Gaurav Jain, assistant professor of marketing at the Rensselaer Lally School of Management, examines how individuals make judgments, estimates, and decisions in the absence of complete information. Previously, Jain served as the chief marketing advisor at multiple firms. Below are his thoughts on the impact of artificial intelligence (AI) on customer experience.
Voice of the Customer
In today's hyper-connected world, the voice of the customer (VoC) is louder and clearer than ever. But how do we sift through this cacophony to understand what our customers are really saying? Enter AI. It's revolutionizing the way customer experience teams handle VoC programs, and as a marketing leader, I find this incredibly exciting.
Take direct customer feedback, for example. We're no longer just collecting survey responses and storing them in a database for quarterly review. AI algorithms, particularly those using natural language processing, are helping us instantly categorize and prioritize this feedback. Imagine an e-commerce platform that can immediately flag a customer's mention of "late delivery" in a post-purchase survey. That's not just efficient; it's customer-centric.
But what about the things customers are saying when they're not directly talking to us? That's where AI-driven sentiment analysis comes in. These tools can scan social media, forums, and review sites to gauge the sentiment behind a customer's words. I've seen hotel chains use this technology to monitor travel forums and review sites. If a guest mentions "noisy rooms," even without lodging a direct complaint, the brand can proactively look into soundproofing solutions.
Then there's inferred feedback, the kind you get by reading between the lines. AI can analyze customer behavior, like frequent page visits without conversion or cart abandonment, to suggest what might be going wrong. For instance, an online fashion retailer could use AI to figure out why a particular dress gets a lot of views but few purchases. Maybe it's the sizing, maybe it's the price, but the point is, you get to know without having to ask.
And it doesn't stop at gathering feedback. AI is helping us turn this raw data into actionable insights. We can predict future behavior, like churn rates, based on past feedback. This allows us to be proactive rather than reactive, which is a game-changer in customer experience management.
Finally, let's talk about what happens after we've gathered all this feedback. AI is ensuring that every customer who takes the time to share their thoughts receives an immediate and appropriate response. Chatbots can handle common queries or concerns, making the customer feel heard and valued right away.
So, from the perspective of a marketing leader, it's not just about the efficiency that AI brings to VoC programs. It's about the opportunity to deepen our connection with customers. By truly understanding their words, their sentiments, and even their behaviors, we can craft experiences that resonate on a human level. And in a world that's increasingly digital, that human touch is what sets a brand apart.
It's truly intriguing to observe how AI is weaving its way into the customers’ experience.
Online, chatbots are making waves. Chatbots are not just digital tools; they're our first point of contact, bridging the gap between brands and consumers. However, there was always the question of accuracy versus efficiency while managing these chatbots – AI has answered that question. AI chatbots provide real-time yet accurate assistance, making the digital shopping journey feel more interactive. Companies can reduce customer dropout while avoiding the expense of managing a large human customer service team.
AI is revolutionizing phone-based customer service as well. Voice recognition allows natural language processing for easier navigation, while predictive analysis anticipates caller needs based on their history. Enhanced personalization means customers no longer repetitively provide account details, and emotion detection aids in gauging caller mood. The result? Reduced wait times, more efficient interactions, and a significantly improved telephonic customer experience.
In essence, AI is bridging the gap between technology and human touch in the retail world, making our interactions with brands more meaningful and personalized. Again, companies can do this in a cost-effective manner.
Jain is available to speak with media - - simply click on his icon now to arrange an interview today.
Gaurav Jain Assistant Professor
Behavioral economist focused on studying how individuals make judgments and decisions in the absence of complete information.