June 24, 2022

An Overview of Conversational AI

Chatbots have been an integral part of customer support, HR, marketing, and sales for quite some time. 

An increasing number of businesses and industries heavily rely on these smart algorithms to help them with automating their processes, minimizing operating costs, reducing customer attrition, and keeping ahead of the competition. 

However, traditional basic chatbots are somewhat limited in their performance as they are used for answering simple questions and handling uncomplicated tasks that don’t require critical thinking. 

But companies that really want to take things to the next level should consider implementing chatbots enhanced with conversational AI. 

This article will cover the basics of conversational AI and explain why it’s so crucial for organizations to adopt it. 

What Is Conversational AI? 

Conversational artificial intelligence (AI) refers to the synergy of traditional speech-enabled software, like chatbots, virtual assistants, and voice recognition apps, and different subsets of AI such as natural language processing (NLP) or natural language understanding (NLU). 

In other words, this advanced technology leverages synthetic brainpower to enable machines to process and understand human language as well as to respond to it. Basically, NLP and NLU allow chatbots to make sense of what people are saying, while machine learning (ML) provides the system with the ability to discover hidden patterns and adapt to new data, thus independently learning to communicate without human intervention. 

Conversational AI will transform your average chatbot capable of only uttering a set of predefined phrases and sentences into a powerful speech-enabled tool that can capture the context and provide intelligent responses. 

In short, we’re talking about a combination of several technologies used in building automated messaging and speech-enabled applications that can engage in human-like conversations and interactions between computers and people. 

What Are the Benefits of Conversational AI? 

The global conversational AI market is valued at $4.8 billion at the moment, while this figure is expected to reach $14 billion by 2025. 

This stat, although impressive, doesn’t mean much in terms of convincing organizations to adopt this fast-growing technology. That’s it’s important to put things into perspective by discussing the benefits of implementing conversational AI  

1. Reduction of operating costs 

AI-powered chatbots can automate and streamline customer support, but not at the expense of quality of service. 

Instead of spewing out a number of generic, predefined phrases, they can offer relevant answers to customers’ questions, provide links to useful resources, and even have full-fledged conversations without the need to include human agents. 

Companies investing in this technology won’t have to hire additional staff, which will slash their expenses dramatically. A single human rep can talk to only one customer at a time, while an AI conversational system can handle several calls simultaneously. 

2. Superb customer service

Exceptional customer experience is crucial for the success of any business. 

That’s why companies need to ensure that their customers get high-quality service as quickly as possible throughout their customer journey. 

But, conversational AI chatbots can go well beyond answering some commonly asked questions. The AI aspect allows them to collect, process, and analyze customer data so that they can learn more about every customer in the process. 

That’s how these intelligent programs can personalize the next interactions and delight customers, which will, in turn, reduce customer churn. 

3. Agent efficiency 

Conversational AI can handle all kinds of tasks, such as helping customers fill out a form, checking an account balance, verifying the status of an order, or even onboarding a new customer.

With such an approach, human support reps can provide more value as they can focus on more complex and delicate cases that truly need their attention. 

4. Collecting  valuable insights  

Customer data is a game-changer in sales in marketing. 

Companies can use accurate details about customers to reach out to their target audiences with personalized messages, learn more about customers’ preferences, and ultimately increase sales. 

Conversational AI can be trained to collect and analyze relevant information that can offer valuable insights into customers’ needs and pain points. 

It’s clear that conversational AI will completely transform the way organizations approach customer support and different business processes. This scalable technology has the power to significantly improve workforce productivity, reduce costs, and keep customers happy. 

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