Here is a perfect example of how smart PR can lead directly to increased business.  IBM’s Watson Computer is going to Wall Street after its successful run on Jeopardy! last year.  Admittedly, appearing on a quiz show was a stunt but it was a brilliant way to show off the capabilities of the machine and to get an advantage over competitors.  Now Watson will do more mundane stuff for which it was built — analysis, processing data and relating to customers.  The machine might not have reached this point in the sales cycle had it not shown what it could do against human competitors.  IBM’s penchant for taking on Big Ideas and making them work from computer chess to quiz shows has set the company apart.  No one else has done what IBM can do.  That’s differentiation.

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