Given the curiosity and interest around generative AI – spurred by the recent launch of Open AI’s ChatGPT tool, we at Sitecore were curious about marketers’ perspectives on GenAI, their use of ChatGPT (or their plans to), what role they believed this new technology would serve and how well it would integrate into existing MarTech stacks. With last year all about the metaverse and GenAI dominating headlines in 2023, marketers are desperately trying to keep up with the pace of innovation despite limited budgets and resource. Are marketers were experiencing tech whiplash based on the rapid pace of innovation in recent years? And how do they best see integrating GenAI solutions into their MarTech stacks in a manageable way?

To get at the heart of these issues, Sitecore surveyed marketers about their views and plans for GenAI. The findings revealed marketers curiosity and resiliency in trying new platforms.

4 in 5 marketers have experimented with ChatGPT

The vast majority (83%) of marketers polled reported experimenting with GenAI/ChatGPT, with over 40% of those who have not tried out the technology yet planning to do so with the next generation of the technology. Similarly, 3 in 4 respondents (74%) were currently investing or thinking about investing in AI to support their marketing and CS strategies, with customer-facing AI tools (31%) ranking at the top of the priority list.

Our survey also found that marketers were planning significant investments in AI-enabled marketing programs, with approximately 20% of respondents stating they plan to allocate 21% to 30% of next year’s budget toward GenAI capabilities. This shift in priorities comes at the expense of last year’s investments in metaverse experiences, as 2 in 5 marketers would remove budget from those programs to support AI deployments.

Other key findings include:

  • CX is No. 1 priority for AI. . More than three-quarters (78%) believe that GenAI will help them get closer to their desired CX, with the ability to drive personalization (75%) and provide deeper insight into customer needs (74%). Marketers also see promise in GenAI’s ability to improve customer loyalty (19%) through AI-enhanced customer service (24%).
  • GenAI squeezes metaverse funds. While we don’t know the ultimate fate of the metaverse, 2 in 5 (38%) marketers plan to shift current investments in the metaverse toward GenAI projects and programs. This is just one example of how the rapid pace of innovation in marketing technology has resulted in financial headaches for marketers, with 76% of all respondents admitting to “constantly” adjusting budgets to accommodate investments in new initiatives.
  • Marketers remain excited. Despite these headaches, 9 in 10 marketers said they are excited about learning about and implementing new technologies, with 77% stating their MarTech stack is equipped to leverage GenAI.

Overall, the findings show that marketers remain remarkably agile and resilient in the wake of continuous evolution and innovation in marketing technology.