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    Summit Spotlight: Infusing AI Into the DNA of Your Content Strategy

    May 24, 2024
    8 minute read
    Summit Spotlight: Infusing AI Into the DNA of Your Content Strategy

    Infusing artificial intelligence (AI) into your content strategy can shorten workflows, save hundreds of hours of manual labor, and improve time to market.

    Pam Perino, digital content operations and development manager at Ghirardelli, and Rebekka Meyers, director of content and creative at UMA Home Decor, have seen firsthand how groundbreaking AI can be for a business.

    Perino and Meyers shared their AI success stories at the 2024 Digital Shelf Summit, with tips and tricks for implementing your own AI content strategy.

    How Can AI Improve Your Content Strategy?

    UMA Home Decor and Ghirardelli have different AI content strategy approaches, but both have had massive success.

    UMA Home Decor Drastically Improves Time to Market  

    UMA Home Decor has approximately 10,000 online products — spread out across many different sites — that all require copy to sell online, says Meyers.

    Every year, UMA also introduces 1,000 to 2,000 new products. Writing product copy for just 1,000 products could take up to six months. To make matters more stressful, it only takes three months for products to arrive in the warehouse, which means that these products are untouched until their product copy is ready.

    This backlog of content was causing UMA to lose precious time in getting their products to market. AI was the answer. 

    “We were able to reduce our production of content from six months to six weeks,” Meyers says. “We’re already caught up from our December introduction, which is the first time ever.”

    “Finally, we get to look back at all the content we’ve made for the past eight years … and we can update it, get those [search engine optimized] SEO keywords in there … We’re really excited about what we can do next with AI,” she adds.

    Previously, seven people could get 150 product items done per week. Now, with the introduction of AI, four people can get 400 items done in a week. In addition to catching up with the backlog, UMA can now shift its attention to elevating its enhanced content.

    Ghirardelli Creates Conversion-Driving Hero Images 

    Ghirardelli wanted to improve their image heroes while remaining GS1 compliant.

    Perino emphasizes that the company also wanted its image heroes to be applicable for Walmart, which is “a little more flexible on their heroes” as well as Amazon and Target, which have been “a little more strict about their hero images.”

    “We really wanted a way to … Measure how effective our current hero images and image carousels are and help us determine where there is opportunity to improve … We knew that we needed to continue to evolve and elevate what we were doing,” says Perino.

    So, they partnered with visual analytics company Vizit to use its AI tool. “Their tool is amazing … it really gives us the ability to see content curated through audience lenses, and understand where attention will be garnered and discover changes we can make to improve our effectiveness and improve our content,” Perino says.

    With these changes in place, Ghirardelli saw a 61% increase in dollar growth versus pre-optimization. 

    How To Overcome AI Hesitations 

    Introducing AI is often met with hesitation — will it replace human workers?

    “You still need to have human intervention,” Perino says. “It’s a machine. It’s not perfect, it’s not going to be perfect. If we can get 85–95% copy, so to speak, and then we do manual editing here and there, I’m happy … for us, that’s perfect.”

    Additionally, Perino says putting protocols in place helps ensure that content meets regulatory and legal requirements.

    “We still have our same protocols in place where the first review goes to me, [the] second review goes to the appropriate brand manager on the marketing team, and the final stamp of approval before it would ever go live on a website is my regulatory team,” she says.

    Meyers agrees that there needs to be a review process in place.

    “Always review what comes out, don’t assume what comes out will be 100% correct and that you can put it directly on your site,” she says. “We’re not replacing people. Look into what you already have. Maybe the company you already partner with already has some AI capabilities that will ease you into it.”

    If your company is on the fence about implementing AI, creating a watertight order of operations that ensures copy is correct and human-sounding will ease concerns.

    Infuse AI Into Your Content Strategy With Ease 

    While AI is a useful tool, it requires a watchful eye. Meyers recommends starting with one sentence at a time to grow your prompt. Over time, you’ll finetune it to get exactly what you’re looking for — but the work doesn’t stop there. Her team meets every week to discuss any tweaks that need to be made.

    Whatever your AI content strategy approach may be, it can boost your content's effectiveness, drive audience engagement, and help you adapt to evolving trends, making it an indispensable part of your organization's content DNA.


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    Written by: Madeline Koufogazos

    Madeline Koufogazos (she/her) is an editor and writer at Salsify, based out of Boston. She enjoys sharing her insights on consumer trends and behaviors, commerce, media, pop culture, and travel.

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