Companies that undertake international market research are increasingly using AI as a part of their armory. It can be used to increase the ROI of a marketing campaign by using machine learning, big data analytics, and other processes in order to gain greater insight into what it is that makes the customer tick. When you have these insights, you can adapt your marketing tactics or your customer support to make a meaningful difference. It can take a lot of the guesswork out of interacting with the customer.
AI can also be used to automate processes that could only previously be done by human intelligence such as things like content generation, which is vital for SEO purposes. Google requires websites to add interesting content on a regular basis in order to increase their ranking, but actually producing content is something that until recently only humans could do. It takes up a lot of time, which is something that most businesspeople not only don't have to spare but also don't want to do. Nonetheless, content marketing has become so important that some people consider that it is the only type of marketing that is worthwhile.
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However, using AI may allow online retailers to predict what customers are likely to want and thus enable them to adjust their stocks accordingly so that they do not buy in stocks which will not sell very well. There is even a suggestion that if AI becomes more accurate it could get to the point where online retailers ship products to a customer without first receiving a formal order, the customer having the option to return it if it is not wanted.
AI may also have an effect on the real estate market. We are not very far from having driverless cars which can move at faster speeds and thus reduce the length of a commute. Passengers can use the commute time to work while they are being driven to the office, much as some people work on a train, so the commute becomes productive. This could lead to people moving out of cities and into villages further away from work.
Certainly, the use of AI is going to become more widespread, but just how widespread remains to be seen. There are definite challenges in relation to privacy and ethics.