How Does AI Assist Businesses, Anyway?

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The conversation around AI is hyperbolic to say the least. People claim it will transform a business and revolutionize the future of the economy. What they talk about a lot less, however, is how AI will actually impact a business on a day-to-day basis. As a result, people view AI as something with immense potential but not many practical applications. 

It’s true that the hype around AI is overblown. Plus, AI advocates do a less-than-stellar job explaining the benefits of this technology in real-world terms. But it’s also true that those benefits are real and already improving companies large and small. Here are just a few of examples of how. 

Wal-Mart – To Process Transaction Records 

It’s not surprising that one of the world’s largest retailers takes in a ton of data on a daily basis. For a company like Wal-Mart, success depends on being able to integrate and analyze that data for trends and insights. Given its volume, however, that would take an impossible amount of human input and manual labor. Relying on AI instead allows millions of transaction records to be organized and understood in just seconds. Despite the immense size of Wal-Mart, AI allows it to monitor operations in real-time. 

Univision – To Create Targeted Campaigns 

Media companies like Univision face intense competition for an audience. Reaching every potential viewer requires very targeted ad campaigns, but once again the scale is a problem. Treating every viewer like an individual is just not feasible, but AI offers a solution. Univision relies on AI to streamline all the data it has on users. Those insights reveal what types of advertising would appeal to which types of viewers. Thanks to these insights, Univision is able to spend less on marketing while enjoying a larger ROI. 

General Electric – To Predict Repairs 

Performing routine maintenance in an industrial setting is a double-edged sword. Doing things too early wastes time and money on unnecessary maintenance. Conversely, waiting too long puts equipment at risk of expensive failure. General Electric is trying to solve this age-old problem using AI. The right artificial intelligence architecture can observe when performance is in decline and failure is likely. That way maintenance happens when it’s necessary, not on an arbitrary schedule. 

Sephora – To Customize The Customer Experience 

Retailers everywhere are scrambling to compete with online outlets. Online shopping offers consumers tremendous freedom and control, qualities retailers are trying to recreate in-store. Sephora has been able to drive in-store sales through a clever application of AI called Color IQ. The surface of the skin is scanned, then AI recommends Sephora products customized for each individual. This experience is both novel and helpful, creating a powerful incentive for people to shop in-store again and again.  

The companies on the this list are global brands, but AI is not exclusive to the top. In reality, solutions have dropped in price and complexity in recent years. And in spite of that accessibility, they are even more beneficial and impactful than before. AI has evolved from a possibility into a reality. The wait is over for companies ready to move forward.


I hope you enjoyed this article about how AI and machine learning can assist your business in a variety of ways.

Interested in more articles about artificial intelligence?

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