IBM Highlights Risks of Marketers Using ‘Fishy’ GenAI

IBM, Adobe Warn Marketers Against ‘Fishy’ Generative AI

IBM’s latest campaign, in partnership with Adobe, warns brand managers and CMOs against “fishy” generative AI tools.

IBM teamed up with creative agency Ogilvy and used Adobe Firefly to create vibrant visuals of weird but cute AI-generated aquarium fish, symbolizing the “fishy things” that can happen when using generative AI.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by IBM (@ibm)

We’ve all seen what can be made with AI, and there’s a lot of frenzy around needing to use it, but not much about how you need to be able to trust it,” explained Denise Zurilgen, Ogilvy’s global executive creative director for IBM.

“To bring that message to life, we wanted to make the overall campaign playful and inviting, as well as educational. It’s AI gone wrong, sure, but that doesn’t mean it’s scary or off-putting. It’s just wrong for your brand,” she told Marketing Dive.

The Cautionary Tale of Generative AI

Although the integration of generative AI has opened up new avenues for creativity and efficiency, it can’t be denied that using it also poses many challenges in maintaining brand integrity and customer trust.

This is the basis of IBM and Adobe’s “Trust What You Create” campaign, which includes a “Taxonomy of Fishy AI” that showcases numerous fishes, including:

  • Noncompliant fish
  • Hallucination fish
  • Missing Data
The "Taxonomy of Fishy AI" shows challenges marketers face | Source: IBM/Marketing Dive
The “Taxonomy of Fishy AI” shows challenges marketers face | Source: IBM

During the Adobe Summit held March 26-28, IBM’s campaign took center stage with different interactive activations, culminating in a 90-second takeover of the Las Vegas Sphere.

In the ad, a cute hamster-like fish (the Drift fish) swims at the forefront of other weird-looking fish as they disappear one by one until an accurate depiction of a goldfish is the only one remaining.

“Close enough isn’t close enough for your brand. Trust what you create with GenAI,” the message reads as the goldfish swims around it.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by IBM (@ibm)

The “Trust What You Create” campaign serves as a warning to marketers about the pitfalls of using generative AI, but it also aims to highlight the capabilities of IBM and Adobe’s AI platforms.

“With tools like IBM Watsonx and Adobe Firefly, our clients can tap into the transformative power of AI that is equally trustworthy and reliable,” noted Jonathan Adashek, IBM’s chief communications officer.

“Because — as the ad shows — when you are reproducing assets, whether one or thousands, ‘close enough’ doesn’t cut it,” he concluded.