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Aug 18, 2023

4 min to read

5 Myths About Generative AI

The noise around generative AI is impossible to ignore, but it can be hard to decipher what’s real and what’s a buzzy LinkedIn headline. In this article, we separate fact from fiction by dispelling the five most common myths we’ve heard about AI.


Artificial intelligence (AI)

Customer Experience

Product Experience

Retail Trends

From revolutionizing the customer experience to optimizing supply chains to replacing entire job functions and departments, the buzz around generative AI paints a tantalizing picture of unprecedented efficiency and shopping journeys powered by robots.

And while there’s a lot of really exciting ways your organization can take advantage of AI today, we’ve seen a lot of misinformation floating around about the impact AI will have on the retail industry. So, we decided to separate fact from fiction by dispelling the five most common myths we’ve heard about the most talked about technology of 2023, AI.


Myth 1: AI is a magical, fix-all solution

It’s tempting to view AI as a magic wand that can instantly resolve any business challenge we point it to. In reality, the power of AI lies in its capability to be used to address specific pain points identified by an organization as part of a larger strategy.

For instance, in the fashion industry, it can be nearly impossible to not only predict upcoming trends but then also react quickly enough to take full advantage of the market shift. A well-trained machine learning algorithm can ingest billions of data points from social media and market data in a matter of minutes and generate intelligent recommendations for patterns, styles, and colors. Some AI art generators could even assist in the creation of the trendy new line.

But who’s training the algorithm with the right target audience to ensure the AI generator isn’t creating a pink, sparkly button down shirt that’s popular in the Gen-Z market for their professional men’s shirt line? AI can help generate SEO-friendly and channel-specific product descriptions, but who’s identifying which channels and markets content needs to be curated for? Who’s communicating production and launch timelines to marketing and support teams, and ensuring everyone has the information and assets they need for a cohesive launch? 

AI is not a one-size-fits-all solution; at least for the foreseeable future, it’s not quite as easy as some people may think to just “ChatGPT it”. Which leads us nicely to our second myth.



Myth 2: AI will entirely replace human jobs

AI is a collaborator, not a competitor. While it’s true that AI has the potential to automate certain repetitive and routine tasks, its primary impact is on augmenting human capabilities and transforming the nature of work instead of entirely replacing the work itself. In something like the electronics industry, AI can help to optimize supply chains and reduce time-to-market, but it can’t entirely replace the need for skilled engineers to design and create innovative products.

In actuality, the growth of AI is expected to create over 97 million jobs by 2025; these roles will be more focused on data analysis and AI development and implementation, but will still require the empathy, creativity, and critical thinking of human beings that AI can’t quite replicate (yet). The adoption of this new technology should be seen as a reallocation of responsibilities that can actually lead to a more dynamic and productive workforce.


Myth 3: AI implementation is expensive and time-consuming

One of the most common excuses we hear about avoiding AI implementation is that businesses often believe that this process requires substantial upfront costs without immediate results. The truth is, while AI projects can be resource-intensive initially, cloud-based AI platforms and pre-built solutions have made it more accessible and cost-effective for many businesses. 

Cloud-based platforms eliminate the need for massive hardware investments and provide access to powerful computing resources on a pay-as-you-go basis, meaning a reduced up-front cost and an accelerated results timeline. Similarly, pre-built AI solutions are often tailored to specific industry needs, coming with predefined models and algorithms that can be customized to suit a business’s requirements, reducing the time it may take to implement.


Myth 4: AI doesn’t require human oversight

AI systems are powerful tools, capable of processing massive amounts of data to make complex decisions. However, they are not infallible; just like any technology, especially new technology, AI systems have limitations and can often encounter scenarios they were not explicitly designed to handle. This is particularly relevant in industries where safety regulations, quality standards, and user satisfaction are critical factors.

An AI-powered algorithm can recommend a product to a customer, but it cannot understand the subtleties of cultural context or personal preference that a human sales associate could grasp. If the training data provided to the algorithm is inherently biased or incomplete, the AI system could perpetuate these biases or fail to accurately generalize to new situations. 

At least for the foreseeable future, AI will not be entirely autonomous; it will have to be routinely inspected, maintained, and trained by us lowly humans to maintain accuracy, safety, and ethicality.


Myth 5: AI implementation is a one-and-done process

Deciding to implement an AI solution is a great first step, but it’s important to remember that AI software is not static but should grow and evolve alongside the business it serves. Customer expectations and demand are growing rapidly, and we’ve all seen how unpredictable the market can be over the past few years. Adaptability is the name of the game – as your business expands into new markets, introduces new products, or tests new channels, you’re going to want an AI solution that remains a valuable asset rather than a stagnant technology that becomes obsolete.

Regular evaluations of the AI solutions performance, as well as updates to the underlying algorithms and models, are critical to ensuring that the solution continues to deliver the same value and stays aligned with your business goals.


Embracing the Future of Generative AI

As we venture into the second half of the year, let’s leave the myths behind us and focus on how we can embrace this ground-breaking technology to create personalized and optimized customer experiences. If we take the time to strategically utilize AI in collaboration with our creativity and human nature, then we can unlock avenues of growth and scalability that don’t require huge up-front investments in resources, time, or cost.

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