Artificial Intelligence | Big Data | Machine Learning

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Businesses Utilizing Artificial Intelligence to Grow Revenue, Personalize Marketing, and Outman Their Competitors

This is part of our on-going series “Why Analytics Matters,” in which we look at how companies use BigData, Analytics and Cloud to power their businesses. This month, we are looking at Artificial Intelligence, a truly transformational technology that allows businesses to reduce waste, grow revenue, and develop deeper relationships with their customers. Artificial intelligence, machine learning, and deep learning: Until recently, they were just buzzwords. The technology was so cutting-edge and expensive that only well-funded companies could afford to hire the talent to put it to proper use. That’s changing – fast. Thanks to the Cloud, businesses big and small can now leverage AI tools with as little as an Internet connection. Today’s tools are much more user friendly too – you don’t need to be a data scientist to use AI today. Take a look at the business landscape today, and you’ll see the way that companies use AI is mind-blowing. AI can facilitate real-time marketing automation – helping companies fine-tune their messaging down to individual users and optimize on the fly. Other science-fiction-esque uses like image recognition, user experience personalization, and predictive modelling – are all made possible by AI and being put to good use by companies across the board. Simply put: Businesses must get on the AI bandwagon now. The ROI is just that compelling, and in a few short years, it’s likely marketers and businesses will wonder how they ever lived without. To give you an idea of what’s possible, we’ve put together five articles from various sources that touch on AI’s most interesting, forward-thinking use cases.

How Harley Davidson Used Artificial Intelligence to Increase New York Sales Leads by 2930% via Harvard Business Review

How Harley Davidson Used Artificial Intelligence to Increase New York Sales Leads by 2930% via Harvard Business Review

Here’s one way artificial intelligence will affect business in the future: Marketing automation. Already, a number of players have developed cutting-edge AI marketing tools that make it possible to optimize and personalize campaigns on the fly. This Harvard Business Review story highlights how one NY-based Harley Davidson dealership began using an AI marketing tool that generated a very compelling ROI. The tool, called Albert, autonomously scanned the dealership’s CRM to find high-value look-alike audiences. From this population, it created micro-segments, and then ran test campaigns for each micro-segment. This all happened quickly. In the past, this would have taken months. Overall, this specific use case showcases the power of AI in marketing: Unlimited variables can be tested and optimization can be rolled out in real-time. For example, the company found that CTAs that included the word “call” performed 447% better than those that didn’t; without AI that insight might not have been uncovered.

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Airbnb’s Secret Weapon Against Hotels: Machine Learning via Inc.

Airbnb’s Secret Weapon Against Hotels: Machine Learning via Inc.

Unlike hotels, Airbnb lists numerous of vacation rentals on its site, and when users shop for bookings, millions of data points are created. Generating insights from all this data – for example, determining how customers interact with and evaluate options – can have a powerful effect on conversion. That’s where Machine Learning comes in. Airbnb has rolled out an advanced AI platform that examines all of these data points created by individual users. Armed with insights that it learns from automated analysis, the platform can personalize listings in real-time – much like how Amazon provides users with suggested items to buy. For example, if you’ve looked at mostly outdoorsy and budget rentals, the results you see would be much different than what another sees who prefers urban rentals. This is all part of Airbnb’s goal of doing personalization at scale, and they’re already seeing results with conversion rates spiking shortly after the AI rollout.

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How AI and Machine Learning Are Helping to Drive the GE Digital Transformation via Forbes

How AI and Machine Learning Are Helping to Drive the GE Digital Transformation via Forbes

Perennial Fortune 500 business General Electric has made Digital Transformation a key to its future success. To that end, they’ve made BigData, Analytics and Artificial Intelligence major pillars of their business moving forward. For example, they’re using AI to capture and learn from data generated by its millions of industrial devices. The technology creates a “digital twin,” a digital representation of the actual machine, which can be used to predict maintenance and reduce or completely eliminate unplanned downtime. But that’s just one example. GE is also using AI and machine learning to optimize its supply chain. The company leveraged a machine learning platform, for instance, to identify discrepancies in pricing across its units. For instance, GE’s appliances division might be being charged one price for 2 cm nuts and bolts, while its renewable energy group receives another. By identifying these variations, GE was able to negotiate better pricing, ultimately saving $80 million in a short amount of time.

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5 Bleeding-Edge Brands That Are Infusing Retail with Artificial Intelligence via AdWeek

5 Bleeding-Edge Brands That Are Infusing Retail with Artificial Intelligence via AdWeek

Here’s a bold prediction: AI will be as transformational as electricity or the Internet. At least that’s what innovation director from Lowe’s Hardware says in this AdWeek cover story. AI is already being integrated into retail and business in a number of truly mind-blowing ways. This piece covers five of the most compelling use cases. Here’s an interesting one: Marchesa, an Italian-based fashion retailer, used IBM’s Watson to design a dress for the MET Gala. The machine learning platform analyzed thousands of dresses to determine the best color, look and shape. Another example: Cosabella, a lingerie retailer, is using AI to personalize its website in real-time. The technology has helped speed up its website testing – allowing 6-12 months of optimization testing to be performed in just 30 days – and it’s already affecting sales. Cosabella says AI has helped them grow sales by 35.6 percent.

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Beer, Bots and Broadcasts: Companies Start Using AI in the Cloud via Bloomberg

Beer, Bots and Broadcasts: Companies Start Using AI in the Cloud via Bloomberg

The Cloud is making AI accessible. What once required a significant investment in hardware, can now be rolled out with as little as an Internet connection and a SaaS subscription. That’s making it easier for small brands to use AI. For instance, Deschutes, an Oregon-based microbrewery, uses a Cloud-based AI platform to monitor production. By learning what works based on historical brewing data, the platform helps them save time, reduce waste and produce fresher beer. But that’s just one example. C-SPAN too has used image recognition to automate its ticker system in live programming; AI tools can correctly identify which government official is speaking on the floor at any given moment. Previously, the TV network had done this manually, and because it was so time-consuming, most of the time they didn’t bother. Aided by AI, C-SPAN has greatly reduced the hours of programming that aren’t notated on screen.

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