We’re all idiots.


AI is still something of a mystery. How does it work? What does it mean for the marketing and comms industry? I don’t know about you, but I feel like an idiot sometimes.   

If you are reading this and thinking “that might be me” then let me break it to you gently. You are an idiot. We all are. The question is: what type of idiot are you?  

Apparently, there are four states of human competence. Consciously competent, consciously incompetent, unconsciously competent, and – the real killer – unconsciously incompetent.  

I’m in constant fear of being unconsciously incompetent. More worryingly, I probably am most of the time and don’t know it. Which is rather the point. 

But there is one thing I will happily say I am not. Deluded.  

I’m asked questions, daily, by colleagues, clients and contacts. “What are we doing with AI?” “How can we make creative quicker and cheaper with AI?” “We need to announce something about AI!” “XXXX agency just released its new AI product. Is it all smoke and mirrors?” 

This constant struggle to jump on a bandwagon is past the point of being embarrassing and has moved into desperation. I get it. People are scared re: what they don’t know. But fear should lead to listening, learning and building. Not rushing to use whatever AI tool we can find through a quick Google search.  

Any use of AI should follow the principles of all technology or creative solutions. What is the problem you are trying to solve? Let that lead you.  

Have you ever noticed that people rarely suggest how AI can support or even replace elements of their own work? They only look at everyone else. Why? Because they’re scared.  

What’s the best way of navigating through all this? The answer is to be an idiot. But be the right kind of idiot. Be consciously incompetent. Know that you don’t know enough. None of us do. Ask questions. Read. Watch. Learn… 

…perhaps join the upcoming event on AI in Marketing hosted by TEAM LEWIS.  

Embrace being an idiot and use it to help up you grow. AI is here. Be ready for it.  

Our creative and technology teams are constantly using AI in all its forms. But not with our clients’ data. And not in a way that is desperate for attention. 

For now, we are learning. And we are building. We are testing, failing, learning, and progressing. And when we’re ready, we will use it in partnership with our clients. Some of which are already willingly joining us on our voyage of discovery.  

So don’t be afraid to be an idiot like me. Just make sure you’re the right kind of idiot. And keep learning. I know I will. 

If you’d like to hear more, join TEAM LEWIS at its AI in Marketing event on 4 June. Places are limited. Click on this link to register. https://www.teamlewis.com/uk/ai-in-marketing/

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