Two generations ago, retail customers relied on the corner store for personal attention. Today, AI is beginning to enable such personalized service at mass-market scale
Remember when you patronized your neighborhood store for the personal attention and knowledgeable recommendations from a shop owner who actually knew you? Probably not. But your grandparents certainly do.
It has been that long since retailers and consumer goods makers knew individual customers well enough to understand and deliver exactly what each desired. The hyper-local, super-attentive corner store is long gone. It was replaced by mass-produced consumer products and chain stores that took a scattershot approach to sales and service. Along the way, these companies repeatedly tried and failed to achieve true
mass customization for a market of one.
But all that is changing, thanks to artificial intelligence (AI) technologies, especially machine learning (ML). It’s ironic that an approach that turns individual customers into data points can then leverage those data points to serve each customer as an individual. But that’s the
power of AI.