We have seen a tremendous increase in computing power over the past decades, with 6 billion people now connected through PCs and mobile phones. Over the next few years, we expect to see the emergence of 75Bn smart things (according to Morgan Stanley), such as smart toothbrushes, connected robot arms, and driverless cars.
While the tectonic shift in technology truly excites me, the changes in the way a company can interact with its customers is more important.
Using the trillions of data points and interactions (e.g., iBeacon locations in airports, tweets, ANPR, online browsing patterns, shopping data), companies can provide increasingly more personalised communications and deliver more meaningful marketing.
We are in the “Age of the Customer” – and this could not be more relevant for the airline and travel sector.
At Salesforce, we have the privilege of working with many of the leading global airlines, including KLM, Delta, Japan Airlines, Virgin America, and Virgin Atlantic. We are typically helping them to innovate in the following four areas:.
In the consumer world, we are in daily contact with “smart” processes. For instance, Apple’s Siri understands requests through Natural Language Processing, Amazon is able to provide intelligent recommendations for next products, and Facebook uses deep learning to provide auto-tag functionality.
Why should this be different in business? Salesforce had a vision to make enterprise software as easy to use as Amazon.com, why shouldn't AI in CRM be as ubiquitous and as easy to use as product recommendations on Amazon?
At Salesforce, we believe that adoption of Artificial Intelligence (AI) at scale will happen over the next few years. Our goal is to empower everyone to discover insights, predict outcomes, recommend next steps, and automate tasks across all processes. To this end, we have introduced Einstein, our new AI product that includes predictive analytics, machine learning, deep learning and sentiment analysis. We built it as a new layer that we added to our cloud stack, to provide data ready intelligence to all of our cloud apps.
There are two primary benefits of putting AI in the cloud. Firstly, the massive scalability of our cloud platform caters to the extensive computational requirements that AI typically requires. Secondly, it can easily connect with the data currently in the platform (e.g., sales data, emails, calendars, social media inputs, IoT data) as well as connect with outside systems through APIs and connectors.
Airlines can significantly benefit from AI in order to optimise B2B win rates, provide better B2C marketing and improve staff efficiency. Leading companies are already benefiting from AI in the following ways:
Of course, AI can be applied to any process that provides sufficient data. I am personally excited about the intelligent ancillary product recommendations, predictive maintenance of engines, and intelligent case routing.
Please have a look at the recording of the Travel, Transport and Hospitality session from Dreamforce ’16. It features the following customer stories:
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