With rampant competition and innovation, businesses are considering new, better perspectives to win over the disruptive landscape. While the options are endless, the majority of marketers agree that ArtificiaI Intelligence in customer service is the single most critical differentiator to business growth.
Serving customers just as competitively is a strategy that translates into better brand value, rapid market expansion, and buoyant growth. In fact, researchers have observed that customers are willing to pay up to 16% more if they get a better brand experience. However, on the flip side, research has also shown that companies are drastically losing the human touch. Almost 80% of companies assume that they are delivering a ‘superior experience’ to customers, but when asked from customers, they have a different story. They say that only 8% of companies are delivering.
So, the pressing question is—why does this ‘delivery gap’ exist?
Through this blog, we will attempt to find out how companies can use AI in customer service and achieve customer-led growth by leveraging personalization. So, let’s dive right in.
The Right Recipe for Creating Personalized Customer Experience
Delivering the right customer experience requires a collaboration of seamless service design, micro interactions, and conventional user journeys. The process is holistic, and never really ceases to exist.
• Service Design: Service Design is an approach to understand varying customers’ interactions with a brand through the use of customer journey maps. It’s a goal that relates to service-level experience. The approach tracks user journey patterns across the whole purchasing cycle, which includes visiting a retail store, looking for a product, deciding to purchase, and receiving a discount, and delivers deep insights on how to personalize their experience.
- According to Forrester, CX quality can be measured by its:
a. Effectiveness: Does the experience provide value to customers?
b. Ease: Is it easy to get value out of the experience?
c. Emotion: Does the experience resonate well with the customers?
Curating individual scores to these questions will help in determining how successfully a company delivers customer experiences that create and sustain loyalty.
• Human Experience: The discipline of Human Experience is relatively new on the block, and describes how a human being experiences a product or a service after it’s delivered. Clearly, it’s quite holistic, human-centric in approach and perspective as compared to UX (User Experience) and CX (Customer Experience), which are more of an industry and a marketing term respectively.
Now that you know about HX, let’s try and understand how PX (Product Experience) with UX (User Experience) and HX (Human Experience) can create world-class CX (Customer Experience).
Let’s take the case of a typical millennial customer and his purchasing habits. He’s active on social media, and while scrolling his feed, he stumbles upon some products/services, and his interest makes him switch to the web—scouring websites, evaluating various products, and comparing prices. Next, he seeks assistance from a messaging bot and conducts a conversation regarding the product purchase he’s thinking over. To bring in the best quality, he also plans visiting a physical store and experiences the product/service in person.
This example highlights an important fact that customers want their experiences to be easy, valuable, and consistent. They want companies to be continually available at their beck and call and provide them with necessary support. Companies, therefore, must not only focus on streamlining customer experience, but also exploring viable methods to serve the ever-growing omnichannel landscape.
AI and Machine Learning in Customer Service
For enhancing the quality of Customer Experience, a business must focus on combining the forces of Human Experience and User Experience with the emerging Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning technologies.
While conversational AI has become a predominant agent of change, advanced image recognition, despite being a little underrated, has great benefits to deliver. For instance, you can analyze the faces of people in the conference and conclude using advanced algorithms that what they are feeling about the presentation. Neat!
Machine Learning can also be used in traditional IVR, a mobile app, where machines can quickly analyze user behavior patterns and make the most viable recommendations. The results, all in all, are tremendous.
AI can be used to blend multiple interactive channels as well. You may have a customer, who comes on a mobile phone, dials-in and speaks to a bot. Now, chatbot, which is a conversational interface, can ask some qualifying questions and take a web link generally on a website and drop it as a link via SMS / Messaging. AI can facilitate the entire journey by linking various channels and providing a frictionless user experience.
Defining the Amalgam of AI / ML with Human and User Experience
Almost 71% of buyers/consumers have a feeling that employees have a significant impact on their overall customer experience. However, across the entire employee sample, only 44% of respondents are well-aware of the customers’ needs. This discrepancy clearly suggests a delivery deficit.
We strongly believe that brands cannot solve their CX problems with technology alone. It’s just an enabler, a facilitator, and simply acts as a connection between a product/service and consumers. Instead, we strongly feel that brands must find ways to create experiences that feel immersive, engaging, and are peppered with digital technologies.
Below are a few recommendations, which can help brands ensure an amalgamation of AI and Human Experience with customer service.
#1 Personalization is an improving area where AI and Machine learning can help enterprises score big. These technologies can analyze mountains of data faster than humans, and help extract insights to create experiences just exactly how customers want.
- Airliners have been successful in providing delay alerts to customers using AI, thereby saving a lot of hassle. Many companies are analyzing customer sentiments during calls, all because of AI, and suggesting customized product offers. So apparently, the nuances of B2C interactions are taking a new shape in this era of disruption.
- However, a few sectors haven’t come up to the speed yet. For instance, Banking. How many times does a bank tell you that your account balance isn’t enough to pay for the mortgage, or your assets aren’t appropriate to lend security for loans? Never, really! It’s important for all industries/sectors to read the writing on the wall and step up their efforts to embrace and grow with AI. Now is the moment!
#2 Pumping investments in AI and Machine Learning in customer service can help enterprises uncover current and future trends. This is particularly instrumental in determining what factors will govern user experiences tomorrow and doing the homework today.
#3 A Gartner report, while stressing on the growing commercial value of Chatbots, has predicted that by 2020, 85% of customers’ relationships with business will be managed without interacting with a human. This clearly highlights the paradigm shift that marks the demise of 9-5 office hours. Chatbots are amazing for how they are always available to respond to customer queries with a human touch. They need no offices, no sleep, and no food, unlike humans. So, while your employees are away for lunch or in the bed, Chatbots can keep your business up and running 24x7. That means there will be no lost leads and no unanswered queries ever.
In order to deliver a world-class experience, we suggest:
- Setting up a goal, matching the compelling use cases, identifying the core few things which you can put on board and see those as are your marching orders.
- Acting friendly. A friendlier service, combined with ease and speed, is the most important element to create a positive customer experience.
To meet business needs better and build customer loyalty, it’s important that you concentrate on implementing AI and ML in customer service for sustainable growth and long-term business value. There’s never a debate settling otherwise.