How AI Can Help You Build Better Customer Engagement

Use these five best practices to boost customer understanding and to move the needle on your brand’s customer engagement.

Nearly half of US marketers polled in September 2021 have increased CX-related artificial intelligence (AI) investments in the preceding year, according to an Insider Intelligence eMarketer report. Companies are experimenting with various ways to use AI in digital marketing, including facial and voice recognition, personalized channel experiences, natural language processing to generate content and improved customer segmentation.

As experimentations, those strategies are far from proven strategies. To get the biggest CX boost from AI, consider the five strategies below:

Focus on Analytics with AI to Navigate Consumer Landscapes

More often than not people compare AI with chatbots, according to Matt Matsui, Calabrio chief product officer. “While AI is an efficient tool for automating tedious tasks, the real benefit of AI lies in its opportunity for analytics. AI-fueled analytics gives organizations the ability to recognize the intent and experience of customers.”

By understanding your customer base’s behaviors and feelings more comprehensively, you can understand context and act with confidence, knowing how to manage any given engagement to deliver a positive customer journey, Matsui explained. By using AI models like sentiment analysis and predictive Net Promoter Score (NPS), organizations can take a proactive approach toward staying ahead of the ever-changing consumer landscape. 

“Predictive NPS uses speech analytics to generate a score for every customer,” Matsui said. This information enables companies to intelligently route calls needing human assistance to the agent best able to handle the customer’s needs.

Artificial intelligence is key to meeting customers’ needs through analytics, which help reveal the context of the customer experience. 

Related Article: What’s Next for Artificial Intelligence in Customer Experience?

Maximize Conversational AI Effectiveness to Boost Engagement

Improving relatability can increase customer engagement and using collective insights from AI can dramatically improve your understanding of your customers. 

“The enterprise community must consider the benefits of leveraging conversational AI to bolster customer interactions,” said Andrew Freed, IBM senior technical staff member and master inventor. “However not all AI-powered virtual assistants are built the same and they can fall short if they were developed by either organizations that lack business or user context, or by business professionals who didn’t have the coding skills or system insights to build a sophisticated experience.”

Instead, a company should draw from the collective insights of customer service assistants, sales associates, marketers, business analysts and others to enable the conversational AI system to reflect the entire breadth of an organization’s knowledge, providing better CX, Freed recommended.

Without understanding how their customers express their needs and wants, enterprises — particularly those in healthcare and financial services — tend to use complex jargon, Freed said. For better CX, companies should mine customer input to learn how they express themselves, then use AI to improve the relatability of responses from virtual assistants.

Leverage Zero Party Data for Better Customer Information

Big data has been a key topic in the business world for many years, yet zero-party data has largely been ignored, said Andrea Polonioli, Coveo AI commerce product marketing lead. “This may become far more important to companies looking to harness the power of AI for improved customer engagement. Small data can play a big role in AI, and zero-party data is a key part of this.” 

However, Polonioli cautioned that collecting zero-party data can be challenging. Enterprises must ask the right questions, in the least intrusive and invasive way and offer a clear value exchange.

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