I had the pleasure of attending Cvent Connect, a prominent conference for events and marketing professionals held in London last week. Can you guess what the hottest topic for debate was? You’re right, it was none other than AI and Tech!

For marketing and communications professionals, the AI revolution presents both compelling opportunities and significant challenges. On one hand, AI-driven technologies like chatbots, predictive analytics, and stronger personalisation can enhance digital marketing, and more importantly, the user experience by making it more interactive and customised to an individual viewer. On the other hand, the integration of AI calls for a new set of skills, as well as creative and legislative concerns.

We will come on to the debate… but my innate opinion is that it is more important than ever that marketing professionals must become adept at navigating tech-heavy environments, interpreting data insights, and maintaining a human touch in an increasingly automated world. As technology continues to evolve at breakneck speed, it’s clear that the ability to adapt and learn will be key for marketing and communications professionals in the AI era. Adaptation and flexibility are paramount.

So… the great debate at the conference, People versus Technology!

Imagine a room, electric with anticipation, and probably the busiest of the conference. The stage is set for a debate that encapsulates the zeitgeist of our era. A face-off is about to commence, People versus Technology. Picture it as a political duel, two podiums are set, with one side trumpeting the ingenious efficiency and power of technology, and the other, resolutely championing the irreplaceable magic of human touch and emotion.

Can you feel the tension? Are my emotive marketing skills working? ;-)

The debate opens calmly, with both sides having 5 minutes to introduce why they (in their opinion) are in the right. But of course, the debate slides and turns, and inevitably veers into the realm of AI, the modern-day wonder reshaping our professional landscape, a poignant moment unfolds…

A content writer hears, “I wouldn’t hire copywriters in the new world, I would hire a copy proofer. AI can write all my content.” This statement ricochets across the room, sparking an ‘engaged’ retort. It’s clear: the audience resonates more deeply with the human factor than the precision of technology alone.

Stop to think… Can AI write emotive blogs? Can it research and apply critical analysis? I have yet to see one that does it effectively. AI is an incredible planning and initial creation tool in my opinion yes, can it write like me? No, I don’t think it can.

Maybe the audience was more on the creative marketing side of the industry… but it was clear the hearts and minds of the room are won over by Team People, with the Copywriter in the room getting that all important human support.

But is the argument that clear I felt myself ask, as I sipped on my (now very cold) coffee… Is it so clear cut to vote either People or Technology?

In our AI-driven age, I personally believe that technology serves as a powerful tool, a trusted partner to professionals in events and marketing, rather than a substitute for human ingenuity and creativity. The ongoing debate only strengthens my conviction that technology should complement and enhance human capabilities, rather than overshadow them.

Enter the Cylons… 🤖 (Sorry, only Battlestar Galactica fans will get that…)

And the people have voted…

The debate’s outcome clearly leaves a lasting impression: a whopping 80% of the audience sides with Team People, and a meagre 20% with Team Tech. It’s a resounding testament to the prevailing sentiment that despite technological strides, the human touch, emotional intelligence, creativity intuition, and adaptability retain immense value.

In the end, the debate provoked a revelation…

As we stride into the not-so-distant future, let’s bear in mind that in the epic age-old saga of People vs. Technology, the real triumph lies not in opposition but in their harmonious collaboration. Each enhancing the other’s capabilities in this ever-evolving dance of technological progress. Together, humans and technology can weave a tapestry of endless possibilities, propelling us towards a future brimming with innovation and unparalleled growth, but with a human touch of course…

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