AS ARTIFICIAL intelligence (IT) technology improves, it will free people to learn what they want so that they can change their lives to do what they want, according to an industry leader.
“Technology will provide all that people need, and will especially meet the different demands of different customers,” said John Zealley, Accenture Group’s senior managing director and global lead for consumer goods and services. “AI will learn the personal needs of each person and design things that match their unique demands rather than mass products.” Zealley spoke on May 14 after celebrating the first-year anniversary of the Accenture Customer Innovation Network (ACIN) in Milan, Italy.
Driving innovation is the guiding philosophy of the ACIN, and draws on Accenture’s deep industry experience in fashion, retail and consumer goods industries. The network provides clients with access to an innovation ecosystem that includes start-ups, industry experts, universities and technology partners.
ACIN provides a glimpse of what many tech experts predict will be the future for all of consumer goods industries, including fashion, retail, and automobiles as AI, digital, and other technologies are integrated to analyse and share information in the service of personal demand. The integration of new technologies will challenge all industries sectors to change their approach from mass production to tailor-made marketing, said Zealley.
For example, as the smart-home concept evolves, houses will be designed to accumulate data on the behaviour and preferences of their inhabitants through devices including smart mirrors, smart TVs, Google Voice devices, smart washing machines, and so on.
Homeowners can now use Google Voice to remind them of their daily schedule. It can also link with other platforms to serve the homeowner’s needs, such as a requests for recipes for tonight’s dinner. A smart fridge can let the owner know what groceries are missing for tonight’s planned dinner. Such data could be linked to the systems of retailers, placing a smart order and having the food delivered to the doorstep.
Those planning a party with friends, could reserve seats at the bar or restaurant online, create the theme of an event, and invite the friends through an online network. Bars or restaurants would receive the reservation information, including the purpose of the visit, and prepare gifts and other treats such as a birthday cake to personalise the experience.
Accenture now helps its fashion-industry customers on their journey to stay up-do-date based on research into market trends and customers trends, drawing on AI technology to learn personal preferences of customers as they plan to meet, party or work.
For example, when planning a dinner with a customer, Google Voice and a smart mirror could be asked to suggest grooming styles, an outfit that matches the weather at the destination or what brands to purchase.
Google Voice can serve as a personal stylist. It can find slots of free time in your calendar, book needed services and suggest airlines and shopping opportunities.
The key for a company is to in the consumers’ presence and part of their lives in all the moments that they have a need to fulfil.
Montenapoleone Association has createdn event calendar and offers customers the personalised experience that other consumers cannot access. They have created an app that sends special promotions and services to customers as they walk down the street. Digital information on the customer helps the store prepare in advance of the customer even enters the store, enabling sales assistants to offer just the right products and special offers. They can pre-order the customer’s size and ensure they have the stock ready.
Client can also customise the colour and material of products.
And the store can pull together in one single view the data on sales, orders, products and inventory to run a better operation.
Through gamification, AI technology also can provide an advance experience for someone shopping for a car, allowing them to get familiar with brands, configurations, and in-car functions. They can share their experience on social media with friends and other users.
Car brands can use car configuration simulations via augmented reality, another digital technology that enables customers to try out their products without having to have a large inventory of car models at the showroom.
Advanced technology is changing how close a company can get to understanding the lifestyles of individual customers and their expectations of service. We’re on the brink of widespread use of technology that makes it possible to quickly deliver products and service, when customers want, where they want and how they want.
This link between technology and people’s individual lifestyles will help make their lives easier and more convenient, Zealley said.
And getting to that point will require all product brands to change their business model by using technology to ensure their brand is always in the minds of their customers to create brand loyalty for the long term, he said.