BARE International shares an article by Daniel Hong for Forbes – How AI Will Disrupt Your Customer Service and Sales Strategy in 2018.
‘The promise of artificial intelligence (AI) has permeated across the enterprise giving hopes of amping up automation, enriching insights, streamlining processes, augmenting workers, and in many ways making our lives as consumers, employees, and customers a whole lot better. Senior management salivates over the exponential gains AI is supposed to deliver to their business. Kumbayah moments occur in meeting rooms as teams begin planning cycles that embed AI technologies in their strategic plans.
But here’s the half empty: AI requires a lot more resources than most people think. It is not a “set it and forget it” technology. The reality is models are constantly tuned and optimized manually especially for customer engagement where natural language is a foundational. To put it into context, AI is in the toddler phase when it comes to maturity level. But it’s growing fast as more ontologies are built, vector space models improve, and companies operationalize AI by using a broader workforce to conduct the tagging of customer interactions — called blended AI.
We believe that in 2018, the use of blended AI will help improve sales outcomes and reduce customer servicing costs. But, there are implications. A growing number of companies are using blended AI for customer-facing channels and sales tools. Today, Forrester released its 2018 predictions covering the impact AI will make in sales and service, and we believe that the effective use of blended AI will help improve sales outcomes and reduce customer servicing costs.
In 2018, we predict that:
- Customer satisfaction levels will drop as companies drive more traffic to chatbots, self-service, and chat that are not fully optimized to engage customers effectively. As companies look to increase customer engagement on digital lofty goals are being set particularly in the area of call deflection. Some companies have goals of decreasing call volumes by more than 50% in just under two years.
- More major brands will phase out email in favor of real-time customer-agent communications like chatbots and chat. Companies like Nike, Apple, Uber, Toys“R”Us, and Target have moved away from actively supporting email as a customer service contact channel.
- Having a successful AI-driven customer service or sales program will depend on the processes that support a blended AI approach. Humans will play a critical role in the ongoing optimization of AI.’
How will you make and meet your 2018 customer service goals? BARE International was born from the need for mystery customer research at the national and global level. Today, we set the industry standard as the largest independent provider of customer experience research, data, and analytics for companies worldwide. Let us take care of your customer research solutions to drive a meaningful change in your business next year. Contact us today for a complimentary evaluation.