Each year, Cloud-communication platform Twilio releases a State of Customer Engagement report, which reveals industry trends, powered by their platform that supports nearly 800 billion human interactions each ear.
The five biggest trends in communications from 2019 are:
- Consumers want real conversations
- Conversational AI is everywhere
- Robocalls kill trust in the phone
- Politics moves beyond the polls
- CX is the differentiator
The way businesses and customers interact is always changing and with an ever-changing technology landscape, its important businesses are across the channels consumers want to use.
With the number of channels continuing to grow, businesses can easily see the costs of supporting omni-channel communication escalate very quickly.
One traditional communication is being abused and consumers are giving up on it. That communication channel is the phone. In the United States, 58 billion robocalls were made in 2019 alone. While you can appreciate the efficiency of automating a marketing or survey campaign, if you annoy customers to the point of hanging up, you’ve lost them and will fail at your business objectives.
Instead, alternate forms of communication are taking off, ones that aren’t as intrusive.
One of the key trends identified in the report is the deployment of AI technologies in customer communications platforms.
AI is fundamentally transforming the way people communicate with one another and with brands. This transformation is driven in large part by conversational AI, which includes bots, virtual assistants, and communication platforms powered by machine learning.
Use of virtual and voice assistants continues to rise, with Google’s Assistant deployed across one billion devices, and Amazon reporting sales of 100 million Alexa-enabled devices in 2019.
Today, interacting with AI is common. However, the way most consumers engage it is still transactional, but as the technology improves, they’ll progress from handling basic tasks to more complex and multi-step processes. If people use UI and it works the way they expect, there’s a higher chance they try it again in the future.
Conversational AI is just getting started and when you can actually feel like you’re having a conversation with a human, rather than a computer program, then there’s a serious major business opportunity on the table.
Intelligent AI-driven bots could be used to create proactive, ongoing dialogue with customers, rather than one-off, reactive interactions. Resuming a conversation with a bot like a human. Just diving right back into a conversation you had last week, or last month. Currently, the bot’s context gets reset every time, but what if it could be persistent and ready whenever you need it.
When you properly leverage conversational AI and Natural Language Understanding, it could benefit every level of the business from day-to-day customer interactions to backend operations.
Consider what it means to truly understand what your customers are saying at scale. AI can turn anecdotes into real data, and provide true insight into how the business is performing.
When deployed with clear expectations of what conversational AI can deliver, brands can build trust in the technology, augment existing systems, and equip employees to do their best work.
The full report is available via the following link.