All posts
10 easy, hype-free ways businesses can use AI to gain a competitive advantage
Share this

10 easy, hype-free ways businesses can use AI to gain a competitive advantage

Discover ten ways AI can help you gain a competitive advantage, and the tools you can use to help you save time and increase productivity.

Table of Contents

From product marketing to coding, artificial intelligence (AI) is revolutionizing how we do things. But, while everyone’s talking about AI, not everyone is an expert. 

When it comes to something as new as generative AI in particular (hello, ChatGPT) it can be hard to filter out the noise. You need to cut through the hype and hysteria to understand how AI helps businesses gain competitive advantage. For example, by saving time through automation. 

People talk about AI as though it can solve all your problems but knowing how to actually use it effectively is another matter altogether. Leaders need to learn how to differentiate between the hype and the applications of AI that are genuinely useful and the ones that will be flashes in the pan. Then, and only then, can you implement the most useful tools and principles to make your teams more productive.  

In this article, you'll learn 10 ways to use AI to stay competitive, including specific tools to improve collaboration and productivity. We'll also explore how Switchboard saves time by bringing all your people, projects, files, and AI tools together in one place. 

Save time, stay ahead of the game. 
Switchboard lets you work side by side or async on any app or project for more productive teamwork.
Learn more

1. Workflow automation 

Product teams spend significant amounts of time on manual tasks, like the data analysis and approvals that are necessary to ensure product market fit and regulatory compliance. 

When you use AI for workflow automation, you can speed up manual business processes, tasks, and activities. This gives you back more time for high-level tasks and innovation. For example, brainstorming better ways to serve your customers. And with more time to focus on what your customers want, you’re better placed to put them at the heart of everything you do.  

For example, a product team working for an ecommerce company can use workflow automation to help speed up the creation of their new mobile app. Instead of manually collecting user feedback on beta features, they can use AI-driven testing scripts and build user feedback forms within the app. This saves time while letting them shape their product more closely to customer needs, which gives you a leg up when bringing the product to market. 

Pro tip: Use tools like Asana and ClickUp to build custom automation workflows that let you put repetitive tasks on cruise control, like notifying people when something’s ready for their review. This saves time and reduces the chance of manual error.
You can also use Zapier to send automatic updates from these tools to your internal communication software. This helps make overcommunication–not notification overwhelm–part of your company culture to keep everyone on the same page.  

2. Asynchronous work

When teams work well asynchronously it means you can cancel more meetings and get back more time for focus work. Good async working practices include knowing how to collaborate effectively across different departments, locations, and time zones. This gives you a competitive advantage because you can offer the flexibility in working hours and location that top talent now expects, allowing you to hire the best people, no matter where–or when–in the world they are. There’s also no more juggling schedules to find a time for meetings that work for everyone.  

AI tools can help make async work more efficient by giving you all the information you need to do your best work. For example, your product development team might use automated meeting transcripts and note summaries to capture critical insights quickly, track design iterations, and make sure everyone is aligned on project objectives—without getting them all in a meeting. 

This saves valuable time and also provides a detailed record of discussions for future reference. With all the context you need to get work done, you can focus on improving internal communications and collaborative development processes.

Pro tip: Use tools like to create automated meeting transcripts or use Notion's AI feature to summarize content at scale. Open these tools or upload notes and transcripts in your persistent Switchboard project room. This makes it a source of truth for async work that helps boost productivity through teamwork.

Just create your dedicated project room to keep everything organized in one place so team members can access materials during real-time work sessions or on their own schedule. Switchboard's AI feature can also produce quick summaries of meeting sticky notes so people can get fast async updates.
Switchboard workspace with multiple tools and browsers
Switchboard lets you work side-by-side and async on all the tools you need for productive real-time or async teamwork. Source: Switchboard

3. Ideation

According to McKinsey, creativity strongly correlates to financial success, so it’s vital to create the conditions for teams to innovate and come up with new ideas. 

For example, product designers are tasked with coming up with creative ideas and concepts for products or features that address user needs and align with business goals. It’s a big ask, so it can help to have an “extra brain” to kick off the creative process. 

This is exactly where AI shines. If you’re using a visual collaboration platform like Switchboard to brainstorm design concepts, you can use the AI-powered chat to get ideas and answers on the fly. Like other generative AI tools, it provides you with inspiration based on a prompt, sparking thoughts you might not have thought of otherwise. This gives you a competitive advantage by speeding up the ideation process making it easier to come up with new creative ideas and solutions.

Switchboard workspace with AI sidebar for quick answers
Ask Switchboard’s AI questions during your meeting—no need to switch tabs to use ChatGPT, although you can also have that open in Switchboard. Source: Switchboard

4. Content generation

Product marketing teams, perhaps in collaboration with content marketers, can use AI to analyze customer data, preferences, and behaviors and create tailored content that resonates with individual users. Generative AI tools like OpenAI, aka ChatGPT, use natural language processing to create content at scale. 

You can use AI to create content for internal communications, like emails and presentations, as well as marketing content like blog posts or landing pages. You can even ask it to polish voice recordings into reusable content to repurpose them.  

For example, digital marketers can use generative AI to create a quick "first draft" copy of your product's landing page based on a prompt that includes customer pain points and desires. They can then run it by the product team to check that the product details and features are accurate while tailoring it to your audience and brand tone of voice. 

This lets you stay competitive by helping you create more–and more targeted–content, faster. This means you can post more often, grow your brand faster, engage in thought leadership, and build customer trust. And when you put more helpful content out there, you’re more likely to rise through the ranks of Google searches. 

5. Customer research and feedback analysis

Teams across your company, including sales, marketing, product, and customer support all benefit from customer research and feedback. It helps them understand how products and services resonate with customers and gives them direct insights into how to improve them. 

In a cross-functional product review, your teams can use AI tools like BetterFeedback to understand large sets of customer data and rapidly extract information like customer needs and preferences.

By analyzing customer feedback, your teams might discover that your onboarding flow is confusing for new users, leading to higher-than-average churn. These valuable insights can then guide your efforts to improve the onboarding experience. This helps improve user retention and overall customer satisfaction, giving you a competitive advantage. 

6. Competitive analysis

The best products and solutions do what others on the market can't. This means your teams need to know what's out there, how your competitors are performing, and where you can outstrip them. 

Competitive analysis AI software like Taskade can monitor trends, track competitor performance, and generate in-depth reports about your competitors' strengths, weaknesses, and market share. This gives you a strong starting point for improving your product and appealing to current customer desires. 

For instance, after using competitive analysis software, your product team can get a detailed breakdown of which competitor features are performing well and which aren't. This lets you design features to match or outperform them. A side-by-side product comparison also lets you make informed decisions that can put your brand first by filling any market gaps.

Screenshot of Taskade AI tool
AI software Taskade generates comprehensive competitive analysis reports to help you stay ahead of the competition. Source: Taskade

7. Market segmentation

Beyond understanding your competitors, you also need to know how your product will fit into current and future markets. With market segmentation AI tools, you can analyze market data and divide your target market into distinct groups or segments based on shared characteristics and behaviors.

Tools like Stravito use artificial intelligence to enhance segmentation by automating data analysis and pattern recognition. This gives you insights into product-market fit and market potential, so you can take more informed, data-driven decisions. Stravito users report reductions of 70% and 75%, respectively, in time spent looking for or requesting information. That’s a lot of time you can get back to focus on creating products that solve real-world problems for your users. 

8. Risk management and reduction

AI can analyze unstructured data to flag abnormalities, which reduces the chances of human error in data analysis. It also improves data integrity by categorizing data and filing it correctly. This saves time checking for data accuracy, as well as providing you with automatic updates on any risks or issues.

Project teams can use AI tools to help them analyze past project timelines, resource allocation, and issue tracking. This makes it easier to identify potential risks and predict project delays or budget overruns next time. 

Using AI in this way allows for more efficient project management when teams have a clear understanding of the risks and opportunities involved. They can also identify defects, vulnerabilities, or performance issues early in product development, so there’s less chance of them getting as far as production or, worse, beta testing or launch.  

9. Predictive analytics for non-technical people

AI-driven predictive analytics can make forecasts and predict risks based on external factors, market trends, and historical data. This helps you anticipate changes in markets and demand so you can proactively adjust your product and marketing campaigns, and how you allocate resources. All this allows you to pivot fast and capitalize on new opportunities. 

In collaboration with your product team, non-technical roles can use predictive analytics to form a comprehensive picture of your product's success. For instance, sales can use AI to provide accurate sales forecasts, helping them set achievable targets and use resources effectively. 

For example, if you know that startups of under 50 people tend to sign up for longer contracts than enterprise customers, you can assign more business development representatives to those accounts. Sales can also share this information with the product team, which can use predictive analytics to anticipate this segment’s needs when it comes to new features. 

By combining information, both teams gain valuable insights into customer behaviors and market trends and can fine-tune their strategies and align product development with customer needs. 

Pro tip: Use AI tools like Amplitude inside your persistent Switchboard room to create visual dashboards from your data and get quick insights into trends and market changes. This lets anyone on your team access important findings in real time or async for better cross-functional information-sharing and teamwork.
Amplitude dashboard with AI-generated analysis
Amplitude generates charts on command, so you get all the information you need regardless of your level of tech proficiency. Source: Amplitude

10. Customer issue resolution

Businesses can use AI-driven chatbots to provide instant customer support and answer simple inquiries. This can make your customer service team more efficient by freeing them up to focus on more complex queries and customer follow-up. 

AI systems can also automatically categorize and route customer inquiries to the appropriate support agents or departments. This reduces response times and makes sure issues are addressed by the right people. For example, when a ticket comes in reporting a product bug, AI can bypass customer support and route it to the product team so they can fix the issue. 

How businesses use AI to solve customer issues varies, but most of the benefits boil down to time savings and improved customer satisfaction through timely interventions and more focused support. 

For example, AI can estimate the time required to resolve customer issues based on historical data, helping you manage customer expectations and provide a better service. This improves the overall customer experience and, therefore, can boost customer loyalty and retention, helping you stay competitive. 

Artificial intelligence: Your ticket to staying one step ahead  

AI can enhance decision-making, improve the customer experience, and speed up data analysis, risk management, and content creation. It also saves a ton of time by automating manual processes and routine tasks and acts as an extra brain to drive innovation.  

However, while it’s certainly a game-changer, it’s misleading to think of AI as a silver bullet. There’s a lot of hype, so you need to know how to cut through that and understand the applications for your teams and business. 

Staying competitive in the brave new world of AI involves finding ways to make it work for your teams. For example, using it to simplify or automate workflows and gain a better understanding of what your customers want. That’s why leaders need to distinguish between hype and the genuinely useful applications of AI—and know which tools are best for which tasks and teams.  

Once you’ve worked that out, you can make even more productivity gains by using all your AI tools directly in your persistent Switchboard room. Just open up all your browser-based apps, documents, and files inside the room to work on them side by side in real time or async alone. Keeping everything in one place reduces context switching, helps align cross-functional teams, and lets you cancel more meetings. You can even use Switchboard’s AI features to summarize sticky notes or get inspiration for brainstorming. 

And with all that time you get back, you can focus on giving your customers what they want—and stay ahead of the pack.

Save time, stay ahead of the game. 
Switchboard lets you work side by side or async on any app or project for more productive teamwork.
Learn more

Frequently asked questions about AI for competitive advantage

How do AI tools help with asynchronous work?

AI tools help with async work by optimizing and automating workflows and notifications. This reduces human error when it comes to project management and helps keep everyone in the loop and on the same page. AI-powered tools like Otter transcriptions and Switchboard’s sticky notes summaries also automatically summarize meeting notes so people can get updates async.  

What are the benefits of AI for businesses?

There are many benefits of AI technology for businesses, including: 

  • Data-driven decision-making
  • Improved risk and fraud detection
  • Accurate predictions and forecasts for improved product development  
  • Workflow and process automation to save time
  • Improved data accuracy to take strategic business decisions 
  • Analysis of large amounts of data to understand customer preferences 
  • Automatically create content for digital marketing campaigns 

How are businesses using AI to automate tasks improve decision-making and gain a competitive advantage?

Businesses can gain a competitive advantage by using AI to automate tasks like data analysis so they can improve decision making. This, plus workflow and task automation, allows them to save time and respond to market changes faster. A better understanding of customer needs also allows companies to create more personalized products and offer better customer support, which boosts customer satisfaction and loyalty.  

How can artificial intelligence help businesses make more money?

Artificial intelligence (AI) can help businesses make more money in several ways. For example, AI: 

  • Saves money by reducing time and effort spent on manual tasks 
  • Improves productivity by enabling more async work, which lets you cancel more meetings and spend more time on focus work   
  • Increases visibility into product success, risks, and market demands so you can create better products  
  • Lets you quickly adjust your strategies to stay competitive based on analysis of market data 
  • Gives you clean, accurate data and prevents costly human errors in processing and analysis

Stop, collaborate, and listen

Get product updates and Switchboard tips and tricks delivered right to your inbox.

You can unsubscribe at any time using the links at the bottom of the newsletter emails. More information is in our privacy policy.

You've been added to our newsletter full of tips and Switchboard updates.

You can unsubscribe at any time using the unsubscribe link at the bottom of the email.
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

Save time, stay ahead of the game.

Switchboard lets you work side by side or async on any app or project for more productive teamwork.