Measuring the Accuracy of our Predictions

Along with Santa Claus, decking halls, and being jolly, tis the season for prognosticating. Having written some version of a “My Predictions” list for the last 25+ years, I decided that before I went out on a limb for 2024, I’d do a bit of measurement of my own. So I brought in my good pal “Bard AI” to see how accurate I’d been at the beginning of 2023. The good news was that none of mine made Bard’s  WORST predictions of  2023. But it didn’t exactly give me an A. (My predictions are in bold. Bard’s responses are in italics.”

My first prediction was that “AI and machine intelligence will revolutionize how we measure our impact.”

Bard didn’t agree, but it did get a bit self-aggrandizing: “While AI and machine learning are not yet a complete replacement for human judgment, they are becoming more sophisticated and can provide valuable insights that can help marketers and communicators make better decisions.”  

It also nixed my prediction that data analytics would be a requirement for a communications degree, saying “While there is a growing demand for data analytics skills in the communications field, it is not yet common for data analytics to be a required course in communications degree programs.”   Okay, fine, I’m still holding out hope.

It did, however, back me up in places it mattered. It judged as accurate my prediction that competitive measurement audits would become more frequent. As marketing and communications budgets become more constrained, companies are increasingly looking for ways to measure the ROI of their communications efforts. This has led to an increased demand for audits that can provide insights into the effectiveness of campaigns and identify areas for improvement.

What was fascinating was that some of the predictions that I thought were the most unrealistic, (and based entirely on gut feeling,) it found most accurate.

Bard agreed that “Earned media and content creators will be given a larger share of corporate budgets.”  It reported that: As marketers and communicators look for ways to measure the ROI of their communications efforts, they are increasingly turning to earned media and content creators. This has led to an increase in the funding for these areas.

By this time, I’m starting to wonder if Bard might just be programmed to agree with me (or was reading my blog for the answers.) I found myself thrilled when it concurred with my prognostication that the marketing funnel is getting leakier, leading to tighter integration of communications efforts. It added: “The marketing funnel is becoming increasingly leaky, as consumers are exposed to more and more advertising and marketing messages. This makes it more important than ever for companies to have a unified communications strategy that spans all channels.”

I also went out on a limb to predict that “More and more brands are realizing that they can get more coverage and get their messages out more effectively if they partner with either an organization to get their CSR stories out there, or with another brand to leverage synergy.” Bard apparently agreed, saying that partnerships can help companies to reach a wider audience, gain access to new markets, and amplify their messages.”

Not sure you can see “eye-to-eye” with a bot, but we were also on the same proverbial page about  the importance of “employer branding” — which apparently continues to grow. “In a competitive job market, employer branding is more important than ever. This is because it can help companies to attract and retain top talent.”

I also predicted the growth of podcasts and other channels, which Bard’s data apparently found accurate. “Podcast use is still growing, and new platforms are emerging all the time. This is making it more important than ever for marketers and communicators to understand how to reach their audience on these platforms.

By this time, I was starting to wonder if Bard should be added to the IPR’ s Measurement Commission. On “reach, impressions, and engagement” it reported that: these metrics are becoming less important as marketers and communicators move away from vanity metrics and focus on more meaningful measures of success.  Okay, now I know Bard reads my blog. 

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