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Why GenAI Will Disrupt Search Marketing

Legacy search engine marketing best practices are vulnerable. Why now? Generative AI (GenAI) capabilities are being rapidly adopted for technology sector marketing efficiency gains.

To prepare for more shifts beyond their direct control, tech product marketers must address disruptions in key marketing channels, engagement approaches, and required investments.

The savvy business-to-business (B2B) CMOs are already piloting and deploying GenAI tools.

GenAI Tools B2B Market Development

By 2026, traditional search engine volume will drop by 25 percent, with search marketing losing market share to AI chatbots and other virtual agents, according to the latest market study by Gartner. 

"Organic and Paid Search are vital channels for tech marketers seeking to reach awareness and demand generation goals," said Alan Antin, vice president at Gartner.

Now GenAI solutions are becoming substitute answer engines, replacing user queries that previously may have been executed in traditional web search engines.

This transition will force tech companies to rethink their marketing channel strategy as GenAI becomes more embedded across all aspects of the enterprise.

With GenAI driving down the cost of producing content, there is also an impact on other activities -- including search keyword strategy and website domain authority scoring.

Search engine algorithms will further value the 'quality' of content assets to offset the sheer amount of AI-generated content, as content utility and quality still reign supreme for success in Organic Search results.

According to the Gartner assessment, there will also be a greater emphasis placed on GenAI watermarking and other means to authenticate high-value content creation.

Government regulations across the globe are already holding tech companies accountable as they begin to require the identification of marketing content assets that GenAI tools create.

This will likely play a role in how web search engines will display digital business content. Content ranking will be transformed.

Outlook for Generative AI Applications Growth

"Companies will need to focus on producing unique content that is useful to customers and prospective customers," concludes Antin.

Marketing content should continue to demonstrate helpful content quality-rater elements such as domain expertise, industry experience, authoritativeness, and source trustworthiness.

That said, I believe the rapid adoption of GenAI tools will separate the most progressive product marketers from their peer group. It's an inflection point that will create a scenario where "fast followers" miss the current window of opportunity. Later catch-up may be elusive.

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