Consumers are becoming accustomed to interacting with chat bots. For many it is a natural, easy and sometimes fun way to be serviced.
Siri, Alexa, Cortana, Google Now, all have become staples in our daily interactions. My mother, at 91, is fascinated with my Google Home device and how I get everything from my daily news fix, weather, and recipes to the occasional joke, simply by stating my request preceded with “Hey Goggle”. “How does it know so much!”, Mom finds it quite marvelous.
I’m quite certain one of my newscasts is actually being read by a chatbot. I believe this because sometimes the way she pronounces names (famous names), is not quite right, but I appreciate how natural she sounds overall.
Where are AI chatbots headed? “Is it live, or is it Memorex?” … some of you are likely old enough to remember that advertising tag line. Take a chatbot, and add machine learning or artificial intelligence, and you have a tool that improves with every single interaction it handles. Agent-assisted interactions allow the chatbot to learn from its human assistant. In fact, behind the scenes of Siri, Alexa, Cortana, Google Now, any AI chatbot, are humans who pickup where the AI chatbot leaves off, examining what the chatbot couldn’t understand or misunderstood and providing the human intelligence to respond.
Natural language interfaces used to be anything but natural, now we see, through various apps, just how natural they’ve really become. While I’m learning Italian, and practicing with Google Translate, the chatbot knows to examine the context of my poorly spoken phrase to “guess” at that I probably meant to say – very human of it -not to mention encouraging for me!
The fact that chatbots can speak and understand any language opens up a panacea for tailored customer service and reduced customer effort. Allowing customers to service themselves, in the language of their choice, for Canadian businesses is significant, we are a multi-culture nation. Being able to collect information from our customers in their language and have information shared back to them real time, either through a chatbot alone, or a chatbot-assisted conversation, significantly reduces interaction handle time and delivers a better customer experience.
Chatbots can carry a conversation between channels. i.e. start as a chat and move to a call, retaining the thread of conversation and avoid the customer having to repeat the same information as they switch channels. Again, the chatbot helps reduce customer effort and interaction handle times, while improving agent satisfaction by giving agents the information they need up-front.
From the simple to the complex, being able to have services delivered in whole or in part by a chatbot, through any channel, at all times, is a definitely a game changer.
If you’d like to “chat” more about chatbots and their place in your customer’s journey please feel free to contact the writer.