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29.09.2023

Artificial intelligence in customer service

In an ever-changing business world where technology plays a key role, it’s no surprise that customer service is no stranger to the latest developments. Artificial intelligence (AI) has the potential to transform customer service and take it to a new level of efficiency and personalisation.

72 per cent¹ of companies in Europe that are already working with AI in customer service are seeing significant benefits, e.g. they see a reduction in the workload of the service department, benefit from increased efficiency and have the ability to offer service around the clock. In addition, according to a study² most executives (78 per cent internationally, 79 per cent in Germany) believe that generative AI will make the development of products and services more efficient, user-friendly and inclusive. They also expect AI technology to make the customer experience more interactive and engaging (71 per cent internationally and in Germany) and customer service to improve through automated, personalised support (67 per cent internationally, 61 per cent in Germany).

In this blog post, we take a look at how Artificial Intelligence is influencing customer service and what opportunities it offers for the future.

 

Good customer service in the era of AI

In an era where customers are highly connected and more demanding than ever, customer service is becoming the crucial interface between companies and customers. This is where artificial intelligence comes into play. Modern AI technologies such as chatbots and automated processes are revolutionising the way companies interact with their customers.

 

ChatGPT & Co.: The transformation of the contact centre

The integration of artificial intelligence into customer service goes far beyond simple automation. Technologies such as chatbots, which are based on AI, offer immediate support around the clock and can handle standardised requests autonomously. This allows staff to focus on more complex enquiries and personal contact.

 

AI as a co-pilot for your agents

One promising aspect of AI in customer service is the idea of an “augmented agent”. AI can support agents by providing relevant information and solutions in real-time. In this way, employees become experts who are empowered by AI to help customers more efficiently.

 

The future of AI customer service

The evolution of AI customer service is far from over. Over the next five years, we expect to see groundbreaking changes. Companies should prepare to incorporate AI even more into their business strategies to better anticipate customer needs and further improve the customer experience.

 

AI as a tool to improve the customer experience

One of the main benefits of Artificial Intelligence in customer service is that it can help companies optimise the customer experience. By analysing customer data, AI can help identify customer frustrations and provide personalised solutions. This personalised interaction leads to stronger customer loyalty, greater satisfaction and ultimately brand loyalty.

 

Not all bots are created equal: understanding the functional differences

It is important to recognise that not all bots are the same. The differences between different bot systems can be significant. Companies should therefore understand the various uses and functional differences of bots in order to get the maximum benefit from them.

 

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Examples of Artificial Intelligence in Customer Service

The integration of AI in customer service has already led to impressive results in many companies. Companies that harness the power of AI can offer customer service that is fast, personalised and highly responsive. Here are some concrete examples of how AI is helping to improve customer interactions. These examples illustrate how AI enriches customer service in a variety of ways, helping companies to strengthen customer loyalty and increase operational efficiency:

 

Chatbots for quick answers:

Chatbots are widely used today and provide customers with the ability to ask questions and receive instant answers 24/7. One example is the use of AI chatbots on corporate websites or in messaging apps such as Facebook Messenger. These chatbots can answer frequently asked questions, provide product information or help solve problems without customers having to wait for a human response.

 

Personalised recommendations:

Artificial intelligence analyses the behaviour of customers to make personalised recommendations. This can be based on past purchases, search queries or browsing behaviour. When companies use AI, they can offer customers products or services that match their individual preferences and needs.

 

Voice assistants for even more convenience:

Voice assistants such as Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant have long since found their way into our households. This technology is also used in customer service to assist customers with enquiries or bookings. By allowing customers to voice their concerns, interaction becomes more seamless and convenient.

 

Automated ticket processing:

AI can be able to analyse incoming emails, calls or messages and automatically generate tickets or route them to the right departments. This speeds up the process of handling requests and allows the right staff to be deployed more efficiently.

 

Emotional analysis:

AI systems can recognise and understand emotions based on the way customers speak or write. This makes it possible to recognise emotionally charged requests and respond appropriately. For example, agents could be informed when a customer is obviously frustrated in order to address the situation sensitively.

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AI in customer service: opportunities and challenges

The use of artificial intelligence in customer service presents opportunities, but also challenges. While automation and increased efficiency are positive, companies also need to ensure that the human aspect is not neglected. A balanced use of AI and human interaction is the key to success.

 

Conclusion: Using artificial intelligence in customer service as an opportunity

In summary, artificial intelligence in customer service holds enormous potential to improve the customer experience and at the same time increase the efficiency of business processes. Companies should be open to change, see technologies like chatbots as support for their agents and actively shape the future of AI customer service. Through a balanced use of AI and human interaction, companies can create a synergy that not only enables efficiency gains but also greater customer loyalty and increased satisfaction (agent experience). AI-enabled customer service is still in the early stages of its evolution, and the coming years promise groundbreaking changes that must be harnessed to deliver even better customer service.

 

¹Report „The AI revolution: creating a new customer service paradigm” by Servicenow

²Study “Harnessing the value of generative AI: Top use cases across industries” by the Capgemini Research Institute

 

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As an expert in social media, Johanna is always in tune with the times and has an intuitive feel for trends and developments in customer service.

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