How AI and data analysis can help your business provide the personalized service customers demand
With Zendesk and Amazon Web Services (AWS), businesses can deliver personalized customer experiences at scale with a solution that grows with them and integrates into their existing tech stacks.
Last updated September 14, 2023
Businesses should know a lot about their customers. After all, most companies possess significant data about the people who buy their products and services. But here’s the problem: much of that data remains untapped.
Not being able to harness the power of that data means companies face real danger.
The ability to access, analyze, and surface data to the right people at the right time is at the heart of what consumers increasingly demand: personalized, immersive experiences in which they feel truly seen and heard.
These customers are no longer content to be “caller number eight” in line or receive “personalized” marketing emails that clumsily paste their names at the top. They expect conversational, omnichannel experiences that meet them where they are.
So how can companies provide these personalized, immersive experiences? By leveraging AI and data analysis, businesses can meet this demand while providing effective, personalized support. As Zendesk discovered in its CX Trends 2023 research, customer expectations have risen dramatically:
- 72% of customers want immediate service
- 71% demand natural, conversational experiences
- 70% expect anyone they interact with to have full context
- 66% want interactions to not interrupt their current action
- 62% think experiences should flow naturally between both physical and digital spaces
The sentiment is clear, and companies must pivot to meet these expectations. The good news is that these custom conversational experiences can be delivered with agility and at scale, without having to adopt new tools or significantly boost headcount. In this article, we’ll explore how AI and analytics can help your business remain competitive.
AI and data will drive modern, efficient service for both customers and agents
Conversational omnichannel support gives customers the answers they want, when they want them, on the channel of their choice. So what do we mean by conversational experiences?
At a basic level, conversations with customers should be friendly, warm, and natural. Support agents must have complete context at their fingertips, and crucially, these conversations have to be convenient. That means meeting a customer where they are (say, on the shopping cart page of an ecommerce site), and if that consumer needs to step away from the interaction, they’ll be able to return to it later without a hitch.
To deliver those experiences, AI and access to the right data at the right time are key. One powerful tool that continues to evolve—the AI-powered chatbot—will play an increasingly important role in meeting customer expectations. When Zendesk asked business leaders about AI-powered chatbots, nearly two-thirds reported their bots have become more human-like, and 69 percent of customers say that chatbots are getting better at answering complex questions and resolving issues quickly.
To continue boosting the efficacy of AI-powered bots, businesses need to be able to train their bots by quickly building and standing up environments to create models and generate synthetic data to enhance those models. Doing so will lead to chatbots’ ability to answer more difficult problems while becoming nearly indistinguishable from human agents.
It’s vitally important that the environments created to train bots run on a secure, trusted platform. Meanwhile, while chatbot iteration continues, the human side needs to make progress, too. Human agents must work more efficiently, and their employers need to use software to automate routine tasks and support workflows.
By using tools such as Zendesk’s Sunshine Conversations, Amazon Connect, and Amazon Lex, businesses can take advantage of the large amount of customer data on hand to truly personalize interactions and create conversational experiences.
Analyze customer sentiment and analytics for happier customers, more efficient agents
There’s another area where AI can play an outsize role in developing modern customer experiences: customer sentiment analysis. AI can improve customer satisfaction and identify at-risk customers (ones in danger of churning) by conducting customer sentiment analysis to gauge intent and tone.
That analysis, paired with automated routing and AI-powered workflows, can ensure the most experienced support agents handle tough interactions. Meanwhile, AI-driven analytics can help agents fine-tune their soft skills, identify common problems in your support organization, and illuminate issues with your product or how customers view your brand.
One thing to remember is that data analysis will only be useful if that data is shared with the right people at the right time. It’s critical to break down silos so insights flow seamlessly throughout your tech stack to the right teams.
Turn CX into a profit center, scale quickly and safely
Traditionally, businesses have viewed their support operations as being cost centers. That’s changing with AI and data analysis. For example, AI-powered customer sentiment analysis can reduce customer churn by helping businesses convert frustration into delight. And given the high cost to acquire new customers, it makes more sense to invest in operations that help you keep those you already have.
Meanwhile, AI and data personalization can help your business identify new revenue opportunities via cross-selling and upselling, boosting customer lifetime value. For example, AI-powered chatbots can surface the right products at the right time to your customers, and human agents with access to comprehensive data will have a much easier time identifying sales opportunities. (If this sounds like the lines between support and sales have begun to blur, you’re exactly right.)
To get there, you need a solution that features fast, out-of-the-box implementation that’s easily customized to fit your evolving business needs. As a bonus, consider a solution that has a wide range of integrations that connect with your existing tech stack. A reliable, safe infrastructure that resides on the public cloud and scales with your business is yet another critical feature to consider. Finally, data protection with enterprise-grade trust, security, and privacy will be crucial to your company’s success.
Get prepared for the future of CX
Customers have made it clear: They want businesses to treat them not as transactions but as highly valued stakeholders—as people. By leveraging AI and investing in robust data analysis, your business will lay the groundwork for lucrative long-term relationships with your customers.