Companies are entering new levels of technical sophistication, with an every-growing pool of customer data available to them, while consumer expectations soar through the roof and some more in our intensely digitized present. It is no wonder that digital transformation has been high on the growth agenda for companies. Among the many components that make up the complex, long-term project that is digital transformation, artificial intelligence has been an attention magnet for business leaders across industries.
However, how do you tap into the power of AI and use it for the creation of customer experiences that can drive your company’s growth? Here are just three tips from our recent webinar, AI and customer experience: How brands can fuse them for actual value, led by Dr. Ayesha Khanna and our CEO, Mani Gopalaratnam.
Why are you getting into AI?
Because it has to do with your bottom line. More specifically, implemented effectively, AI can increase it.
Knowing this alone, of course, isn’t enough. What business problems are you trying to solve with AI, and how? What technological capabilities do you have at the moment, and how will they accommodate your AI activities (or not)? What data do you have? What is missing?
Technology for technology’s sake will only lead to wasted expenses. Discuss with your entire team and identify the specific objectives that AI should help you achieve. Develop metrics by which the success of this project can be tracked.
For most companies, quite a few of those goals will revolve around the customer—in particular, engaging them more effectively, understanding them more fully, and providing experiences that deliver greater growth impact.
Data. Data. Data.
AI cannot be expected to just “do its magic” after being introduced to your organization. Any AI project will be a gradual process, and it can only better over time as it learns. New products, customers, trends, and more will emerge, each changing the shape of your AI project in different ways.
Perhaps more importantly, AI will deliver nothing without the right data.
You need to use not just one source of data, but many. In fact, to get the most benefits, it is critical that you bring all the available data sources within regulatory boundaries into one place, and continuously feed such evolving to your AI models. This, again, will be a step-by-step process, requiring technology that can accommodate such an expansive data integration effort.
There are some important questions to be asked in terms of your data. What is the minimum amount of data required to not only understand your customer sufficiently and provide them with a relevant, engaging CX? Next, what data sources do you have? What don’t you have? And do you have the capabilities to consolidate all the information from these sources?
Then, have you mapped out a comprehensive process and acquired the necessary tools to act on the data with the help of your AI technology? When it comes to CX, AI is not just supposed to expedite your operations. It should ideally elevate your interactions with the customer beyond the purely transactional—by, for example, deriving their intents and optimizing communications over time. As consumer habits shift in the aftermath of COVID-19, you need to leverage AI-enabled insights to deliver seamless, contextual experiences across emerging digital channels.
Privacy and security
There is a fear-mongering tendency to pain the advent (or rather, further enhancement) of AI as some dystopian future coming into form. While many of those narratives are merely superficial mis-diagnoses, there is the very real worry people have about their privacy and data security.
The line between personalization and privacy invasion can easily be blurred, to the horror of your consumers, if you fail to act as a good steward of their data in not just your AI-driven efforts but all digital activities. This entails abiding by all the relevant regulations in different target regions, and never infringing on the privacy rights of your consumers.
As AI will most likely be utilized to augment your personalization capabilities, it is imperative that you can acquire a 360-degree view of the customer without comprising sensitive information. This can involve several things: a Golden Record of the customer, robust encryption and tokenization measures, rigorous access control, as well as effective audience identity management.
For more insights, watch our webinar AI and customer experience: How brands can fuse them for actual value now.
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