As a retail assistant, I often have periods of downtime where there is absolutely no customer in the store, no stock to handle or no customer traffic at all. You can imagine that by standing there thinking about absolutely nothing would make me bored out of my brains. So what did I do? I picked up a SmartWatch we have on sale and started talking to it.
“Ok Google” “ .. “What is the weather in Greece” .. “How many days until summer”…
So there I am in my own little world, standing in a store talking to a watch to past the painstaking time.
It led me to think about the various platforms of Artificial Intelligence that have been employed within the market. Through these smart watches, artificial intelligence can be considered as a ‘virtual personal assistant’. But how does it work ? This ‘assistant’ will respond to my voice command by finding information and delivering it to me or if I wanted to open up an app, it’ll send commands to the app. And this is all done by just talking to a stainless steel object..
Imagine the endless options in technology if we were able to talk to an object and they’d be able to respond to us to an extent. It gives rise to the question of: how AI can be used in business’.
Frank Palermo, executive vice president of a global digital solutions company, has stated that:
Retail industries in particular can utilise artificial intelligence in a way that would enhance a consumers buying purchases or products that are shown to them. Through AI and interacting with the system, a smartphone for example is able to learn your preferences and pull data from that interaction to seek buying trends and behaviour.
For example, if i was in my store, asking about Italian restaurants and proceeded to ask “show me restaurants nearby”, the data that the watch would have collected from my past questions would most likely cater to showing me Italian restaurants that are nearby as one of the first preferences.
Palermo also suggests that people who usually ignore emails and in app notifications that are sent during the day, open them when they are at home and within an hour the AI system has picked this up, adjusted to this new situation and initiated promotional material during appropriate hours and even reduced the number of messages if convenient.
By reaching consumers at a time where it is the most convenient has the potential to increase sales, so why wouldn’t AI be beneficial to a company?