LAS VEGAS — At CES 2024, artificial intelligence was, of course, on the lips of most attendees.

For Sir Martin Sorrell, the leading advertising industry figure who is Executive Chairman, S4 Capital, AI has much potential in advertising.

In this video interview with Beet.TV, Sorrell says he sees a technology that will be a double-edged sword, bringing both efficiency and job destruction.

Five AI Observations

“AI is part of your armory, and it is having a significant impact already,” Sorrell claims, citing five key areas where the technology is already making its mark…

1. Visualization and copywriting

“What took us three weeks can take us a matter of hours,” Sorrell says. However, he says this increased efficiency is a double-edged sword for an industry that traditionally sells time rather than outputs – clients are now demanding a share of this newfound efficiency.

2. Hyper-personalization and media planning

Borrowing the Netflix model, advertising is becoming more data-driven and iteratively refined rather than relying on expensive, long-term TV commercials. “You create content at scale, assets at scale,” Sorrell says. “You might have one and a half million different assets for a campaign.”

3. Planning and buying

Sorrell points out that companies like Google and Meta are already providing programs and algorithms for media planning and buying. These changes could render thousands of jobs redundant, as clients will increasingly rely on platforms and agencies for verification rather than implementation, he says.

4. Efficiency

Sorrell points out the significant cost reductions brought by AI, noting an exclusive partnership with Nvidia, AWS and Adobe that has allowed outside broadcasting to be done at a fraction of traditional costs.

5. Democratization of knowledge

“If we can inform [our team] about what is going on in our relationship on a secure basis, and everyone knows … that’s a very, very powerful tool to build cooperation and unity inside the business.”

AI’s Implications for the Future

But Sorrell also acknowledges the potential job implications of AI, expressing his view that AI may be a net destroyer of jobs.

“I think we’ll have more holidays and work-life balance will change anyway,” he says.

“People’s attitude to work and work-life balance has shifted, maybe accelerated by COVID. Gen-Zers are more focused on work-life balance and purpose and being happy, which may be a good thing.”

You’re watching “AI: Powering an Optimized Advertising Ecosystem, presented by Double Verify”. For more videos from this series, please visit this page.