Artificial Intelligence and DaaS Markets and Trends

Disrupting Business as Usual: AI’s CoPilot, Concierge, and Super Agent

How AI Assistants Are Revolutionizing Marketing and Commerce
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The era of autonomous AI agents is rapidly approaching, poised to radically reshape marketing and commerce as we know it. Within the next few years, AI “CoPilots,” “Concierges,” and “Super Agents” will become powerful personal assistants that remove the need for consumers to click or code their way through technology. Instead, these AI helpers will enable users to simply ask systems to perform tasks, make purchases, manage projects, and more through intuitive conversational interfaces.

This blog explores how the advent of AI marketing assistants and autonomous Super Agent platforms will dramatically boost productivity, transform customer engagement models, redefine data ownership dynamics, and ultimately re-platform the entire economy into an intelligent, AI-driven marketplace.

CoPilots, Concierges, And Super Agents: AI’s New Tri-Force of Commerce

Artificial intelligence is poised to revolutionize the economy by re-platforming various industries. CoPilots, Concierges, and Super Agents represent innovative forms of powerful personal assistants that eliminate the necessity for coding or manual interaction with technology. Instead, they empower users to simply request actions from systems, whether it’s task execution, project management, making purchases, and beyond.

In simple terms,

  • CoPilots are digital assistants evolved into co-workers
  • Concierges are personal assistants evolved into brand ambassadors
  • Super Agents are personal shoppers evolved into lifelong companions

No later than 2026, IDC expects consumer AI Super Agents running on smartphones to support $500B of economic activity in less than 10 years – faster than the internet, mobile, or social did.

CoPilots, Tomorrow’s New Co-Workers

CoPilots will enable marketers to ask: “Build a campaign for our new product launch”, and AI will produce everything needed to execute – schedules, workflows, audience segments, customer journeys, creative, offers, pricing, and metrics. It will test and optimize everything in flight and measure and report on results, conversing with marketers throughout the process.

IDC expects these capabilities to result in a more than 40% productivity improvement for entire marketing organizations. As a result, some jobs will disappear, others will expand, and organizational structures, job descriptions, and required skills will change dramatically.

Sam Altman has been quoted as saying in the next 5-7 years, AGI will do 95% of the creative work marketing teams do and the work they hire outside services to do for them.

Meet Your New Personal Assistant: The Concierge

Concierges are AI-powered agents built by brands to assist customers. IDC expects to see AI Concierges proliferate in 2025. Brands will embed concierges into their mobile apps and web sites. AI substantially raises their ability to assist and advise consumers in a conversational way. But digital concierges supplied by individual brands will have inconsistent quality and usability issues. Branded concierge agents are owned and operated by brands and therefore do amend the problem of consumer data ownership and privacy protections.

While AI Concierges will proliferate, they are not likely to be a long-term consumer preference once Super Agents become available. However, they will be essential to brands’ ability to engage, negotiate, and transact with consumer Super Agents in autonomous AI marketplaces.

Super Agents, Your New Lifelong Companions

Super Agents will be the killer app of AI-powered smartphones. IDC expects that by 2026, AI will emerge as the next platform of global commerce. Super Agents will be widely available and capable of managing every aspect of consumer commercial activity. Users will be able to fully customize their agents from gender, language/accent, personality traits, how proactive or passive they are, what information and activities they are allowed to track and share (birthdays, holidays, purchase histories, brand preferences, medical and financial records, etc.) Agents will learn by monitoring user behavior and by conversing with users, making them even more intuitive than managing a Spotify playlist.

Consumer adoption will be similar in speed and scale to search, mobile, and social media, each of which scaled rapidly because they put the power of the platform in the palm of your hand, and because scale scales upon scale. This is not to suggest an all or nothing transformation. Super Agents will be another form of commerce and like search, mobile and social, they will encroach on but not completely displace existing forms of retail or digital interactions. Super Agents will do everything that apps and search do while hiding those tasks from the user’s experience. Apps and search capabilities will still be needed behind the scenes and users can always opt to use them if they wish. Super Agents will be ever present, intuitive, and able to research, recommend, and purchase anything – saving consumers and brands money, time, and aggravation. Consumers will be able to ask things such as:

  • “Here’s what my family wants to eat this week get the best deals ready for pick up at 6:30 tomorrow night.”
  • “Save me $100 on my monthly food bill and cut down our sugar intake by 10%.”
  • “Suggest several [beach, ski, etc.] vacation options for my family for less than $5,000 in June.”
  • “Create a financial plan for our first house purchase.”
  • “Find the best doctor for my child’s illness.”

AI can converse with consumers throughout these activities (and throughout their daily lives.) Talking to your Super Agent may become the next form of journaling.

Through Super Agents, consumers will be able to programmatically tell brands which products they are in-market for, when, and under what terms. Which products have “no substitutes” tags and which substitutes will be considered. Brands will no longer have to make massive investments in data and compute to know how hard to compete for whose business.

The biggest paradigm shift for brands and advertisers is that Super Agent markets will monetize on sales commissions not ad impressions which are irrelevant to AI buyers.

But Super Agents will be equally able to communicate with ad networks making it possible to personalize ads on any media more accurately than ever. Imagine being able to send personalized ads over any medium, including CTV to enhance how your customer uses a specific product of yours. Instead of generically shilling beverage, pharma, and CPG products to everyone, you can create an ad that reminds a person to take their meds, ask about any side effects they may be experiencing, suggest lifestyle or dietary habits that would speed their recovery. Or recommend new features of your digital service that may be underutilized. Or ask them to swipe or click on which product design they like better for your new spring clothing line.

Super Agents require the industry to irrigate the consumer data desert. Ironically, consumers retain far less data about commercial activities than brands and ad networks do. The paper receipt must be relegated to the trash heap of history (clay tablets anyone?) so consumers can have all the data needed for Super Agents to learn and represent them most effectively in the market. Open data sharing with consumers may be the greatest mindset shift required for everyone locked into today’s economic model but the payoff for doing so will be dominating the next digital economy.

Importantly, Super Agents will track and protect users’ personal information, disclosing only what is necessary or approved by their user to garner better deals and services. They will track what personal data gets shared with which commercial entities, manage consent agreements, and make requests for data records and deletion. Super Agents eliminate the need for cookies because they can declare intent to ad networks and marketplaces. This will make consumer privacy protection both more important and more effective.

A New Engagement Model For AI

As Super Agents proliferate, marketers and advertisers will have to build new engagement models for AI buyers and influencers. Advantages will go to those that respond to agent bids with the greatest speed and personalization; build progressive incentives to influence the agent to either buy or escalate to their user; engage in trusted transactions; deliver on product, logistics, and support expectations; use all means of communication to progressively improve the personal and/or professional lives of every individual customer. That last one is the key to differentiation. Humans are almost always willing to pay a premium for trust and for better emotional outcomes over better economic ones.

As AI re-platforms the economy there will be novel emergent opportunities for marketers and advertisers to completely rethink their roles in marketplaces and how they conduct their relationships with customers human and AI alike.

Gerry Murray is a Research Director with IDC’s Marketing and Sales Technology service where he covers marketing technology and related solutions. He produces competitive assessments, market forecasts, innovator reports, maturity models, case studies, and thought leadership research.