying that artificial intelligence (AI) is one of the biggest technologies of the current generation. It holds tremendous potential in domains like healthcare, education, manufacturing, etc.

However, to everyone’s surprise, AI has also found an application in the creative arena. For instance, mobile app developers are using AI to design a better mobile app user experience.

There is also a wide range of graphic design software that leverage AI for creating complex designs. So, are we on the verge of AI revolution in the design space?

Let’s discuss.

Content made in partnership with Accunite Solutions.

The rise of AI in graphics design

AI has matured a lot today. The biggest achievement of technology can be seen in logo designing. After all, it was a perfect match since the beginning.

Take Tailor Brands, for example. It’s a highly advanced AI-based logo designer that can produce attractive and unique logos for entrepreneurs. Sure, it can’t match the work of human designers but it’s fast, affordable, and offers tons of customizable features.

Most importantly, it can mimic a human designer by understanding your design requirements.

A few years ago, a software application that can process human requirements for a graphics design like a logo was simply unheard of. This is because it was something that’s usually reserved for human’s emotional intelligence.

There are many examples of tech giants also using artificial intelligence. For instance, Adobe’s new AI tool Sensei uses machine learning to make it easier for you to create the perfect customer experiences through visual assets.

It can work as your assistant when you do creative work and help you achieve photorealistic effects, find the right content with an intuitive search, and more.

These examples show that AI has not just forayed into digital design space but rather become an indispensable component to give a new direction to the industry.

This brings us to another important question:

Can AI replace designers?

AI tools are all the rage today. However, the good news is that graphic designers needn’t fear them. This is because at least at this stage, AI can only serve to make graphic design easier.

AI tools can limit the legwork for graphics designers and perform repetitive tasks for them so that they can focus on the bigger picture. In other words, AI is not going to replace designers but merely work as their assistants. At least that’s what we can surmise for now.

This is because there are some major limitations of AI today:

1) Understanding nuances that come naturally to humans

AI has come a long way today, but it’s far from being even comparable to human intelligence. This is because we humans have emotional intelligence which AI doesn’t have.

We are capable of understanding body language, the subtle changes in voice and tone, and the messages we get when we read between the lines. This understanding of common nuances is absent in AI.

So, it can be difficult to make an AI software understand what we really want it to do when there are subtleties in the design.

Occasionally, it can happen that you lay down the requirements for a simple website interface or app design that has a certain connotation, but the AI program you are using interprets it differently.

2) Originality

What makes us humans special is our ability to imagine. So many geniuses who walked on the face of the Earth created music, paintings, and poems that are simply out of the world and can’t be replicated. AI doesn’t have that kind of capacity- it can’t imagine.

3) Human touch

We know that ecommerce has exploded today. However, many people still prefer shopping from local stores.

This is because they get a personalized experience by shopping offline- the friendly store owner can understand their requirements and give recommendations in a way that can’t be matched by an online service.

The same principle can be seen in graphics design. There are many entrepreneurs who want a human touch, a human being who can listen to their problems and create designs that aptly meet their needs.

Bottom line of AI and graphic design

Artificial intelligence is a powerful technology and there is no dearth of its merits. It’s disrupted many industries and we can see more achievements in the time to come as the technology becomes closer to human intelligence.

That said, AI is still pretty much dependent on us and requires inputs from graphics designers to do most of the tasks. So, for now, AI has simplified graphics design to a great extent, at least for people who don’t have a design background.

However, to tap into its full potential, we need to wait a little longer.

Carl Dean is a freelance content writer that specializes in content topics that touch on tech and AI. Carl happily identifies as a geek – it’s a badge of honor for him. When not writing, Carl can be found attached to his Xbox, his favorite game at the moment is Doom Eternal.

The post Design by computers: How AI is changing the graphic design industry appeared first on ClickZ.



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Marketing Strategies

Generating The Spark For Memorable Virtual Experiences

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/

/Now more than ever, marketers are competing for customers’ attention. With many professionals working from home, not only are you up against the internet, but you are angling for time in the midst of your customers’ workloads, emails, children, pets, laundry and whatever else is going on in their lives.

 The potential for distraction is everywhere. So the primary goal needs to be getting and keeping your customer engaged, with limited time to achieve that.

I call this sustained engagement goal as “generating the spark” — creating an experience for a user that will ignite a lasting memory. But how do we transform traditional sales models into truly engaging, digital, interactive experiences that create a spark? Here are a few tips.

Brevity Is Your Friend

Traditionally, B2B companies focus on lots of details. In a first engagement, especially a digital one, the visitor needs to be able to connect very quickly to the value you provide. It’s critical to start with the digestibility of the message — an easy-to-understand story that shows logical progression. Don’t get caught up in the particulars at first. Remember that the minutia, which you may find important, probably doesn’t apply in your first interaction. Your goal is to get customers to return, so they can ask more detailed questions during the second engagement in their buyer journey. 

Find Your Inner B2C

When we think of a virtual “connection,” we think of connecting with other people, not with content. But we make emotional connections with content, as well. The key ingredient to establishing a connection with content is creativity. 

Traditionally, B2B marketers are on the conservative side when it comes to their content and customer engagement strategies. B2B buyers want to be entertained in the same way they are by consumer-focused marketing. B2B organizations can set themselves apart from the competition by embracing bold expression over the same old, conservative methods.

Bring Your Customer Into Virtual Environments 

If you want your product to be remembered, you need to bring your buyer somewhere that will evoke emotion and feelings of connection. I like to categorize a virtual experience into three scenarios:

  1. Real, but impossible: Take your audience somewhere that exists in the real world but is not accessible because of physics. For example, if you are talking to the power of a processor or technical product specifications, you could drop your guest onto a motherboard or the working mechanism of a complicated device. This change of perspective transforms their perception of the products you sell, demonstrating unique value to the customer.  
  2. The real world: You can recreate any place, but you have to know why you’re recreating it. The sky’s the limit in the virtual world and you can create a space that is widely inaccessible to the average person like an oil rig or medical laboratory.
  3. It’s OK to be abstract: Sometimes the value of a product or service can be conceptual, and that’s fine. This is an opportunity to place a user in a more creative or artistic space. If we can create a visually appealing environment — one that uses color, shape and captivating user interfaces in dynamic ways — the experience can elicit a visceral reaction, one that will create a lasting impression. 

Creating the application environment is just the beginning of “generating the spark” for a buyer. As we move forward in this crazy new world, it will get increasingly more important to relate to users in creative and meaningful ways.


 As Associate Director of Creative Services / Mixed Reality Experience Strategist at Kaon Interactive, Howard’s role is to innovate user interaction and engagement for applications for Fortune 500 companies. Howard’s passion for interactivity has helped Kaon’s customers tell complex stories while creating emotional connections and exciting their audiences.



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Instant messaging has taken over the world, but this is just the beginning

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30-second summary:

  • Chatbots will soon be ubiquitous in written business communication, and they present a paradox that flips everything consumers think they know about automation on its head.
  • Customer input to a company is valuable information, and using messaging apps, customer feedback can also become actionable. By interacting with a bot, a customer is leaving an eternal record of their input, whatever it is, in a system that can read, analyze, and internalize the information.
  • Furthermore, instant messaging apps and VoIP present the possibility of integrating video or phone calls into your communication. The combination of fluid written conversation and video has opened the door to digital transmission in many fields traditionally reserved for face-to-face interactions.
  • Instant messaging has a fluidity that resembles that of spoken conversation. This fluidity is coming to good use now, especially for small businesses, which operate by one-on-one interactions, for which investments in big and bulky IT-systems are beyond superfluous.

The conversation surrounding the digitization of society has sounded in classrooms, newsrooms, and marketing departments for decades. During the pandemic, the process was accelerated as instant messaging came to the rescue, earning much-justified praise for helping people maintain connections even at a distance.

If there is one thing the process has taught us, it’s that the future has a way of sneaking up on us. So what will messaging look like, before we even know it?

The value of chatbots

Chatbots will soon be ubiquitous in written business communication, and they present a paradox that flips everything consumers think they know about automation on its head.

Generally, many people think the bots reflect over-automation and less-personalized service. Yet regular, human employees at corporations usually have very standardized, canned responses as well, offering only a veneer of personal service.

Chatbots reveal that the truly important part of the communication between a business and its customers is what the customers have to say, and bots’ role will become increasingly important.

Customer input to a company is valuable information, and using messaging apps, customer feedback can also become actionable. By interacting with a bot, a customer is leaving an eternal record of their input, whatever it is, in a system that can read, analyze, and internalize the information.

Instant messaging apps and VoIP provide an added layer of personalization

Furthermore, instant messaging apps and VoIP present the possibility of integrating video or phone calls into your communication. The combination of fluid written conversation and video has opened the door to digital transmission in many fields traditionally reserved for face-to-face interactions.

Tele-health, yoga-classes, and education are but a few examples of services ready to adapt, and they quickly managed to deploy instant messaging.

Experiences resembling one-on-one interactions, but still taking place at a distance, are essential and more useful than ever before. This will remain true well after COVID, as businesses and individuals alike become accustomed to the efficiency and effectiveness of such interactions.

Until now, messaging has mostly involved replicating real-world communication in the virtual world as seamlessly as possible.

But what if virtual communication were actually an improvement of physical communication? Imagine having a live call with someone across the globe who speaks a different language.

In real-time, the software can recognize the speech, anachronistically translate it, intelligently adjust for tone, prevent misunderstanding, or warn you that you might be stumbling into a cross-cultural faux pas.

The software could be intelligent and integrate with your calendar. As soon as you agree to meet someone for dinner, automatically, a reservation is made at your favorite restaurant and the event is added to your calendars.

This technology will be made available sooner than we think, and messaging apps will be the ones to implement them.

Instant messaging to play a major role in the evolution of communication

Messaging services will become the bridge between impersonal email and human touch. There is a reason messaging apps consume the most significant part of people’s internet use.

Whether consumers use social media platforms, dating apps, or office communication systems, it’s the messaging that gets people hooked.

Instant messaging has a fluidity that resembles that of spoken conversation. This fluidity is coming to good use now, especially for small businesses, which operate by one-on-one interactions, for which investments in big and bulky IT-systems are beyond superfluous.

Though it might not seem like it, society is still new to digital communications. The technology is in its infancy, and companies and individuals alike are still figuring out how to harness it in the best way.

By expanding its functionality and integrating instant messenger services to more facets of society, we improve the quality of the conversation between people, businesses, and institutions—one more step along the path to enhancing society with digital technologies.

Djamel Agaoua is the CEO of Rakuten Viber, one of the world’s largest mobile applications with 800+ million users worldwide, offering a range of features such as one-on-one chats, video calls, group messaging, social shopping, and updates. A veteran executive with a track record of growing innovative global techs, Djamel is a private investor and sought-after board member, advisor, and speaker.

The post Instant messaging has taken over the world, but this is just the beginning appeared first on ClickZ.



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Want media coverage? Make sure your content is emotional

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30-second summary:

  • Emotion is a pivotal component of great content.
  • If you have an opportunity to create emotional content, you’re much more likely to be successful. 
  • A new Fractl study reveals what emotions are most common in highly-linked-to content in each industry.
  • You should explore what emotions are already prevalent in your industry to gain new ideas and understand what already resonates with your audience.
  • When pitching content to writers, highlight the key emotional takeaways so reporters glean them quickly.

Yes, content should be useful. In fact, nine times out of 10, it must be useful in order to make an impact. But emotion is pivotal too. Emotion can form a sense of connection between a reader and a story — between a reader and their place in the world. For this reason, emotion can sometimes carry an entire piece of content because it taps into our common humanity. How do you hit the right chords with emotional content? Here are tips on how to do that.

Sure, it sounds corny. But that doesn’t make it any less true. Emotion matters, and if you have an opportunity to create emotional content, you’re much more likely to be successful. 

1. Understand which emotions resonate in your industry

Before jumping into content creation, it’s good to understand what works well in your particular niche. What content that’s been created has performed well, and why? What emotions are present in some of the most talked-about content?

In a recent Fractl study, we looked at more than 5,000 pieces of content that earned at least 25 backlinks. Then we explored which Facebook reactions were more prevalent in each content niche.

This breakdown provides a great overlook of what emotions are already prominent in your niche’s content. Look at how anger appears in sex/relationship stories while love appears often in travel stories. 

Why do you think these emotions may be associated with your niche? What can you cover that hasn’t already been covered that taps into why people are upset or in awe?

To gain more industry insight, before creating content, I would:

  • Pull out my customer personas. What emotions are tied to what they worry about? Struggle with? Seek out? Can I apply these emotions to content?
  • Read my target publications’ content. Which articles are on the front page? Which got the most engagement? What emotions are featured in them?
  • Check BuzzSumo to see what content is most engaged within my industry. Not only will this highlight certain emotions that are prevalent, but it’ll also let you know if an idea you have has already been covered in depth.

Take a look at some of the highly-engaged-with stories that appear on the BuzzSumo content search for “job interview”.

Buzzsumo search emotional content

Just from this snapshot of stories, you can see multiple emotions: humor/laughter regarding funny anecdotes, fear that the job application process might be totally changed by AI, happiness at the kind gesture from Lyft, and contempt at discrimination taking place at interviews.

Perhaps honing in on one of these emotions can spark an idea. What else might people be afraid of regarding the job application process? What else are they angry about? Happy about?

When all else fails, capitalize on the feeling of surprise. Our research on viral emotions revealed that the most common emotion in viral images is “surprise”. People like to learn something new that’s unexpected. If your data reveals data points like this, make sure to highlight it in the project.

2. Identify which emotions to focus on in your content

When trying to come up with content ideas, ask yourself: What emotions are tied to this concept? What are the different circumstances people can encounter, and how do those circumstances make them feel?

For example, for our client The Interview Guys (a job interview advice portal), we considered the variety of issues that can come up related to work. One such idea that hadn’t been fully addressed, in our opinion, was burnout. 

Burnout in and of itself is an emotional topic. It’s associated with stress, anxiety, and exhaustion. After surveying people about burnout, we earned coverage on Inc., Yahoo Finance AU, and International Business Times.

Example emotional content topic - Burnout

But not every idea will be as emotionally straightforward. Perhaps you have an instinct that analyzing a certain data set would yield interesting results.

Push yourself to identify

What would make those results compelling? What insights might this data help us gain, and what emotions are involved with these insights?

For example, in a separate project for the same client, we thought about identifying jobs that pay well that don’t require years of education. What we’d end up with is a list of jobs and what they’d pay. 

On the surface, this may not seem too emotional. But let’s consider the layers involved here:

  1. Less schooling means less stress, less debt, and less pressure.
  2. The potential to make a good salary provides hope.
  3. Struggling to find a job with little to no experience can give someone a lot of financial and emotional anxiety.
  4. Why would people care about this information in the first place? They’re looking to switch jobs. For whatever reason, they’re dissatisfied.

So you have stress, anxiety, hope, and dissatisfaction as some examples of emotions tied into this list of jobs. It’s not just a list anymore, is it?

Call upon these feelings every time you make a decision about the project. It’ll help keep you focused on the real soul of the story.

3. Pitch the emotional angles

When you can identify these emotional elements, you’ll also know how to better promote the idea. 

We pitched the high-paying-jobs project to publications. Take a look at some of the coverage.

Emotional content for job searchers

Source: Reader’s Digest

Reader’s Digest opens with the dilemma of not being able to find a job because you don’t have enough job experience yet. They’re tapping into a common, shared frustration people have, and by starting the article this way, they’re immediately putting the reader in a frame of mind to connect emotionally with the content.

Example of emotional content

Source: MarketWatch

This headline taps into the hope angle; they’re essentially saying, you don’t have to be the typical tech person to make a lot of money with little experience.

When you pitch writers, make sure to include the emotional data points and angles prominently. Include bullets of the most impactful takeaways so the reporter doesn’t have to dig through the data to understand why it matters and why their audience will care.

And don’t do the same thing for every publisher. Consider their particular audiences and what they care about, and then tailor your data points to speak to those readers.

Conclusion

Data is only as powerful as the story it tells, and all of the best human stories are packed with emotion. In every stage of your content creation process, from ideation to design to promotion, keep the emotional components in mind and center them.

Amanda Milligan is the Marketing Director at Fractl, a prominent growth marketing agency that’s worked with Fortune 500 companies and boutique businesses.

The post Want media coverage? Make sure your content is emotional appeared first on Search Engine Watch.



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