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The Term "A.I." Increases Willingness to Pay | Sales Automation

Patrick Campbell Aug 22 2018

In the last two decades our conception of A.I. has essentially been that of a Spielberg script or a Robin Williams performance - robots taking over the world. Yet, artificial intelligence and its baby cousin machine learning have actually had impressive advancements for everything from cybersecurity and healthcare to marketing and robotics.

Some of us use AI for evil though - not in creating bicentennial men and women, but as puffery in our marketing to confused consumers who just buy into the hype. So to answer Kevin’s question, we designed a pricing experiment with 10 and a half thousand software buyers.





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We asked a control group their willingness to pay for a fake sales automation product. We then asked a demographically congruent group about the same sales product, but with a variation of “with “Artificial intelligence” in the marketing copy. We changed nothing, but the marketing copy.

We found that if you include A.I. in your copy, it will boost willingness to pay by essentially 10-15%. For better or for worse, when just mentioning machine learning, willingness to pay basically didn’t move.


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What does this say about humanity? I don’t know if I’m qualified to answer that question, but this isn’t really anything new when it comes to marketing speak. There’s hype and over time consumers will get more educated and the impact of the marketing speak will diminish. So, for now if you’re using AI or machine learning, put it in your marketing copy, but make sure you have the product to back it up and you’re not just selling snake oil.

Well, that's all for now. If you have a question, ship me an email or video to and let's also thank Kevin from Refract (who has good AI) for sparking this research by clicking the link below to share and give him a shoutout. We’ll see you next week.

By Patrick Campbell

Founder & CEO of ProfitWell, the software for helping subscription companies with their monetization and retention strategies, as well as providing free turnkey subscription financial metrics for over 20,000 companies. Prior to ProfitWell Patrick led Strategic Initiatives for Boston-based Gemvara and was an Economist at Google and the US Intelligence community.

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