Across almost every sector, businesses are using Artificial Intelligence (AI) to improve their products, streamline their services, and drive higher levels of customer satisfaction.

Nowhere is this more evident than in the Customer Experience (CX) space, with Gartner expecting CX to represent the lion’s share of AI’s $1.2 trillion business value by 2020.

But just what exactly is the opportunity that AI represents? In answer to this question, here are 10 ways that AI can supercharge CX:

1. Being there for customers at all times

Incorporating chatbot tools into websites has moved customer service into the 21st century. Gone are the days of customers having to put up with restrictive call centre opening times, annoying hold music and the impersonal “your call is important to us” automated response. Incorporating increasingly advanced AI-powered chatbots allows businesses to solve any problems their customers might have, whenever the customer needs; all day, every day.

2. Creating ‘breakthrough’ customer experiences

Done the right way, AI allows organisations to combine ease of use with speed, essentially creating memorable ‘wow’ moments for customers. For example, Domino’s Pizza allows customers to order through Facebook Messenger, using AI to interpret demands and even order in the form of emojis. This creates a genuinely memorable experience for customers.

3. Enabling CX teams to understand their customers better

CX teams have always had surveys, customer reviews, and call centre logs as part of their arsenal. AI adds an additional layer to this toolkit, enabling teams to extract meaning from the millions of words written by previous, current, and potential customers.

AI allows CX teams to create appropriate automated responses to negative social media posts, meaning issues can be dealt with quickly and effectively. It can even extend to understanding the overarching themes within messages, the categories that responses fall into, as well as the sentiment behind customers’ words. In the end, understanding what the customer is feeling and being able to respond to it appropriately means the customer gets a better overall experience.

4. Brands can become more customer-focused

With cumbersome, costly, and time-consuming manual data collections a thing of the past, time and price are no longer restrictions to acting quickly and effectively on customer feedback. AI moves quickly, gathering and processing data so fast that it leaves companies with no good excuse to ignore their customers’ opinions and feedback. Using this data to get things ‘right first time’ empowers businesses to do their best work and to deliver their best experiences.

5. Making the most out of big data

For years, CX professionals have talked about the benefits of big data. Without AI however, this data hasn’t been able to deliver the value expected when it comes to Customer Experience. Now, thanks to AI, brands are able to analyse customer data faster and at greater volume, turning their customer data into instant actionable insights.

6. AI creates unique experiences for the customer

Using AI, brands can personalise experiences for each customer based on their past data and previous behaviours. For instance, brands can offer the most relevant promotions, product recommendations, or tailored homepages. By customising content in this way, CX professionals can drive up brand loyalty and customer satisfaction, ultimately creating a more enjoyable and memorable experience.

7. Preventing problems before they occur

One of the most innovative ways CX professionals use AI is through predictive models designed to identify potential issues before they occur. Dubbed ‘invisible CX’, this is a method of steering customers away from predictable problems that the data can see coming, and they can’t.

8. Making every interaction smarter

AI can turn each customer interaction into a rich data set, which joins itself to millions of other interactions. This enables the business to see a complete 360-degree view of their customers and recognise those issues that couldn’t be identified by viewing a single customer’s data in isolation. Using this view, CX professionals can generate positive improvement actions and streamline their overall CX approach.

9. AI enables customers to get what they want

AI has led to revolutions in image recognition, a technology which is indispensable for industries such as retail. Using this technology, customers can take a photo of the item they want to buy and share it with a sales person or an e-commerce site. Using image recognition, the item can be immediately found and ordered, increasing sales and creating a more streamlined experience for the customer.

10. Facilitating human interactions at key touchpoints

AI is superb at taking on the more mundane, repetitive tasks that certain jobs require. By resolving the issues that come up repeatedly and answering questions that get asked continuously, AI can create more time for workers to concentrate on the tasks that require a ‘human touch’. Rather than losing out to AI, handing over these elements of the job allows for crucial human interactions to be more focused and meaningful to customers.

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