What does IBM’s Watson wear to work? Carhartt, of course

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To help Carhartt get in front of fast-changing customer preferences, they searched for a way to accelerate and enhance their analytics processes and found IBM Watson Commerce Insights. 

If asked what comes to mind when you think about the workwear brand Carhartt, it’s likely images of rugged people running heavy equipment or working outdoors in brutal winter weather conditions. What you probably don’t associate with Carhartt is artificial intelligence, because after all, AI is something from sci-fi movies like Terminator and Interstellar, right? Well, not anymore…

Although Carhartt has a 125-year history rooted in manufacturing durable workwear, they are a cutting-edge company with a sophisticated workforce serving contemporary customers. In fact, the newest addition to Carhartt’s staff is none other than Watson, IBM’s AI and machine learning platform.  In 2017 Watson went to work for Carhartt, constantly monitoring its business data for emerging trends so online merchandisers can act faster to capitalize on opportunities.

Ironically, it was a sci-fi film that highlighted Carhartt’s need for Watson and better insights into business performance and customer data. When the Academy-Award-winning film Interstellar featured Matthew McConaughey wearing a Carhartt jacket, demand for the jacket blew up. After the film’s opening weekend, it took Carhartt merchandisers a week to identify the trend, and by then they had missed a significant opportunity.

To help Carhartt get in front of fast-changing customer preferences, they searched for a way to accelerate and enhance their analytics processes and found IBM® Watson® Commerce Insights. For Carhartt, Watson is doing the heavy lifting of digging through their data in real-time to help every customer find the products they’re looking for. With the right solutions in place, Carhartt achieved record-breaking conversion rates during their peak winter shopping season, proving that deeper insight into inventory is key to delivering better experiences for customers.

Fortunately for Carhartt and other brands around the world, AI isn’t the stuff of sci-fi movies any longer.


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IBM Watson Commerce Product Marketing Manager - B2C eCommerce & Fulfillment

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