CX leaders are pioneering the use of new AI and machine learning technologies to enhance personalisation, customer intelligence and automate service-based processes for the first time.
To date, CX’s approach to AI has been tentative and exploratory. The focus has largely been on automation technologies that streamline customer processes, and surface-level data analysis. But now, leaders in the space are leveraging mature AI technologies that help them understand their customers with unprecedented clarity and detail.
The emergence of machine learning in CX will finally help businesses understand what their customers really want. It will give CX leaders the data and tools they need to drive continuous CX improvement that boosts retention and revenue.
Enhance personalisation with better customer intelligence
AI is now revealing the intent and sentiment of every customer, in real-time and on a massive scale. This has been enabled by recent advances in machine learning and natural language processing (NLP), coming together as a solution known as Communications Mining.
The technology works by transforming unstructured communications into structured data. Communications Mining can be used on any communications channel used by businesses - from email to phone calls and everything in between. For the first time, CX leaders have total insight and understanding over every customer and employee conversation.
Communications Mining extracts only the most valuable information from masses of communications for analysis. It has an accurate, contextual understanding of customer emotions, meaning CX leaders can fully understand and monitor the quality of service the business is providing.
Most importantly, Communications Mining is also able to extract intent information from any message type - from email to instant messaging and even phone calls. This means the solution can understand the reason or driver behind every message, and can report exactly what the customer wants. This provides CX leaders with a goldmine of customer intelligence, highlighting previously unknown issues in the customer experience, and revealing hidden business opportunities. This data will help provide greater personalisation, direct CX improvement in the most valuable direction, and drive new product and service innovations.
Automate more service-based processes
CRM and workflow applications have automated some of the most repetitive and time-consuming customer experience and service processes. But automation use cases in CX are expanding as automation tools gain more sophisticated AI capabilities.
The first wave of semantic automation has started to hit the industry as CX and service leaders embrace automation tools with an almost human-like understanding of customer conversations. This is driven by the adoption of more advanced machine learning and NLP capabilities.
Intelligent bots can now accurately and reliably respond to simple or transactional customer requests. As much as 50% of all requests that enter a contact centre are transactional in nature, and some of the most common can now be automated from end-to-end.
For example, requests to update account information, change passwords, or answer FAQs can now be automated from end to end with zero human input from the business. This is usually carried out by the more intelligent chatbot and email bot solutions.
The impact of this kind of CX and service automation has greatly increased efficiency, productivity and customer satisfaction. Handling times are reduced, human error removed from the equation, and customer agents are freed to focus their energies on the more complex and critical customer requests. Meanwhile, customers receive a faster service that is also higher quality, boosting retention and repeat business.
Operationalise CX to delight the silent majority of customers
Where CX has a good relationship with Operations or access to an integrated data environment, the value of communications data grows even more thanks to Communications Mining.
The limitation of relying only on customer conversations to drive CX improvement is that it overlooks the vast majority of customers who never provide any feedback. The silent majority. Only one in 26 unhappy customers ever complain, and 91% of these will simply leave and never come back. But if they don’t provide any feedback, how can CX address their needs and solve their issues?
The answer is to combine Communications Mining with Operations data. This is easiest where CX resources are diffused throughout the business and embedded in multiple business functions. CX practitioners should take the data extracted through Communications Mining and compare it with operational data extracted from the rest of the business. Where both align, CX practitioners can be confident that the voice of the vocal minority represents the views of the silent majority.
For example, did a change in your order execution process coincide with a rise in customer complaints about delays? Did an uptick in positive customer reviews follow the adoption of a new supplier? When data from Communications Mining and Operations is combined, you can see how your largest and most valuable customer base thinks and feels about their customer experience. And you know exactly what is driving these responses and what you need to change to directly enhance revenue and retention.
Transform customer experience improvement
AI makes CX better. The technology is providing a level of customer intelligence that would have been impossible only a few years ago. Through Communications Mining, CX teams know exactly how customers feel about their experience - at any time and during any part of the customer journey. Deeper automation provides a service that is swift, near-seamless and more satisfying than ever.
To find out more about how the leaders in CX are leveraging AI to guide CX improvement towards the most pressing issues and valuable opportunities, download our free guide on operationalising the customer experience.