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Across industries, IBM Watson is a big deal. Whether your company operates in financing, healthcare, or technology, IBM Watson offers a suite of features that can help your business increase its productivity, competitiveness, and revenue.

What is IBM Watson, though, and how does it work?

Keep reading to find out! With this post, your business can learn all about this advanced artificial intelligence (AI) software. Even better, your team can discover opportunities for IBM Watson in your company by learning about its applications in a variety of industries.

What is IBM Watson?

IBM Watson is home to IBM’s enterprise-ready AI and machine learning services, applications, and tools. It’s a broad definition, but it summarizes the massive number of features (and capabilities) available with this multi-cloud platform.

IBM Watson is home to IBM’s enterprise-ready AI and machine learning services, applications, and tools

The platform comes with more than 15 products, including the following:

  • Watson OpenScale
  • Watson Assistant
  • Watson Discovery
  • Watson Studio
  • Watson Knowledge Catalog
  • And more

With machine learning and artificial intelligence, IBM Watson can process and analyze a tremendous amount of data in a variety of ways. That’s why dozens of industries use IBM Watson, leveraging the technology in unique and innovative ways.

It’s also why IBM provides businesses two options when investing in IBM Watson:

  • Use a pre-built enterprise app
  • Build a custom model

This approach makes IBM Watson accessible to companies of multiple sizes. A midsized business, as well as an enterprise, for example, can take advantage of IBM Watson’s capabilities by either purchasing a pre-built application or developing a custom one in-house.

In some cases, your organization can even access IBM Watson by partnering with a third-party service provider. A marketing agency like WebFX, for example, uses IBM Watson in its marketing automation software, MarketingCloudFX, to build competitive, data-driven strategies for clients.

How does IBM Watson work?

With its broad capabilities, it’s natural to ask, “How does IBM Watson work?” While every application of IBM Watson differs, the software uses its machine learning and artificial intelligence capabilities in each of its uses.

Companies across industries, from finance to marketing, can use IBM Watson's broad capabilities

A few examples of some industries that put IBM Watson to work include:

  • Advertising
  • Healthcare
  • Education
  • Finance
  • Recruitment
  • And more

In some cases, companies will only use select features of IBM Watson, versus the entire suite.

For example, a business may use IBM Watson’s personality insights feature to build customer models, while another organization will rely on the platform’s assistant and tone analyzer to provide customer support.

The fact that your company can create a custom solution with IBM Watson’s tech also influences how IBM Watson works. Your development team can tailor the machine learning and artificial intelligence power of IBM Watson in dozens of ways.

As an example, look at the following ways companies used IBM Watson:

Businesses across the world develop innovative applications of IBM Watson by looking at their pain points. Whether they’re struggling with customer support, client results, or workplace efficiency, they can resolve those issues with the machine learning power of IBM Watson.

Your company can also discover smart ways to use IBM Watson.

6 everyday IBM Watson applications

A few typical applications for IBM Watson in businesses include:


Companies that adopt IBM Watson can streamline the processing and managing of data. In a time that humans can’t match, IBM Watson can process and evaluate millions of data points. It can also streamline the organization of this data, making it quick and painless for staff to access this data.

For many businesses, the advantages of this IBM Watson capability include:

  • Save staff members time
  • Maximize productivity of team members
  • Expedite data processing

No matter your industry, your company can benefit from these perks.


Organizations in the business-to-business (B2B) and business-to-consumer (B2C) industries can also leverage IBM Watson when it comes to delivering top-notch customer support. In this scenario, IBM Watson works like a customer service representative or chatbot.

A list of advantages for using IBM Watson as a customer support solution

Advantages of this application include:

  • Fast response times to customer questions
  • Improved customer support experiences
  • Increased customer satisfaction rates

With a better customer service system, your business can grow its competitive advantage in the industry. A reputation for top-notch support can convince consumers and business buyers to choose your company and its products or services.


Across industries, businesses rely on advanced technology systems to operate. These programs can range from payment processing to content management. All can impact your day-to-day operations, as well as the experience of your clients, which is why this capability of IBM Watson is valuable.

Some of the reasons why this feature matters to companies include:

  • Decrease the risk of a system outage
  • Minimize downtime for pre-planned or unplanned system downtime
  • Lower financial losses in the event of a system outage

Keep your business operational 24/7 with the machine learning power of IBM Watson.


Companies in regulated industries, like finance, insurance, or healthcare, should take advantage of IBM Watson’s capabilities for risk mitigation. With IBM Watson’s risk mitigation toolset, your team can train it to monitor and alert your team about new regulations, privacy requirements, and more.

A list of advantages for using IBM Watson as a risk mitigation solution

A few perks of this application of IBM Watson include:

  • Protect your business from non-compliance fines, charges, etc.
  • Provide your clients and users with a secure experience
  • Enhance your reputation in the industry

If your business operates in a heavily regulated sector, consider the potential value of IBM Watson.


A lot of companies make decisions based on predictions or hunches, rather than data. These decisions can range from a strategy for a marketing campaign to a decision about a medical treatment. Informing your organization’s choices with data can make a tremendous impact on the success of these decisions.

Some of the most notable advantages of data-driven decisions include:

  • Improve the outcome of company moves
  • Increase the quality of services and client experiences
  • Drive business growth

Provide your company, as well as clients, with the best chance at success with IBM Watson.


Whether your company features an aging workforce or high turnover rates, IBM Watson can prevent the loss of valuable staff skills and knowledge. As a knowledge base, IBM Watson can provide every member of your team with a valuable resource.

Taking advantage of this IBM Watson capability offers a few benefits, including:

  • Minimize talent gaps
  • Decrease burnout rates
  • Grow in-house knowledge of industry, business, and strategy

Even if your company features a consistent workforce, IBM Watson can improve information sharing.

Access the full capabilities of IBM Watson with MarketingCloudFX

While IBM Watson offers adopters an immense advantage in the marketplace, it’s not easy for businesses to incorporate this advanced software into their day-to-day operations. A platform like MarketingCloudFX, however, can help your company get started.

MarketingCloudFX, a marketing automation software, operates on IBM Watson. With MarketingCloudFX, your business can receive immediate insight into the performance of your digital marketing strategies, plus obtain additional information about your clients and leads.

Learn more about MarketingCloudFX today or request a free demo!

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