Artificial intelligence. Two words that are generally considered harmless or inane on their own, but that together herald a number of different things depending on your perspective. Artificial Intelligence is already here, in our phones and in our computers, in the retail industry and at the core of manufacturing, and it’s here to stay. It’s effect has already been disruptive, and we can already start to see the ways in which it has shaken up the beauty industry.
Here are the top 3 ways:
1) Product Development
Beauty brands can no longer just rely on playing the old favourites that worked for them in the past. Sure, something might have sold very well to customers having a brief summer fling with something new, but if you don’t consider why and test whether or not that’s not going to be a long term development, you’ll be losing money in the long run. AI allows for highly efficient product development, without the potential flaws created by human subjectivity and using data in such a way that it can accurately fill in missing information that might otherwise be left down to guesswork or speculation. AI utilises data to produce products that reflect the customer demand for them, and can predict whether or not those products will have any long term impact. AI means that brands can adapt and create products that are pertinent and do so in a way that is cost effective and sustainable.
2) Personalised Shopping Experience
The marketplace for beauty can start to seem boundless, endless, constantly renewing itself and constantly changing with the latest up and coming brand or fad. The beauty industry is worth $532 billion a year and, according to the analytics firm Edited, is currently on an upwards trajectory. That’s enough to give anyone the sense that try as they might, with thousands of brands and products to choose from, they’re going to get it wrong. Worse still, it can be a nightmare wading through so large a pool just to find that you haven’t got something that’s quite right for your needs. This has ramifications for beauty brands too where, if they can’t give the customer what they want quickly, there will be another site ready to pop up with something more suitable. AI helps websites by using algorithms that allow for each customer, in their millions, to access and be shown beauty products that are targeted at and relevant to them, and do so in a space of time that would be inconceivable for the human brain.
3) Customer Experience and Satisfaction
Simply put, AI disrupts the beauty industry by increasing customer satisfaction and trust. If a brand wants to survive and thrive in the world as it has become, it has to acknowledge that customers now want a personal service that creates a truly unique shopping experience. That ranges from recommending the perfect skin care régime to understanding exactly how best to approach the customer and what they respond to. A good example of this is using artificial intelligence to judge which emails are relevant to users and attracting them with a tagline that suits them. There’s no hiding the fact that their data is being used, and it’s better that way: the customer knows the data is used in order to increase their satisfaction and not fill up their inbox with irrelevant spam. It makes the shopping experience better for them, a world where the arrow is on-target on the first attempt, rather than being the victim of a dozen arrows fired into the next field. Finally, the data goes through a machine, not a nosey employee with too much time on their hands.