Artificial Intelligence (AI) is no longer science fiction thing. Tech giants working for years in intelligent application development based on API “cognitive”, with focus on Machine Learning (ML) and natural language processing. The aim is to create intelligent solutions that are able to learn about the world, and to create bots with intelligence and naturalness, and are able to interact with the user. In the field of marketing, customer service bots have already begun to work.
Microsoft’s Cortana Example
Microsoft is one of the companies that are making great strides in the field of Artificial Intelligence. For example, the Microsoft Cortana Intelligence Suite, a suite of advanced analysis and Big Data, has great potentials in transforming data into intelligent actions. Cortana includes the latest innovative technologies in Big Data, Machine Learning, and bot intelligence.
The new features that have come to Cortana, as announced by the company last July, are Microsoft Cognitive Services and Microsoft Bot Framework:
- The first feature consists of a series of intelligent APIs that allow systems to see, hear, speak, understand and interpret the needs by using natural forms of communication.
- The second feature is at the service that can build smart bots. It offers the possibility to users to hold conversations using natural language and on various platforms. Thanks to the initiatives like this; it makes it possible for the standardization of customer service bots occur in the near future.
The architecture of Microsoft Cortana Intelligence Suite is shown below (image from Microsoft)
In this scenario, chat bots offer an opportunity to contact with the user more directly and closely; this feature can be very useful for brands. These bots act within instant messaging applications, identifying user needs and offering solutions. For example, Facebook Messenger already allows the integration of these bots. WhatsApp have not yet permitted, but others like Kik or Telegram have already integrated bot into their customer services. The customer service bots are a very useful tool in marketing and e-commerce.
How to use bots for customer service?
Companies looking to offer products or services increasingly customized to each client. The customer service needs to be adapted to this reality and bots on social networks can help to achieve this. They can facilitate and make more effective interaction between the two parties. The customer may only chat with the bot, place an order, pay a bill and even track this command. Take Pizza Hut as an example; they have their own club on Facebook Messenger, which gives customers the ability to order his pizza and see his progression from time of order to delivery at the door.
Another impact on customer relations is the concerns of the pre-sale and post-sale support. Given their ability to absorb information about the client, the bots can provide tailor-made answers for many different situations. This allows, among other clients to support all bot throughout the operation of the product purchase decision.
Because the majority of companies are present on social networks (e.g. 85% of companies in the US use Facebook), the bot store opening on Facebook is another good reason to add social networking to its marketing strategy for companies that have not yet done. As mentioned above, the bots facilitate customer-firm trade and Facebook is full of potential customers (e.g Facebook has over 1.71 billion active users in 2016).
With the availability and advantages that the use of bots on social networks, it would not be surprising to see more and more companies join the dance. It just remains to whether technology will be better controlled to prevent outbursts such as Tay.
The great potentials for future customer services
The conversational bots offer strong potential service improvement and customer support. According to an Accenture report mentioned in the document CMF, 49% of Canadian consumers have switched suppliers in 2015 due to poor customer service. The bots would be able to respond to service requests by providing fast humanized support and live, while transferring complex cases for agents of customer service, says one.
Who knows what the future holds! As the world prepares for the inevitable hegemony of Artificial Intelligence, present and speaks through bots pilot and small developments in the fields of simultaneous translation projects, searches for voice or conversation with users, and the opportunities for digital marketing are there, just have to know to detect and arrive early.