Revolutionizing Sales and Marketing for Retail with Generative AI | HCLTech

Revolutionizing Sales and Marketing for Retail with Generative AI

For the uninitiated, Generative AI can learn from existing data and create new content. While traditional AI excels in ‘predicting’ trends and results.
2 minutes read
Debraj  Bhattacharya


Debraj Bhattacharya
Client Partner, Retail-CPG
2 minutes read
Revolutionizing Sales and Marketing for Retail with Generative AI

The Ever-transforming World of Retail

“To buy, or not to buy, that is the question.” Drawing inspiration from Shakespeare's famed creation Hamlet, where the forlorn Prince contemplates the complexities of life, I establish a contrast to a world that the Bard would likely be quite oblivious to – Omnichannel retail. Indeed, that pivotal question lies at the heart of every customer's purchasing decision. This pertinent question also challenges retailers and consumer goods firms, necessitating precision in the design of their product, marketing and channel strategies to navigate the ever-evolving retail landscape better. The world of retail is changing at a breakneck pace. Gone are the days when one would have to wait for the weekend to visit their store of choice and rummage through the endless assortment of products to get what was desired. As retail became omnichannel, web and mobile opened the gates to a world where transactions are a few clicks (or swipes) away, all from the comfort of our homes.

Embracing Digital Transformation

We have been accustomed to this new paradigm of retail for many years now. A key driver of this transformation was the advancement of . However, as customers became accustomed to this ecosystem, their desires skyrocketed too. It's a world shaped by immediate gratification, demanding products anytime, anywhere. This trend, exacerbated in the post-Amazon era, has led to further digital advancements to meet customer demands. While AI has been instrumental in a lot of this change, the newest kid on the block, the talk of the town, is Generative AI.

The Magic of Generative AI

For the uninitiated, Generative AI can learn from existing data and create new content. While traditional excels in ‘predicting’ trends and results, Generative AI focuses on creating something entirely new. Simply acknowledging the fundamental capabilities of this technology positions us to envision what endless possibilities it may hold for the world of business - and otherwise.



While traditional AI excels in ‘predicting’ trends and results, Generative AI focuses on creating something entirely new.



Here is a snapshot of how sales and marketing for consumer firms can benefit from this pathbreaking technology:

  1. Content creation – Tailored content not only drives greater sale propensity but also improves marketing ROI. Generative AI streamlines the process of creating promotional material and product descriptions, improving customer experience.

    An associated use of Generative AI is content moderation. It can automatically moderate and sanitize promotional content, preventing any inadvertent negative effect on product promotions due to objectionable material on the web.

  2. Crowdsourcing ideas – Social listening is crucial for present-day brands. The chatter around brands on social media platforms, both good and bad, can be a major input for consumer firms. With the advent of Generative AI, the output becomes even more refined and less costly. Ideas around packaging colors, flavors, product presentation, ad concepts and sustainability issues can be picked up for new concept creation. This also helps in discovering new ways to reach out to specific customer segments.
  3. Boosting customer experience – Modern-day consumer sector firms rely on the quality of the end-customer experience, both online and in brick-and-mortar retail stores. Retailers strive to excel in personalizing the product offerings and improve loyalty. Traditional AI has been immensely helpful but with Generative AI, the frontier has expanded even more. Using text-to-image or video conversion, a small handwritten description of the consumer’s wants can be transformed into a precise visual representation and matched with inventory available for fulfillment, providing invaluable insights for new product development.
  4. Improved call-center performance – For call-center agents, responding to a high volume of requests and providing the right resolution can be daunting. Generative AI can offer support using insights from past calls, enabling real-time sentiment analysis, transcript summarization and post-call follow-ups. The quality and timeliness of resolutions improve substantially as a result.
  5. Campaign creation – Creating an ad campaign requires an elaborate set of gadgets, crews, actors, locations and more, which can be quite cost prohibitive. Generative AI streamlines campaign creation and reduces the extensive need for props and actors. Furthermore, brands can develop localized campaigns that are tailored to each region, and will contribute to the personalized nature of each campaign. Visual effects (VFX), traditionally cost-intensive and time-consuming, can be made a lot simpler and faster using Generative AI.

A Glimpse into the Future of Retail

Generative AI’s global market size is expected to skyrocket from 7.9 billion USD in 2021 to 110.8 billion USD by 2030. That is a whopping annual growth rate of 34.3% per year. With newer applications cropping up by the day in the consumer sector, it appears that this technology might just be the game- changer that retailers need.

When Shakespeare wrote in Hamlet – “If it be not now, yet it will come: the readiness is all”, he could hardly have anticipated the relevance it would hold for retailers, four centuries down the line. Today's organizations must quickly adapt to such technological advancements. The question remains: are they prepared to fully integrate these innovations into their operations?

The answer to that question might as well separate the good from the great in the consumer sector industry.

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