A few years ago, having an Amazon Echo or Google Home was a novelty. In early 2017, only 7 percent of U.S. households had them, according to 2017 Gartner and Inside Radio research.

By March 2018, that number skyrocketed, according to Voicebot.ai research, and 20 percent of U.S. adults had a smart speaker in their home. In just two years, Gartner predicts 75 percent of households will have one.

Having a smart speaker has become, for most, an essential part of their day. That’s because the more you have it, the more you use it, according to a 2018 NPR and Edison Research study.

That adoption and the embrace of smart speakers’ artificial intelligence (AI) will soon come to marketing and business as well.

Right now, the use of AI, augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) is relatively limited. But, within a few years, these will become an essential part of how your business functions.

For instance, Walmart just equipped all its stores with VR sets for employee training. Since last year, VR headset sales have increased 31 percent and are expected to grow 88 percent year-over-year until 2022, according to a study by the International Data Corporation.

Widespread adoption of these inventions may seem far off right now, but it’ll happen before you know it. That’s why now is the time to imagine how these tools can make what your company does easier and more effective.

Get inspired by learning four ways other companies are embracing AI, AR and VR right now.

1. Echo everywhere

Success story: Smart speakers are expanding beyond the home. Amazon recently announced Echo for cars, among other new applications. Plus, Alexa, the AI assistant in Echo, drastically expanded its capabilities again, which should make it more conversational and helpful.

For instance, Alexa can know each step of a recipe by reading prominent cooking websites like Epicurious and Food52. It also can guard your home by integrating with several alarm systems.

Question: How can your brand’s product, services or educational information better integrate with smart speakers? Are you optimizing your copy for voice-enabled search engine optimization?

2. See it. Snap it. Buy it.

Success story: See a pair of shoes you like as someone walks by? Open up Snapchat, take a picture, and you’ll be redirected to Amazon’s site to buy that exact item — thanks to Amazon’s machine vision tech.

Question: How can your brand embrace virtual search? Or how can you make it easier for people to identify (and digitally connect) to your products?

3. Smarter ads

Success story: Subway integrated AI technology (WeatherFX for IBM Watson) to create dynamic ads based on local weather. By making changes, like avoiding the promotion of hot sandwiches during heat waves, Subway saw a 53 percent reduction in campaign waste and a 31 percent increase in store traffic.

Question: What data could your company take hold of to offer better, smarter and more relevant ads?

4. See the virtual sights.

Success story: Customers are more confident buying a product when they can try it out. Previously, the only way people could do that with e-commerce inventory was to buy it. But AR can change that.

L'Oréal Paris now lets customers try on over 300 samples of their product using AR technology. While that’s easier for a big company to do, smaller companies can now experiment with AR, too. By uploading a series of detailed product images to Shopify, you can create 3-D product models.

Question: How can your business use AR to help shoppers better engage and explore your product?