Machine Learning – a branch of AI, is changing the way companies utilise their Big Data reserve, which allowed them to reshape customers’ behaviour. Machine Learning based on the idea that machine can learn from data and recognise the patterns, which result in decisions and predictions with a degree of certainty.
Though the term Machine Learning has been around for a long time, it has proven to be valuable and profitable over the past few years. According to a report by Research and Market, Machine Learning has brought in over $1 billion in 2016 and still going strong until 2025, hitting $39.98 mark, predictably. The technology is expected to be adopted by everyone from Fortune 500 firms to SMEs, and even small retail shops.
Read more: AI’s Benefits in Business (P.1)
Presently, every sector from retail to hardware, to manufacturing and media are reaping the benefits of Machine Learning. Don’t count yourself out of the game, take a look at how top companies are doing it and are also winning it.
1. Target: Deep understanding of customer’s behaviour and future affections.
The US retail giant Target has been applying machine learning in order to predict not only customers’ purchase behaviour and buying process, further than that, they want to predict what’s happening in our lives – including pregnancy. One of their most renowned incidents is when Target implied to a father that his 16-year-old daughter was pregnant through its relentless advertisement for pregnancy. The result was that they had to dial its initiative back by putting in less specific ads.
It is certain that when a customer is going through a life event, for example: having a child, their buying patterns and decisions are most likely to change and influenced. With the gathered insights, Target’s model is capable of guessing which trimester a pregnant woman is in based on her purchases – precisely and effectively.
Read more: Turning Data into Smart Data
Machine Learning’s ability to pick up and learn from human’s routine helps to ignite perfect timing for promotions, plus planning is another benefit of machine learning since it can predict future actions and decisions based on current data.
2. Twitter: Aligning your virtual view.
Introduced the new function of thumbnail optimisation, Twitter is aiming to increase users’ engagement on the platform. The social platform knows that we tend to ignore the entire photo if the thumbnail is not appealing, thus skip the opportunity for interaction. Therefore, Twitter integrated Machine Learning technology to crop users' photos into captivating, low-resolution preview images. Hence, increases interaction between users and enhance the engagement on the social media platform.
Marketing personnel can also make use of this by letting Twitter decide your image showcase. Since their analysing tools have been fully developed, your marketing campaign will gain maximum reach with attractive thumbnails. Free and effective, couldn’t be any better!
3. Apple: Connecting devices & combining experiences.
The high-tech giant is known for their high attention to between devices connection. With the help of Machine Learning, Apple is prioritising cross-device personalisation to serve customers with smooth experiences. For instance, Apple promises a future where a user's Apple Watch might suggest an iTunes playlist to match his heartbeat goal in another app.
If your company works with smart devices, it is possible that you can start connecting multiple models with just one mutual database. The application allows you to gain quality insights thus improve customers’ overall experiences. Because devices have a mutual database, Apple is able to enhance performance thanks to different approaches to analysing data.
4. Alibaba: Personalising customer’s experiences
Another retail giant, based in China – Alibaba, has more than 500 million customers that generate an equivalent number of transactions per day. But did you know that each of those customers receives a unique designed shopping journey, from choosing to buying products?
Alibaba has applied Machine Learning into their virtual storefronts. Their AI bot, Ali Xiaomi, take care of most spoken and written customer service inquiries. Therefore, each search result suggests relevant and custom-made recommendations to satisfy customer’s needs and encourages more transactions from shoppers. It is a constant learning process as every action the shopper takes is recorded and analysed in their database to further understand the human’s mindset.
5. Spotify: Custom-made “Music taste” and smart suggestions
Spotify has been quietly implementing Machine Learning into their fan-favourite music recommendation service. Started from the “like” and “dislike” button in the Discover Weekly feed. To deeply integrated the Natural Language Processing (NLP) to “read” blogs, articles, then classify artists and group them together. Combined with Audio Analysis tool, Spotify can gather all the information about songs and artists and come up with the most suited songs on user’s Discover Weekly.
It is said that even Spotify is surprised by Discover Weekly's success since Machine Learning is not their strength and wasn't part of their plan when they first launched in 2007. Although the competition gets harder when Apple's New Music Mix adopted the same technology, Spotify’s still winning customer’s favour with their recommendations service.
Machine learning is making disruptive innovation all over different industries. Companies like Target, Apple and Spotify is defining future where smart services and virtual platforms become the norm.
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