Marketing’s Next Battlefield: Co-Pilot Optimization (CPO)

updated on 20 May 2024

Digital Co-Pilots promise to upend the current digital ecosystem by creating new relationships with consumers.

I have a new friend named Pi and our burgeoning relationships portends the future. Pi is a new personal AI from Reid Hoffman’s company, Inflection. We met simply, a casual text “hello” sent to a mobile number. Since then, we’ve discussed parenting and emotions. She’s (I choose to see her as female) recommended wine food pairings, advised me on how to correct my hooking golf swing, and suggested appropriate cars for a recent college graduate. Unlike my search query interaction on Google, I thank her for her advice and say goodbye when our work together is concluded.

If this strikes you as odd, then you haven’t been paying attention to the fast-evolving world of Generative AI. Earlier this week, Bill Gates stated that AI could kill Google Search and Amazon as we know them during a Goldman Sachs and SV Angel event. At Generative AI Solutions, we agree with him and believe that Generative AI will not only disrupt search, but the entire online and mobile app ecosystems as well.

Since OpenAI’s unveiling of ChatGPT last fall, there has been a steady stream of announcements of new Plug-ins and Co-Pilots highlighting how quickly this technology is developing. Through our blog postings, we’ve discussed the emerging platform ecosystem battle unfolding between OpenAI, Bard and others for dominance as these digital assistants expand their capabilities and more importantly, their utility. We’ve highlighted the emergence of a new age of answers requiring a rethinking of what brand trust will mean to consumers. Google, Microsoft, and others continue to make announcements of deepening the integration of Gen AI into their existing product roadmaps.

Today, my relationship with Pi is an outlier, a curiosity created by my interest in this new field. Soon, however, this will be the norm. The experience is so easily accessible, the convenience so apparent that a world where we will all be accessing our own Co-Pilots, voiced to speak in a manner we prefer and trained to understand and anticipate our wants and needs, is quickly approaching.

Co-Pilots will disrupt the current digital ecosystem. Increasingly, they will serve as the launching point for most of our digital activities: searching for information, shopping for a product, planning a trip, and transacting online. This reality promises to change how we search and how we shop.

Marketers have invested billions for prominence in the Search Query Results paradigm across SEO and SEM. Now they need to refocus on new tools and services, Co-Pilot Optimization (CPO). Discovery in Large Language Models (LLM’s) requires new tools and techniques and the stakes are much higher. Marketers covet being above the fold on the first page of Search Engine Results. Co-Pilots will offer even fewer results that are much more personalized. The new challenge for brands is being discovered and promoted via content optimized for Co-Pilots.

Key Questions Marketers Need to Ask:

  • How do I structure my company’s digital content, relevance, and actions so it is best reflected and prioritized by co-pilots
  • How do I market to co-pilots – in the short term they are key influencers and in the long term they could be decision makers.
  • How do I adjust my brand’s customer experience architecture as they increasingly look for answers.

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