Sena Yaptangco

By: Sena Yaptangco

Published On: November 14, 2023
3.1 min read

Is AI Engine Optimization the Future?

Is AI Engine Optimization the Future? According to Jeremiah Owyang, a seasoned industry analyst, investor, and founder, the era of Bill Gates’ vision for personal AI is swiftly approaching. This impending future is poised to disrupt the landscape of SEO and e-commerce. It is compelling marketers and creators to move beyond the conventional optimization of traditional search engines and embrace the optimization of AI. Owyang stressed that this paradigm shift demands strategic planning to anticipate disruption and devise innovative approaches.

“The current advertising model, centered around attracting website visitors, is on the cusp of transformation. Sustaining this model appears increasingly untenable,” Owyang remarked.

AI agents and foundational models will seize the advertising revenue in this new landscape. This happens as marketers pay to integrate their messages into generated responses. Owyang envisions a future where “sponsored sentences” might emerge within AI-generated content. Additionally, advertisements could be seamlessly incorporated alongside generated material. He emphasizes that marketers and creators must shift their focus from merely being discoverable on search engines to being discoverable within the AI ecosystem.

From influencing search engines to AI Engine Optimization

Transitioning from influencing search engines to AI agents, Owyang observes that traditional web crawling might become less effective. This is due to consumers increasingly relying on GPT (Generative Pre-trained Transformer) tools for information retrieval. Because of this, they bypass conventional marketing and news platforms. Owyang acknowledges the challenges arising from the diverse data schemas in this context.

To navigate this evolving landscape, marketers and creators must consider an unconventional strategy: actively enabling Large Language Models (LLMs) to learn from their data. Owyang draws parallels between this concept and SEO strategies, suggesting that providing LLMs with relevant content, akin to influencing traditional search algorithms, could position one’s content favorably within the AI-generated content realm.

Owyang’s perspective stems from the historical pattern of disruptions that marketers have experienced over the years. From the inception of Google search, marketers have adapted their approaches to influence various influencers, from journalists to industry analysts. With the ascent of AI, marketers must now cater to a new category of influencers: AI agents hungry for information.

This transformation prompts considerations about adapting content for AI agents. Owyang envisions the development of APIs specifically designed to accommodate foundational AI models, leading to a potential reevaluation of the central importance of websites. This may entail offering APIs as a primary interaction channel, fostering efficient engagement with autonomous agents.

The future of a personal AI

Bill Gates, a proponent of personal AI, has asserted that the first company to pioneer a personal agent disrupting SEO would gain a competitive advantage. Owyang cites this sentiment to explain Gates’ involvement and other notable investors in Inflection AI’s substantial funding round. Inflection AI’s launch of “Pi,” an AI chatbot designed to offer empathetic, personalized interactions, underscores the ongoing evolution of AI’s role in user engagement.

Owyang envisions a future where brands possess autonomous agents that engage with consumers’ agents. This collaboration could extend to negotiating preferences, such as car choices, restaurant selections, and more, transcending mere information retrieval.

Contrasting AI Engine Optimization with traditional SEO, Owyang outlines the divergent strategies required. AI Engine Optimization calls for real-time data feeds to foundational models via APIs. Additionally, brands may need to employ corporate APIs to train branded AI. These interact with consumers’ agents and adapt to evolving buyer-side agents.

Evidence of this transformation is already emerging. Brands contemplate creating their LLMs for enhanced interactions with customers and their AI agents. Owyang underscores that corporations are rapidly exploring the potential of building their LLMs, signaling a readiness to adapt to the changing landscape.

Owyang’s call to action for marketers is to evolve beyond influencing human decision-making and actively shape AI behaviors. Recognizing the imminent seismic shift that will redefine the marketing landscape.