When chatbots first became a thing, they were underpinned by a rigid technological framework. Developers had to give them precise instructions for giving automated responses to customers. Relying solely on static scripts, these chatbots were hugely limited in their capabilities, often leaving customers with frustrating experiences due to their lack of adaptability and natural interaction.
Thankfully, the technology began to shift course. Companies like Stena Line Ferries started to explore their options, including live messenger chat, app integration, and even a hologram. With Air Alaska and Expedia also in the game, travel was fast becoming a hotspot for chatbots. Over time, the AI automation industry started taking off in all kinds of exciting new directions.
Next-generation AI assistants
Fortunately, today’s most advanced AI assistants have come a long way since those early days. These smart communication tools are now designed to have more human-like conversations with customers and better understand their needs. With intelligent language capabilities, they can dynamically adapt to various customer queries to offer more personalised, relevant support. This has unlocked a wealth of opportunities for customer service leaders across all kinds of industries to enhance customer interactions, reduce response times, and even improve team productivity.
The best AI assistants today give you everything you need for customer service automation success:
Natural language processing
At the heart of these next-generation AI assistants is natural language processing (NLP), which is the key to unlocking their full potential. It means an AI assistant can not only recognise what customers are saying in any language, but also what their choice of words says about what they might be feeling, what information or help they need, and what they expect to happen next. You can use all of this insight from NLP to deliver exceptional customer service that is empathic, proactive, and personalised. These days, you can’t have a decent AI assistant running without it.
The best AI assistants on the market today offer unlimited integration possibilities, so you can maximise efficiency. Your AI assistant could connect with your CRM, help desk, or e-commerce platform to access customer information and order history, or even manage support tickets (like our resident AI assistant Clawson) without any intervention from your team. This makes far better use of your resources and customers can enjoy a consistent experience across every one of your channels, whether they’re chatting with your team or your AI assistant.
While AI assistants are becoming increasingly clever at understanding and engaging with customers, you still need a human in the loop working on it behind the scenes to help your AI assistant become a true expert in everything you do. Your customers will rely on your AI assistant to answer highly specific queries about their account or transactions and your unique offers, products or services, so you need a team of AI experts, writers, analysts and psychologists on hand to help train it and make sure the conversations it’s having with your customers are always improving.
In today’s interconnected world, customers expect to interact with businesses through a variety of different channels, be it email, WhatsApp, mobile apps or more, and be free to switch easily between them. To meet this expectation and offer consistently good customer experiences, your AI assistant must be able to provide good omnichannel support. Improving your omnichannel customer experience not only enhances customer satisfaction, it makes it easier for your team to manage conversations, track customer interactions, and offer a unified approach to support, regardless of where conversations with your customers are happening.
The most recent major advancement in the world of AI assistants is using large language models (LLMs) like ChatGPT to make it even easier to launch and run one. You can now use LLMs to quickly generate ideas to train your AI assistant or take any content you already own to feed it into your AI assistant’s conversations. Using AI to automatically generate content in this way is speeding up customer service processes and leads to more fluid, engaging, and accurate customer experiences.
Grand View Research anticipates the global market size of generative AI like ChatGPT will “reach USD 109.37 billion by 2030,” so we’ll only see more and more benefits to using LLMs as the technology accelerates.
You don’t need to know anything about AI to launch an AI assistant
You only need 5-10 of your most common customer questions to launch a next-gen AI assistant and it learns the rest on the job.
It’s now as easy as clicking a button to turn all the content you already have about the most pressing subjects customers ask about daily into automated AI assistant responses. You won’t need weeks of workshops with input from developers, engineers, AI consultants or any kind of technologist. Any member of your team can launch an AI assistant in just minutes and the most advanced AI assistants don’t need hours of training to get going either.
With an advanced platform, everything you need to grow your AI assistant is built in behind the scenes. All you need do is check your dashboard and you’ll start to see patterns in the conversations your AI assistant has with your customers from day one.