Why It Isn’t Always About AI

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We love using new technologies to improve our services.

Recently, we’ve been doing a lot of work with AI. Of course, one of those projects is KISSPlatform, which you can already try for yourself here!

Beyond the platform, we have done a lot of research related to AI, and we’ve been working on patent analysis with Natural Language Processing (NLP). Every day brings an opportunity to use AI to make things easier.

But it’s not always about AI. Sometimes basic analysis tools are really useful.

Improving our messaging

We’re constantly testing our messaging at KISSPatent, KISSPlatform’s sister company. It, of course, requires a lot of trial and error to know what’s working and what’s not. We start any analysis project by checking out the data, just reviewing it. In doing so, we can rapidly see some insights.

Let’s dig into our email messages, specifically.

These months have been complicated, we’re in the middle of a crisis and there’s a lot of uncertainty. Although working from home hasn’t been difficult for us because we’re a remote team, working in the middle of a crisis tests our productivity, and more importantly, our empathy towards others.

Our messaging needed to be precise. It needs to bring certainty to a turbulent time, but most importantly, it needed to be empathetic.

That’s why we decided to make a deeper analysis of the messages we were sending.

Since we love all things AI, I thought we’d have to do a really complicated NLP-based analysis to understand what our community likes and doesn’t like!

How we did it

So first, I decided just to look at which of our emails were most popular — by subject line and content. I graphed that out over time. So it turns out that many of our most popular emails were related to innovation. Just looking at the language of the subject lines and the messages gave a clear result.

NLP might have had a hard time understanding which emails were related to innovation since not all of them had an obvious word like “innovation” in the subject line or text. It was down to us to decide what innovation meant to us at KISSPatent. And once I’d sorted the emails by our philosophy of innovation, it was easy to see which ones were relevant.

What is innovation to us? Creating the future and improving the world through technology.

Despite it all, we’re techno-optimists.

For us, the strongest way to make all of our lives better is through tech. Tech doesn’t have to be complicated to make the world a better place — think about face masks, gloves, and gowns.  We’d really appreciate hearing about what innovation means to you!

Our findings

It actually turned out to be much simpler than what we expected. We discovered (confirmed) that our community likes innovation to make the world a better place. As part of that, our community is currently into COVID-19 related innovations (no surprise there!).

Also, our community likes emojis in the subject line. That was really surprising to me! I’ve always been a bit of a grumpy person when it comes to emojis in an email, especially the subject line — and especially coming from a business. I mean, we’re really fun folks — but idea protection is serious.

Still, it’s great to have fun with innovation and with idea protection — so we’ll work on doing both in the future.

Don’t let AI get in the way of understanding data

The moral of this quick story?

We checked out our data and found out that our community was sending us a message loud and clear. Just by analyzing data, we could understand the interactions with our community, even if we were not talking with people directly.

We didn’t need complicated AI techniques to realize this, we just needed to listen closely. And when doing AI, it’s important to really understand the data first. Manually checking and analyzing data can give great insights as to which direction to go in. Listening to the data results in deeper insights and better understanding.

Plus, AI can’t substitute for human thought. As much as I’d like our AI algorithms to be able to do all our work for us, ultimately they’re just a tool — and one that has a really spotty record of being useful.

Forbes found that 65% of all businesses don’t benefit from their AI investments. Also, last year we found that 40% of European “AI” startups aren’t really creating or applying AI — they just like the trendy buzzword, and of course, the 15 to 50% higher funding it attracts.

When we use AI in our business, we’re doing it thoughtfully, not just because there’s hype around it!

AI is not a buzzword, it’s a tool and it’s very useful if you know how to take advantage of it.

Just throwing AI at problems results in wasted time and money.