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IMC professionals express mixed reactions over AI impact on adspend

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Against the backdrop of Artificial Intelligence (AI) that has become a handy toolkit for marketers and agencies to automate decision-making processes, professionals in the Integrated Marketing Communication (IMC) space have raised concerns that the advanced technology, as a two-edged sword, might end up propelling a reduction in advertising spend by brands in the future.

They argued that the rate at which AI technology is employed to streamline efforts is changing the entire marketing and communications ecosystem, and may affect ad spend negatively. According to them, areas where speed and effective results are crucial have been replaced by Artificial Intelligence, as the roles of marketers and agencies may be relegated to the background or be subjected to low marketing budgets soon.

Okpe Mathias, Managing Partner/Creative Director, Badger Creative Limited, said AI has brought some form of fear across the board and opined that its deployment can have a negative impact on advertising budget.

“Agencies and marketers can be afraid or might experience a cut in their budget when brands resort to the use of AI, which at this point, is not advisable. It is pretty new, so a lot of brands are testing and trying. In the short term, of course, marketers and agencies should be afraid that brands are actually going to be spending less on advertising.

“Now, this is possible because people are trying different aspect of assumed intelligence. I will give you an example, with artificial intelligence, you can actually type in an article and get a TV script. What that means is that a brand that originally would hire a copy content writer to do a video script, would rather throw it out to AI, which is in the short-run,” he said.

Outlining some of the challenges posed by AI, Mathias confirmed that the multifaceted ability of the tool, however, cannot replace the unique touch that comes with human creativity.

“Yes, it is possible in the short run but in the long run, brands will begin to realize that the creativity and the human touch that agencies have to put the finishing touches that are humanly relatable into creative work, cannot be provided by AI. So it cannot replace human creativity.

“In the short run, they might be tempted to cut down on their budget, but in the long run, they would revert and then they will come for the real human factor. Yes, it is very possible that humans in the long run are going to look forward to AI for answers but I am just letting you know that it does not have all the answers, especially when they are needed and it is urgent,” he added.

“AI may do most of the work, but the truth is there will always be a need for the human factor to always get that right answer. AI does not have the power to be creative, AI is a machine learning and it learns from the activities of human. So you don’t do the learnings ahead of the persons who produce the learnings. Obviously, AI is going to disrupt, but it will eventually not take over human capacity to deliver creativity in an instance,” he noted.

On his part, Oti Ukubeyinje, an Exco of Association of Digital Marketing Professionals (ADMARP) envisaged that AI will help practitioners to make significant leaps in every decision-making process and in the creation of effective campaigns. He averred that it has the potential to revolutionize advertising, especially with the ability to transform the formats of delivering advertising messages.

“No, I don’t foresee a takeover to likely happen. From my perspective, AI will improve several aspects of digital advertising including targeting, budget optimization, and creative selection and over ad performance. This will see advertisers gain more ROI for their budgets. When this happens we will see either incremental digital investment or a shift from other channels into digital,” he said.

Ukubeyinje, who allayed the prevailing fears that AI may bring a negative cause effect in advertising spend, reaffirmed that the technology will continue to help practitioners to unlock new horizons and new levels of innovation as long as they embrace its power to improve the effectiveness of their marketing strategies.

“As for AI eroding the role of agencies, I think we will experience a drastic competency and functional shift. Similar to how websites didn’t necessarily replace salespeople, but armed them with the ability to provide prospects with a lot more information, covering sales beyond office hours. We will adjust and adapt to the role of AI-driven solutions as part of the marketing and advertising ecosystem,” he averred.

Richard Iweanoge , Chief Executive Officer of Papyrus Digital Solutions Company, in his view, observed that overtime, individuals have always had some doubts over new ideologies or developments. He urged industry practitioners to embrace AI for versatility and harnessing of opportunities in the ecosystem.

“I think history should be a good barometer for assessing such things. Every time a new technology comes out, the reaction has always been that it will take away the jobs and roles of humans. Without exception this has always been human beings’ reactions to technology – be it computers, machinery in farms or cars replacing horse drawn carriages etc.

“However, what history teaches us is that a reorganization of society happens that incorporates the beneficial impact of these technologies, and in the process creates a whole new unforeseen ecosystem of opportunities that even surpasses the disruption it caused in other places. This technology will be no exception. We can be uncomfortable with the immediate short term impact, but in the long run, it will be great for the creative industry,” he noted.

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Police Probe US Businessman’s Sudden Demise in Lagos Hotel

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– US-based businessman Onyejekwe Izuchukwu found dead in Lagos hotel
– Police investigation underway to determine cause of death
– Autopsy to be performed to reveal more details

The Lagos State Police Command has launched an investigation into the sudden death of Onyejekwe Izuchukwu, a 62-year-old US-based businessman. Izuchukwu’s body was discovered in his hotel room in Ikoyi on June 9, 2024.

According to a source, Izuchukwu had been staying at the hotel since June 6, engaging in business activities. Tragically, his lifeless body was found by a cleaner on the floor of his room.

The hotel’s management reported the incident to the police, who have commenced an investigation into the circumstances surrounding Izuchukwu’s death. A doctor was called to the scene and confirmed the businessman’s demise.

Izuchukwu was a prominent figure in the oil and gas industry, having served as President of Bits and Drilling Tools, a division of Schlumberger. His death has sent shockwaves through the industry.

“The command has commenced an investigation into the case,” said Police Public Relations Officer, Benjamin Hundeyin. “Izuchukwu’s corpse has been deposited in a morgue in Ikeja for autopsy.”

 

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Lagos Govt Opens Emergency Center To Curb Cholera Outbreak

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– Lagos activates emergency centre to combat cholera outbreak
– UNICEF urges provision of clean water and sanitation facilities
– 350 suspected cases reported with 17 confirmed and 15 deaths

Lagos State Government has activated its Public Health Emergency Operations Centre to tackle the cholera outbreak. The centre will coordinate responses to the increasing number of severe gastroenteritis cases across the state.

According to Prof. Akin Abayomi, Commissioner for Health, the laboratory investigation has confirmed Cholera sub-type O-1, associated with more severe disease. He urged residents to adhere strictly to precautionary measures to prevent further spread.

Meanwhile, UNICEF has called on the state government to provide high-standard water and sanitation facilities to communities. Celine Lafoucrier, Chief of UNICEF Lagos Field Office, emphasized the need for strengthened healthcare systems to respond to outbreaks.

Lafoucrier stated, “Addressing cholera outbreaks requires a deliberate focus on providing high-standard water and sanitation facilities.” She also stressed the importance of community engagement strategies to halt transmission.

The state government has confirmed 350 suspected cases of cholera in 29 wards across multiple LGAs, with 17 confirmed cases and 15 deaths. However, the number of new cases is subsiding in previously affected areas due to interventions and surveillance efforts.

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