How AI is improving the customer service experience

Artificial Intelligence is increasingly becoming the key to helping businesses provide the best possible customer service.
21 March 2018

AI-based customer feedback analysis provides much quicker, accurate results than traditional methods | Source: Pexels

I​n today’s customer-centric world, providing the right support to shoppers is vital in converting them to loyal customers. Get this wrong and you will lose customers who are likely to broadcast their experience to the online world- with the probability of causing damage to your brand.

An increasing amount of consumers are turning to online platforms such as social media and review websites to either voice their own opinions of a brand, or use the opinion of others to inform their own purchasing decisions. Today, the power of the consumer in influencing your sales has never been greater.

Research has found that 91 percent of consumers regularly or occasionally read online reviews. And this is having a significant effect on their opinions of a company. For instance, 74 percent of consumers reported that positive reviews lead them to trust a business more, and 60 percent say that negative reviews make them not want to use a business.

Therefore, the ability of businesses to understand and respond to customer feedback with speed, accuracy, and consistency is critical to business survival.

Fortunately, artificial intelligence (AI) is the key to success in this.

In order to keep up with the mountain of customer data across multiple channels,  businesses are turning to AI and natural language processing (NLP) tools to track and address feedback from their customers, making it easier to gage a real-time understanding and reaction.

Before the advent of AI and NLP, companies would analyze their customer feedback using traditional text analytics methods. A common approach involved creating lists of keywords or ontologies and then searching for these terms within a dataset. This process could take a large amount of time to set up, not to mention the significant amount of resources and labor involved in maintenance.

Luckily, AI and NLP-based approaches are enabling companies to move away from these traditional time and resource-consuming approaches.

Luminoso is an example of a company which uses AI in conjunction with NLP and machine learning to help businesses understand their customer feedback.

The system analyzes the text-based feedback of customers, identifying patterns and trends within this data. From this, businesses can leverage these insights in order to improve customer experience.

The software works by turning language into mathematical vectors using ConceptNet, an open-source semantic knowledge base, which essentially teaches computers to “think” like humans.

This application of AI encases the words and phrases used by customers, as well as the common-sense relationships between them. From this, computers are able to understand the human language, as well as learn new words such as slang and acronyms.

Using AI to analyze customer feedback has dramatically shortened the amount of time taken to both understand and respond to feedback quickly and efficiently. As well as this, the use of AI in text analytics has enabled businesses to hear their customers on multiple platforms, ensuring no detail is missed.

Finally, as AI-based customer feedback analysis is automated and less dependent on the intervention of an analyst, more consistent results can be produced. All of the data is processed in the same way, removing the potential for human bias.

Thus, when used efficiently, AI can have a profound impact on your customer interactions. The technology can significantly improve customer feedback, which in turn, increases customer loyalty, having a significant impact on your bottom line.

Those organizations who leverage the full potential of big data can increase their operating margins by as much as 60 percent. So the question is, are you making the most of yours?