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Meta's new gen AI feature will work for ad efficiency, but only if the starting point is right

Meta's new gen AI feature will work for ad efficiency, but only if the starting point is right

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This week, Meta, the parent company of social media platforms Facebook and Instagram, said that it would be expanding its suite of generative AI ads products. This includes tools that can create full image variations of original ad creatives and overlay text atop them. 

Meta also launched an image expansion feature which can adjust creative assets to fit different aspect ratios across multiple surfaces, making it available across Reels and Feed on Instagram and Facebook. The offering also works with text overlays on ads. 

Simultaneously, the tech giant is also testing the ability for generated text to reflect a brand's voice and tone. This will be based on previous campaigns and text input. The feature will soon be built with Meta Llama 3. 

Don't miss: YouTube's new AI feature allows users to skip ahead to best parts of a video 

According to industry experts MARKETING-INTERACTIVE spoke to, for brands and agency partners that actively use Meta’s social media platforms, its new Gen AI features for ad creation will be a "welcome addition" to the existing creative solutions tools available as long as it is used smartly. 

"Social media platforms such as Meta often need creative diversity, and these AI solutions will help provide a wide range of options," said Jamshed Wadia, vice chair of digital Asia, Edelman. "Since the tools belong to Meta, they will clearly help with ad compliance and performance on their platform," he said. 

He added that content categories such as performance marketing will benefit from this scale of automation. However, for content that builds brands and creates product or category awareness, human creativity will be even more critical in cutting through the clutter and winning the hearts of consumers.

Agreeing with him, Rebecca Nadilo, managing director or Iris explained that these tools will likely be more helpful for small business who are creating a lot of content by themselves. 

Saying that, she said that it's really up to agencies and brand owners to make sure the inputs into these platforms are still interesting and distinctive instead of chasing efficiencies alone.

This tool will help efficiently create more content, at scale, but if the starting point is boring wallpaper, then you're essentially just creating more of it.

True enough, with AI becoming more widespread among consumers and marketers alike, content production has increased by 56.7% since the year ChatGPT launched as content generation becomes easier than ever.

The substantial growth is seven times higher than the typical increase in rate of content production which averages at 7% per year, underscoring the impact of gen AI tools such as ChatGPT and Bard on the output of marketers.

These were the results of digital asset management provider Bynder’s latest study that aims to uncover the impact of gen AI tools on the amount of content created and managed by marketers.

The study also revealed that the increase in content production is unlikely to slow down as the average marketer is predicted to be responsible for creating 23% more content than they do today in 2030.

Could it put third party social agencies out of business?

While the new AI tools by Meta may seem like a win for brands with tighter budgets, there are still pitfalls that they might need to look out for. 

For one, according to Don Anderson, CEO of Kaddadle, automated AI image creation typically results in higher processing and energy costs for platforms such as Meta. He said: 

Will those costs be passed down to their advertisers via their ad packages, or will these features be provided at no cost?

Anderson explained that he would expect that advertisers should anticipate the former, and the likelihood of a subscription option applied to access these features.

He added that for agencies and independent marketing consultants, it adds yet another compelling and competing option to the mix and may lead to more advertisers relying less on third parties to guide their social media campaigns.

"As the AI becomes more intelligent and able to accurately evaluate tone, voice and positioning of brands and their communications, it may become more difficult for third-party agencies to justify their roles and fees," he explained.

"However, as we’ve seen to date with much of the initial creative output of AI-led tools, there’s a 'same-same' look and feel with much of the content, lacking the creative differentiation and 'soul' that many bigger brands typically seek, which will continue to give agencies a leg up in justifying their existence, at least for now," he said. 

Saying that, Anderson says that the move is still one that is a sign of the times.

"Meta has always been on the forefront of simplifying advertising with on-platform tools, and it's left others like Google in its wake having to catch up, which of course they have," he said, adding that this is just the next, logical evolution for Meta to enhance its competitiveness through an all-in-one, accessible advertising solution particularly for its SME customer base.

Could there be copyright issues?

Meanwhile, marketers and brands should also continue to be wary of copyright laws and ownership of the content, according to Ken Mandel, regional managing director and head of GrabAds. 

"GenAI is in the early stages of development where issues like copyright infringement and AI hallucinations are possible so always need to be aware you are working with new technology that still requires a certain degree of caution," he said. 

True enough, despite the benefits brought about by Gen AI, communications professionals are still mainly concerned about the inaccuracies and mistakes of AI-generated content or advertisements, with 65% of respondents agreeing to that.

More than 50% have also said that the use of Gen AI has been limited at work due to ethical concerns surrounding data usage and transparency while 44% are concerned about the legal issues surrounding AI-generated content, according to a survey done by editorial and research strategy company Media Collateral.

Mandel added that for years, the adtech industry leveraged programmatic media to wallpaper the web with the same banner ad that followed users around the internet. He said:

This banner lacked personalisation and relevance because we did not yet have the capability to execute creative at the same scale as programmatic media.

"This imbalance created a mismatch and also a consumer backlash against advertising which eventually led to the demise of third-party cookies and the rise of first party data platforms such as retail media networks," said Mandel.  

Join us on 12 June 2024 for an exciting experience as Content360 makes its debut in Malaysia! Brace yourself to join the crème de la crème of the content marketing industry hailing from across the region. Immerse yourself in a dynamic atmosphere, and uncover the latest trends with thought leaders and solution providers from the realm of content.

Related articles: 
Meta should allow users to opt out of targeted advertising for free, says EU privacy watchdog  
X, Apple, Google, Meta and more fall short at ad transparency, says report  
Meta to contribute data to the study of well-being 

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