There will probably be a time when Bots will be able to flatter our egos and tell us what we want to hear but this day has not yet arrived.
Based on the latest debates on the subject, we find that assisted artificial intelligence of bots still has a little way to go before reaching the conversational and social skills required to converse with human intelligence . By taking a closer look at the phenomenon of robots, we find that it is easier to give them a human appearance than to provide them with the skills peculiar to humans.
This means that we will have to wait a little longer before we have a version of Samantha, from the movie “Her”, in real life!
The Rise of Chatbots:
There is no doubt that Chatbots have made enormous progress since their creation decades ago. You can meet them today in different forms and they are able to solve many tasks, like helping consumers via Slack or sometimes even casually flirting with Tinder users.
Many companies have realized the stakes of these chatbots and the potential they represent for a brand. Some experts even say that Chatbots will soon dethrone applications as they are ubiquitous, easy to use and essential in our daily actions.
These experts are certainly right. Technology giants such as Microsoft, Google, Amazon and Apple have already bet big on this artificial intelligence based on database and automatic learning to make the bot more human like. For many of these projects, Chatbots most often serve as a bridge between artificial intelligence algorithms and people who try to communicate with them. This is how meaningful dialogues can emerge, and therefore commercial transactions.
This is why the demand for the interfaces of conversations tends to increase, supported by rather revealing cases. From the point of view of technology leaders, large companies in the finance, toys, food, media and automotive industries, for example, can now actively use Chatbots to have meaningful discussions with their consumers.
The benefits and success of an effective Chatbot are easy to see:
Scale: A single chatbot can handle thousands of conversations at the same time. This same bot can perform many tasks either in after-sales service or in terms of marketing actions, and this better than the appointed real agent team. This bot performs these tasks at a lower cost which increases the profitability of the company that chose to launch its bot in the long term.
Practicality: Chatbots promise an unprecedented level of practicality. This is justified when you see how many users use the “Assist” Chatbot to organize their applications to do daily tasks such as calling a taxi, booking a hotel, reserving a table, sending a gift to a loved one etc. . All these transactions have never been easier thanks to the Chatbot!
Customization: Chatbots can be programmed to build an organic personal profile for each consumer, allowing companies to deliver a truly personalized experience.
Versatility: Applications often have a specific purpose. Chatbots are known for their role as lawyers, doctors, stylists, caretakers, financial advisors, sports coaches, pets and even boyfriends.
Natural Interactions: “Chatter” is second nature to us and this makes our use of the Chatbot much more intuitive and easy than clicking on a multitude of buttons on a classic interface. In addition, the Z-generation, which represents the market of tomorrow, spends a lot of time on message applications, rather than on websites, which is a huge opportunity for companies that want to reach this target on email platforms .
When do Bots go wrong?
Even though Chatbots represent a strong interest in brands, some of them repeat the same thing over and over because of a huge lack of vocabulary and answers in their database. Others can not answer even a very simple question because their creator did not necessarily think of the fact that humans could ask stupid and unthinkable questions in a long time. And worse, some Chatbots fail even in their specialized field because they do not understand what consumers are asking.
A Know-it-all Chatbot
Do not try to create a chatbot that knows absolutely everything and everything people ask! Siri, for example, may possibly develop this ability but it is more interesting to specialize for a single specific purpose in order to engage your audience.
Solution: Define specific goals and identify the different cases your Chatbots might face. Do not try to solve problems that do not concern your bot. Instead, focus on a particular area and try to respond as effectively as possible to consumer expectations by keeping conversations in a comfort zone.
No Engagement Paths
The majority of chatbots used by companies still need human intervention to generate the best commitments. Never create a bot without first establishing a scaling string that corresponds to a map of the interactions defining different routes that your users can use during the conversation. All answers to questions or problems that may be raised in the conversation should be defined.
Solution: Make a summary of the different engagement paths so that your bot knows exactly what the scenarios may be. Make sub-categories so that your bot prepares for different scenarios and collect interesting data and possible consumer demands. It is necessary to build the knowledge of its bot in time and giving more time to the real agents to optimize the tasks.
Limited Linguistic Knowledge
This major issue can take form as the following:
- Inability to answer unique, complex, contextual, personal and unusual questions.
- The abusive use of familiar emoticons and expressions simply to appear human.
- Answers to certain human linguistics, the use of sarcasm, humor or insults.
For example, some Bots do not know how to arrive at the correct answer because of a poor understanding of natural language and a weak ability to break down sentences that do not coincide with the pre-established Bot library.
Solution: We must first manage the expectations of users. If necessary, let your bot admit that it did not understand and that it does not know some term used. At the same time, train your chatbot to improve its conversational skills by creating a language database so that it can always communicate by improving from session to session.
Inconsistent or Non-Existent Personality
There is probably a very few set of people who would enjoy talking to a robot that acts like a robot. That’s why technology leaders strive to make their Chatbots as human-likeas possible and try to establish a real connection with their audience. However, abusing emoticons and familiar language does not always work!
Solution: Make sure to create a Bot that includes visual elements (symbols, avatars), vocabulary, a certain tone, a personality in its own right that will make sense for your consumer target. After all, your Chatbot must represent the ambassador of your brand just as much as the human who creates or sells your product / service.
Lack of Consistency with your Company’s Business Systems
A Chatbot that has no clue about the company it is supposed to represent or the target to which it is supposed to address is a real disadvantage. Consumers want to optimize their time. As with after-sales service with real agents, consumers may lose patience quickly if your Bot constantly asks for their account credentials or if they are unaware of their purchases or their previous interactions with the company.
Solution: Allow chatbot to access relevant consumer databases, biographies, contact information with key people in your company, media and marketing information, brand CRM data etc that will allow it to generate much more value.
Neglected security and privacy
Certain Twitter users for example like to give a lot of false information that can destroy the brand’s reputation. Since your Chatbot represents your brand, you would not want such a thing to happen to it. In addition, if you have already integrated your bot into your CRM system, internal servers or other systems, a breach can destroy everything!
Solution: Adopt the best security procedures and ensure that your Chatbot is well protected from external attacks.
Interactions with a chatbot can influence your consumers to buy your products or to love your brand, or to hate and criticize it!
Since the benefits of Chatbots are becoming more and more proven, many companies are creating their own artificial intelligence assisted bots to improve their consumer service, marketing, sales, social media strategy on social networks. It should be remembered that the user experience remains the key that will contribute to the success (or failure) of your Chatbot strategy.