Reaching millions with GfK's award-winning Human vs AI debate

Establishing GfK as an AI thought leader and driving brand awareness through an innovative AI-powered campaign

Positioning GfK as an AI-innovator

AI technology is revolutionising the way GfK does its business. One of GfK’s key products, gfknewron - a single access point that combines market, consumer and brand intelligence - uses AI technology and as such they wanted to be seen as more innovative within the wider AI space.

They sought to create top-of-funnel content that would demonstrate GfK is firmly in touch with the use of AI and demonstrate their understanding of this important area of tech, positioning GfK in the AI space as innovative, lighthearted, and fun as opposed to heady and academic.

As such, a key challenge was to showcase another aspect of the brand personality.

Additionally, ChatGPT had just been released and was trending, but no competitors were talking about it or its formal integration within business. 

Therefore the objective was to establish GfK as a thought leader and expert in integrating AI within its business using the mechanism of a video-driven campaign to drive brand awareness.

GfK's goals: Brand Awareness

  • A corporate brand awareness campaign to grab attention in the marketplace on the super-hot topic of AI/ChatGPT.
  • To build on the perception of GfK as an innovator, tech leader, and to trigger new conversations and acquire new contacts within T&D, FMCG, and other industries
  • To be seen as bold and innovative – GfK will be the first business, and Gonzalo the first CMO, to have a debate with AI.
  • To create internal positive buzz across the entire organisation - to create something fun to be part of.

Pitting GfK's CMO against ChatGPT

To achieve this, the team at Huble worked in collaboration with GfK's internal marketing team. The initiative was spearheaded by Huble's VP of Strategic Marketing Services, Margaret Ady, and GfK's Global Head of Solution & Audience Marketing, Ben Murphy.

Together, they developed a video campaign centred around a debate between GfK’s CMO, Gonzalo Garcia Villanueva, and the latest craze in AI, ChatGPT.

The focus of the debate was on the latest trends and how marketing leaders should pivot based on them, with the aim of answering the question: “Can robots really take over our jobs?”

The debate covered five key marketing questions with the moderator, Margaret Ady, giving a point to the winning answer.

Apart from the video debate, the campaign and paid media plan included various deliverables such as teaser videos for ads/social, landing page copy and mock-up, social media posts and copy, paid search/social posts and copy, collateral content (banners, emailers, newsletters), programmatic advertising, online publications, and B2B influencers. 

These elements worked together to create a comprehensive and impactful campaign that aimed to generate awareness, engage the audience, establish GfK as a leading authority in AI integration, and demonstrate a clear understanding of the marketing persona.

The campaign rollout involved a well-coordinated process. Once the idea was approved, the overall campaign strategy and creative direction were determined. 

This included briefing ChatGPT, leveraging its AI capabilities to enhance the campaign's messaging. 

The AI tools used in GfK's "Human vs AI" campaign

The AI tools used in GfK's "Human vs AI" campaign

To bring the robot to life, the AI-powered video tool Studio D-ID created the animated avatar of Ruby the Robot.

For its voice, 11Labs were utilised, enabling the robot to communicate effectively after the briefing process. 

Additionally, a company called Beatoven was engaged to incorporate AI-generated intro and outro music, ensuring that the campaign fully embraced AI throughout. 

New Leaf was responsible for filming the video, collaborating closely on location, visualising the robot, and coordinating all aspects of production. 

This seamless collaboration resulted in a captivating and cohesive campaign that effectively showcased GfK's innovative approach.

Watch the full debate in the video below.


The impact on GfK's brand awareness




of impressions from ads using only 34% of paid media budget


average LinkedIn campaign quality score

The primary goal of the campaign was to enhance brand awareness, with the key metric being impressions on the landing page 

The campaign surpassed expectations by nearly 2 million impressions. The estimated impressions were projected to be 5 million, but the final count reached an impressive 6.87 million.

Paid ads via Google search and GfK's social platforms proved to be highly effective in generating impressions, accounting for the majority of the campaign's budget allocation.

In fact, these channels accounted for 90% of the total impressions while only accounting for 34% of the budget, underscoring the expertise of Huble's SEM consultancy.

Programmatic ads, implemented through Demandbase, emerged as the second most successful avenue in terms of impressions. 

Notably, this avenue also proved to be cost-efficient, consuming only 15% of the campaign's budget.

Despite their higher cost, publications such as Wired, Campaign, and Emarketer contributed significantly to the campaign's visibility. 

Although they accounted for 30% of the budget, they played a crucial role in reaching the target audience and strengthening brand recognition.

Influencers, while an expensive experiment in relation to their budget share (21%), provided valuable exposure and engagement. 

Although their impact was comparatively lower in terms of impressions, their influence extended beyond mere numbers, fostering meaningful connections with the target audience.

Overall, the campaign's impressive results and strategic allocation of budget across various channels highlighted the effectiveness of the chosen strategies and the campaign's ability to generate widespread brand awareness.


Award recognition

Thanks to the innovative work that went into the Human vs AI campaign, it not only made an impact among GfK's audience and across social media, but also received recognition from several awards.

This includes winning silver at the B2B Marketing Awards in the "Best use of AI" category, alongside numerous accomplished agencies and innovative campaigns, as well as being shortlisted for the UK Agency Awards in the "Best Marketing Campaign (large)" category.

Ben Murphy
Ben Murphy
Global Head, Solution & Audience Marketing, GfK

“This campaign has truly positioned GfK as an AI thought leader, exceeding our expectations in generating brand awareness. With 6.87 million impressions, our strategic use of paid and programmatic ads showcases our commitment to innovation. We're thrilled to solidify our 'Growth from Knowledge' promise, leveraging advanced AI capabilities to drive industry conversations and business growth. Huble was the perfect partner for this campaign, adding their strategic, creative, and execution expertise.”

A deeper dive into the campaign

Want to dive into the nitty gritty of the campaign?


Over the course of two episodes of the ANA Marketing Futures Podcast, Gonzalo Villanueva and Margaret Ady go into all the details that made the campaign happen.

In the first episode, the two share the inspiration behind the idea, dive into the various forms of AI that were used to make Ruby a reality, and how they managed to get ChatGPT to think like a CMO.


The second episode sees Ruby making an appearance, with the team sharing their thoughts on the composite AI’s ability to debate with a real, live CMO.


Who is GfK?

For nearly 90 years, GfK have earned the trust of clients around the world by solving critical questions in their decision-making process.

They fuel their growth by providing a complete understanding of their consumers’ buying behaviour, and the dynamics impacting their markets, brands and media trends.

In 2023, GfK combined with NIQ, bringing together two industry leaders with unparalleled global reach.

With a holistic retail read and the most comprehensive consumer insights - delivered with advanced analytics through state-of-the-art platforms - GfK drives “Growth from Knowledge”.

GfK stands as a leading authority in the integration of AI, leveraging technology to transform decision-making and deliver exceptional results.

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