4 Tips To Boost Your Business Performance With Artificial Intelligence
Since its debut with the first programmed computers in the 1940s, artificial intelligence (AI) has fascinated and scared every generations. Today, almost everyone is using AI programs even if they don’t realize it. In fact, it’s not exactly what pop culture conditioned us to expect. No Terminator and Skynet, no seductive Samantha or Machines feeding on humans’ heat and electrical activity.
But if you look around, you see that chatbots, Google assistant, Siri, and other weather forecast systems are now part of our everyday life. And all of them are AI-powered systems: not as alarming as we expected. So, what is AI? To make it simple, it is a machine’s ability to replicate human intelligence, ie. its cognitive functions to learn and solve problems. There are several subsets to AI, like natural language processing (NLP), or machine learning, that gives computers the ability to teach themselves. This is possible thanks to deep learning, a technique based on neural networks that facilitates learning at multiple layers, and that has revolutionized analytics and enabled practical applications of AI – namely in business intelligence (BI).
Let’s go over the various applications of AI in business intelligence.
1- Power Your BI Strategy With AI
As IBM Senior VP for Research and Solutions, Dr. John Kelly III, once stated: the success of AI will not be measured by Turing tests, or a machine’s capacity to imitate humans; but it will be measured by more practical ways like the ROI evolution of a company, the new market opportunities they find, or the lives saved and diseases cured.
In business intelligence, AI can be integrated in analytics software that will derive insights from the data collected. A good software will use intelligent data alerts that will learn from historical data, identify trends and patterns in the sets, and predict the next value. By evaluating the difference between the predicted and the actual next value, a data alert will be triggered if the degree of anomaly is off the fluctuation margin determined by the AI algorithm behind the alert.
2- AI In Marketing
Another function that will – and probably already is – revolutionized by artificial intelligence is the marketing department. Marketing’s main role is to increase brand awareness, boost sale and have profit-generating campaigns. With so much data collected every day in need to be cleaned, understood, and analyzed, there is no doubt that AI will become the cornerstone of marketing.
Its application can be in a first part to automate repetitive tasks, like email marketing or social media management. That way, marketers can use their skills to tasks with more added-value. AI can also help generate content faster: a novel co-authored by an AI program already passed the first round of a literary prize; why stop there? Content creation software are starting to bloom, and AI is powering their algorithm capable of analyzing a topic, researching the best resources and writing said article. Besides, AI will never produce plagiarized texts!
Finally, AI modeling and simulation techniques will help getting accurate insights into a buyer persona. These methods can be used to predict consumer behaviour, and anticipate changes in demand thanks to reliable, up-to-date data.
3- AI In Finance
Like any other sector, finance as been disrupted and reshaped with the arrival of the digital era. The number and value of fintech companies never stops growing, and the debut of cryptocurrencies disrupted the sector even more.
Artificial Intelligence helps both startups and big financial companies in making trade easier and safer. Paris-based startup Walnut Algorithms for instance aims to create an AI engine producing strategies with 100% ROI. Machine learning will also help preventing fraud, by analyzing user behavior and evaluate if an action is fraudulent. Finally, AI can help customizing investment plans adjusted to the client, choosing the best assets and adapting to the market trends.
4- AI In Customer Support
Last but not least, an obvious application of AI is in the Customer Support department, where it has already grown exponentially over the past years. Interactions between an institution and its clients are often redundant and so are the issues faced by customers; having an AI chatbot in place that can address the most basic issues, at any time of the day and not subjected to the 9-to-5 business hours can greatly help companies in retaining customers.
By learning from the issues they receive, AI algorithms can answer more and more requests. And thanks to NLP (Natural Language Processing), their interaction can improve by the day. Of course, not every issue can always be solved by a machine, and human interaction will still be needed. However, by freeing support agent from basic, easy-to-solve tickets, they can focus on more important issues where they can bring their added-value.
Undeniably, artificial intelligence is here to stay – more specifically, to grow. Tech genius Elon Musk predicts that humans and robots will merge in the future, even if he warns about potential drifts and dangers; Facebook’s CEO is more optimistic, thinking our quality of lives will improve enormously. Alibaba’s director even thinks that AI will replace CEOs in a 30 years’ time.
In any case, there’s not doubt that your business should already jump on the AI bandwagon and not miss the train, because its possibilities and applications are tremendous. According to Gartner, 80% of the data we’ll gather everyday will be unstructured, made of emails, images, users’ interactions, data analytics, etc. AI power will very likely be what helps businesses sift through the ocean of information, and make the most out of it.