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How Artificial Intelligence is Affecting Entertainment

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“People are doing whatever they can to avoid advertising.” Ricky Ray Butler is CEO at Branded Entertainment Network (BEN) and was speaking at a lively panel discussion about AI’s progressive role in entertainment at CES 2019 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

“Look at Netflix and Amazon Prime, they’re exploding. The viewer is in control, they only watch what they want. When a brand and content creator reach a consensus, the audience wins. They celebrate that the brand has empowered the content not disturbed it, leading to higher engagements and greater conversions.” Butler was joined by two content creation experts to explore how AI is revolutionizing the entertainment industry — and the opportunities this offers brands.

AI Can Protect You from Influencer Fraud

Influencer fraud is a growing concern for brands as influencer marketing grows in popularity. Patrick believes AI can help: “AI is better able to parse real engagement and activity on the platforms compared with humans. You can run Instagram creator X through the system and that data can tell you all about that creator and throw up any concerns.”

But Patrick also says that while there is much hype around the issue now, it is one that has long been around — and platforms such as YouTube and Instagram are continuing to tackle it. “Influencer fraud is a buzzword right now — it’s happened for a while but people are catching on to it. AI can help brands and content creators tackle the issue but that is in addition to what the platforms are doing themselves, which isn’t always reflected in the press.”

Butler believes the fraudsters are improving themselves though, as it is difficult to discern fake followers from real ones, even on machines. He said: “This is one of those things where you’re never going to find a perfect creator with a perfect audience, without a single fake follower, but you’ll be able to tell through AI which creators are better than others.”

The Decade of AI-Backed Entertainment

It cannot be denied that we are living in the decade of AI-Backed Entertainment. The next time you sit down to watch a movie over a weekend, your streaming service might recommend you a blockbuster based on AI Algorithms personalised to your preferences! The futuristic movies may well be written by AI, performed by robots and animated by a deep learning algorithm, according to ces.tech. What more? We may have an AI algorithm reading the scripts and suggesting studios to buy the movie rights!

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It can well be ascertained that artificial intelligence is the next big thing in entertainment from content consumption to digital visualization. As content consumption evolve and re-evolve in the current highly fragmented media landscape, media houses and digital streaming platforms should harness artificial intelligence to improvise customer experiences for better viewing and content delivery mechanisms. By doing so, the entertainment industry will make it easier for consumers to access content by developing new AI-related technologies like voice control commands. AI surely seems to have enhanced Hollywood’s creativity, by leaps and bounds. Imagine something like Siri or Alexa in Netflix or Amazon Prime, showing you the content, you want through voice-controlled commands!

AI Stops You from Irritating Audiences

“AI takes a lot of the guesswork out of content creation. It helps create content that resonates,” explained Patrick. “Take movie trailers, for example. AI and deep learning can tell us things like you need to include an explosion half way through, hit them with the brand title twice, or show the main character within a few seconds, points out aaai.org. It helps you create a product that grips people and makes them want more. The beauty of AI is it can do it at a rate and scale that no one has ever been able to touch before.”

Eves believes that there is a shift and advertisers risk alienating generation Z if they don’t move to less intrusive formats, which AI can help make happen at scale: “My children see ads play before something now and they’re like ‘What is that?’. They find it disruptive. We’ll see this audience shunning those types of ads and be more drawn to influencer marketing and product integration, which are less intrusive.”

Patrick added that AI can help brands be much more relevant: “Location-based targeting is exciting as you can reference local places, not just big cities — you can really lean in to data-based tracking and make content much more personal. There is also mood-based targeting: you can target ads in cities based on a general mood determined by local sporting events, for instance. ESPN is doing this already.”

AI Helps You to Get Seen by Your Target Audience

A lot of content creators and brands are still planning campaigns off gut feelings, explained Matthew Patrick, host and creator of the YouTube channels The Game Theorists, The Film Theorists & GTLive. And they are missing out on dozens and dozens of key data points, he explained: “AI empowers brands to do things that are optimized based on rich data and insights. This knowledge allows the brand to get more return on their investment so everyone wins and all ships rise.”

Butler said that when brands use deep learning technology, like BEN’s neural networks, they have seen click-through rates increase by over 250%. So what exactly can these insights tell you – and how does it make such an impact? Derral Eves, CEO, Creatus and VidSummit gave one example of AI in action: “It can surf vast amounts of content and tell you when audiences are dipping and peaking. You can see what’s going to resonate for certain audiences and optimize based on this.”

Patrick added: “As content creators and as marketers, if you want to have your content seen you have to play nice with the algorithms. You could have outstanding YouTube content but if you’re not playing by the rules of the algorithms and packaging content in a way people want to see, it won’t get seen. AI and experimentation can show what thumbnail, title and format will get the results.”