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Why conversational bots are reshaping the world of customer engagement
The incredible rise of social messaging shows no signs of slowing down. The rate of WhatsApp, Messenger, WeChat, and Viber users is gradually exceeding top social media networks. And more social messaging users means more interactions of higher volumes. Is your team ready to tackle this challenge?
Let’s zoom in on the landscape of social messaging. To many companies, this world is still an undiscovered territory full of secrets. Compared to traditional customer service channels, these platforms require a different modus operandi. WhatsApp conversations, for instance, play by different rules than old-school phone calls. In a time when customer competition is fierce and social messaging channels are omnipresent, every brand building opportunity counts. With chatbots on your side, you can unlock a world full of new opportunities.
A multitasking miracle
The key difference between old and new communication lies in synchronicity, reporting options and the amount of relevant data that can be extracted from a conversation. Think of synchronic communication as a real-time conversation between two people: a face-to-face talk or phone call, for example.
Asynchronous communication is when two (or more) people can communicate without the requirement that they are ‘present’ at that exact moment in time. Like an email or a Slack message, they are unbound by time and presence: they can be read and followed up later. The internet has made asynchronous communication possible. In fact, you probably communicate in an asynchronous style more than you think.
The undeniable advantage of this form of communication is that it increases flexibility to people’s response time, and it allows them to manage conversations in a ‘flow state’. They become able to manage communication around the work itself, while increasing productivity significantly.
From cost focus to value creation
Because customer service departments are traditionally perceived as ‘cost centers’, efficiency and cost reduction play a major part in managing them. More interactions and higher social messaging volumes are often viewed as threats, rather than opportunities. Let’s look at some reasons why they open the door to chances instead:
- You can learn more about your customer’s needs
- You can collect more relevant data to optimize your customer journey
- You can connect with your customer on their preferred channel, which leads to higher customer satisfaction
- By becoming a better listener and expert communicator, you can achieve conversational excellence
- With the help of social messaging, one customer service agent can manage up to ten conversations at once
Now imagine your customer service agent managing one hundred conversations instead of ten. When used correctly, artificial intelligence, machine learning, virtual assistants and bots can help achieve such outstanding results. Customer service agents can work even more efficiently and help reduce the total cost of ownership while feeling empowered by the experience itself; everyone wins.
Why bots are more than buzzwords
Artificial intelligence, machine learning, and bots are not just hollow trends. They are all the rage because they offer incredible advantages and tangible results:
- A smooth-running and efficiently working customer service department
- The ability to handle peak volumes with ease
- The technology is self-learning and feels authentic to your customer
Adding conversational bots to your customer service mix improves communication between machines and humans. Like questions about products; offering a list of options, or even finalizing a customer’s order. But character and intelligence are also involved.
Think of your bot as the thoughtful chatroom friend you can always rely upon to get you out of the grumps:
A bot is an intelligent virtual assistant that autonomously solves customer questions, quickly and at a fraction of the current costs. The virtual assistant is always in a good mood, never needs a break and always delivers a message that is consistent with your customer’s experience. The bot is self-learning, so the quality of its output keeps improving because the nature of conversations becomes more apparent. That data can then be used to enrich customer profiles or to optimize other aspects of the business process.
The same artificial intelligence can be used to simply route messages to the right agent or department. The bot of the future will support the agent, instead of the other way around. By sharing hints you can work together across multiple channels.
A bot can reduce customer service costs with about 66%, helping you transform a cost center into an engine for revenue.
Bring on peak volumes
Routing and automation also play an important role during peak communication moments. To customers, there is no greater annoyance than long waiting times. With a bot on your team, your department can easily scale up during rush hours and provide each customer with the right answer. The bot can even assign incoming questions to the right agent based on word recognition; it can detect the subtle nuances in both written and spoken dialogue. As a result, bots are becoming increasingly sophisticated, responsive, and more ‘natural’.
About 80% of all customer service questions are based on FAQ’s; the perfect material for chatbots. Having that said; the magic lies in exceeding classic question-answer situations and turning them into sales-generating conversation.
Real talk delivers real results
Today’s AI-based chatbots are more intelligent, more responsive, and very useful — and we’re likely to see a lot more of them in the coming years. Some of them offer a remarkably authentic conversational experience, making it difficult for customers to determine whether the agent is a bot or a human being. Because messages feel innately personal and real, customers feel truly understood and cared for.
Bots have been impacting customer satisfaction for some time now, and some of the results are beyond impressive.
SaySimple is on your side
Building a chatbot is one thing. Teaching it to understand the context and complexity of your customers’ question is a different story. We can code, deploy and integrate your bots on all leading messaging platforms. With the help of our Eazy dashboard, only one API needs to be connected in order to activate multiple channels. We are happy to consult you on what solution is best for your customer service department; the possibilities for offering rich and meaningful chat features are endless.
Interested in more? Get in touch for a personal SaySimple demonstration, free of charge and without obligation.