Chatbots Using Artificial Intelligence are Selling Insurance in 2019

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In fact, over $2B is estimated to be invested throughout 2019 in these InsureTech companies. Artificial Intelligence, Automation, and Blockchain are driving technology disruption in the insurance industry. They are making insurance shopping experience much better for consumers.

Meanwhile also improving service for policyholders who need help with renewals, claims, and add-on products and services. This is great news for just about everyone, while some insurance agents are getting really worried. Fear of losing their job due to technology is a valid fear. But the good news is that great insurance agents are not going anywhere. Even though AI chatbots are selling insurance and assisting policyholders in 2019, they will always come back by a great insurance agent.

Why Insurance Chatbots?

Well, technically insurance chatbots have already been around for some time.

Insurance Giants like Geico and Allstate have already been using them in their business.

Here are a few more reasons chatbots are being developed and used:

  • Next-gen chatbots are becoming more and more utilitarian. The term “utility” in this context means something we find so useful that we turn to it on a daily basis without hesitation. The focus would be on improving the competence of the chatbot to execute specific tasks flawlessly, rather than try to be a catch-all conversationalist and source continued engagement.
  • Chatbots are personalizing customer experiences. Successful chatbots will work to understand using machine learning over time to learn and understand the nuances of the user’s requests and improve the first-contact resolution. The greater the ability to personalize responses will make the customer experience even greater.
  • Chatbots are now specialized. Users need to know exactly what the chatbot
  • does and be confident that it will do these things well. For example, Leadsurance’s chatbot for insurance agencies does very specific insurance tasks, flawlessly. First, it segments a user into either an existing policyholder who needs assistance or a consumer looking for a quote. And then it executes the quote needed or provides the assistance requested. This means customers can get 24/7 help through the bot instead of trying to connect with an insurance agent.

So, now you can see why chatbots are more than just a fad.

They are actually really useful to consumers, policyholders, and insurance companies.

Saving everyone time, improving the experience for everyone, leading to better relationships and better business. Resulting in serious disruption in the insurance industry.

How the New Technology Works

Although many of these new tech companies aren’t about to give out their secret recipes, here are some things we learned about the new technologies while demo-ing products.

  • Chatbots can integrate with a wide variety of existing insurance marketing and CRM systems. Even legacy systems being used by old insurance companies can be integrated with Leadsurance’s chatbot for example.
  • Chatbots can be customized for your agency. Just about every aspect can be customized so that your chatbot is fully branded and even represents the messaging your agents would use in a conversation.
  • They don’t sleep. Your website will be monitored 24/7 to assist your existing policyholders while also quoting new prospects.
  • They’re clever. You can customize them to do and say just about anything. Want to collect people’s emails before starting a convo? No problem. Want to wait till the end and then also politely ask for a phone number? That can be done. You can even have the bot take the user to different pages on your website and continue the conversation helping them through forms and other activities performed on your website.

What We Thought About the Bots

So, as you can see, we didn’t get to view the code under the hood.

However, from the chatbot products that we test drove, we can tell that the tech is already powerful. When we talked about future roadmaps and plans for these technologies, we realized that these bots really are the next big thing in the insurance industry. Admittedly, there was something cool about being greeted by a little humanoid thing on the screen, that quickly warmed me up and learned my name.It then proceeded to give me a personalized conversation and experience shopping for life insurance quotes.

It was engaging. It was quick. It was easy. All important things to the modern consumer, especially in 2019. But like we already said, even though AI chatbots are selling insurance and assisting policyholders in 2019, they will always come back by a great insurance agent.

 

 


This article was originally posted on – https://www.wired.com/story/autocomplete-presents-the-best-version-of-you/

How The Development Of AI Has Advanced The Technology Available For Chatbots

Artificial intelligence (AI)-powered chatbot platforms are taking the world by storm and revolutionizing diverse industries, but before AI was commonplace in chatbots, they were powered by different technologies that were not necessarily intelligent. Chatbots existed as early as the 1960s, and they have rapidly evolved since the development of AI. Today, chatbots are capable of performing incredible feats that come very close to human thinking and thought-processes.

 

This mimicry of the human thought-process comes from a chatbot’s ability to set goals and pursue them autonomously without any specific instructions — an ability referred to as a chatbot’s agency. This ability (AI) is the reason why chatbots are making a splash in areas such as customer service and sales today.

Chatbots Revolutionizing Customer Service And Sales

I think chatbots are the future, especially in customer service and sales. Here’s why:

1. Intelligent Chatbots Can Provide Preemptive Customer Service

Feeding on thousands of chats and their data, smart chatbots can be trained to recognize important patterns that indicate distress, frustration and annoyance and respond to issues before they escalate.

2. Smart Chatbots Can Reduce Training And Operation Costs 

While human customer service agents need to be trained from time to time, based on new products and emerging customer behavior trends, intelligent chatbots need to be trained only once. They are self-learning and update knowledge autonomously.

 

3. Autonomous Chatbots Can Handle Customer Service 24/7 

With human customer service agents, you have to hire in shifts to enable 24/7 customer service, which can double your operations and training costs. Autonomous chatbots can enable the same quality of service at no extra cost.

4. Intelligent Chatbots Can Scale The Volume Of Customers Served

From a logistics perspective, human customer support agents can face bottlenecks with support queries. Chatbots, on the other hand, can attend to customers simultaneously without deteriorating the quality of service provided.

5. Smart Chatbots Can Personalize Support With High Accuracy 

Sales managers may fear adoption of chatbot technology because they assume that bots take away the human touch and lack personalization. The opposite is actually true. Intelligent chatbots have the potential to greatly personalize conversations, based on their vast stores of highly-organized data that humans can’t compete with.

Stages Of AI, And How They Can Be Applied In Chatbots Of Different Kinds

Over the years, bots have evolved in their intelligence and abilities, shedding old avatars for newer and more advanced ones. To understand what AI technology’s development has done for chatbots, you have to be exposed to the stages of AI’s evolution and what each stage had to offer in terms of abilities.

Stage One: Cue Readers

Chatbots in stage one have no real ability to understand what you’re saying and simply pick up phrases from your speech that they then match to an internal database before spouting scripted answers. However, such chatbots have the interesting ability to insert amusing fillers in conversations to prevent their lack of knowledge from betraying their limited capabilities. That’s why developers don’t fully ignore stage one and give it some importance, as the later stages pay little attention to emotion and personality in conversations.

Stage Two: Form Fillers

Chatbots in stage two are designed to perform very specific tasks such as making a restaurant reservation or ordering food for delivery. These chatbots have built-in forms that specify all the information that they need to receive from customers and continue making conversation with people until they have filled all the blank spaces. Such chatbots not only go by important phrases but also follow certain rules written by their programmers.

Stage Three: Intent Readers

Chatbots in stage three are akin to talking encyclopedias and are trained to run search queries for the information they need to converse. Such chatbots are constantly indexing information in massive databases from which they pull facts when needed. These bots can do much more than just state facts — they can also identify the part of speech being used by customers and accordingly generate answers to satisfy those queries.

Stage Four: Connection Makers

Chatbots in stages one, two and three are inept at holding long-running conversations with customers. This is because they typically read each sentence of a conversation separately without making interconnections between sentences. Bots in stage four, however, store histories of conversations and can draw from them to make highly coherent and relevant answers. Such bots are even capable of learning based on previous conversations and can constantly improve their ability to have conversations.

Stage Five: Problem Solvers

Chatbots in stage five understand the core problem that a customer is trying to solve. While you could program bots in stages one to four to search for solutions based on certain phrases, bots in stage five can solve such problems more efficiently. For instance, if a customer wants to catch a bus to a destination at a certain time, bots in stages one through four can check if such a bus is available and relay the information, but bots in stage five can suggest alternatives if such a bus is not available.

Stage Six: Companions

Chatbots in stage six are what developers dream of and sci-fi authors write about. Built somewhat like the robot Sophia, chatbots in stage six should have the ability to maintain dynamic and broad conversations that are not limited by subject or depth of any sort. Such bots can replace humans completely in most situations that require autonomous-thinking.

Autonomous chatbots are changing the world every day, and I think a future where such bots run most business tasks is not far away, considering the continuing development of AI and the technology that supports chatbots.

 


Article originally posted on – https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbestechcouncil/2018/05/23/how-the-development-of-ai-has-advanced-the-technology-available-for-chatbots/#77aa4099c213

Can AI and Chatbots really transform customer support?

Chatbots are changing the way companies and customers interact: two billion-plus customer-company conversations in Facebook messenger can’t be wrong. Join this FB Live event to find out how to create engaging human-to-AI agent experiences, and leave with actionable ideas on implementing AI-powered customer support.

Here’s a wild, off-the-cuff guess: You might have heard that AI is ride-or-die for companies that want to stay competitive (possibly also somewhere on this very site). You might have also have heard that it’s expensive, complicated, too difficult to implement or too hard to control.

But for consumers, there’s a growing interest in chat interactions with companies — look at both the two billion conversations companies conduct with their customers over Facebook Messenger every month; look at the study that found 49 percent of customers would prefer to interact with companies via automated methods than any other medium. And companies like Marriot, Sephora, Coca-Cola and 1–800 Flowers are starting to see returns.

Credit the growing sophistication of AI-powered tools and machine-learning bells and whistles that support an engaging, civilized chatbot-customer interaction. Add to this the number of popular consumer platforms that support business chatbots, from Facebook Messenger again to WhatsApp, WeChat, Slack, and more. But building your own sophisticated in-house solution is also easier than ever.

With chatbots, you can answer basic customer queries in minutes (Booking.com reports that most issues are handled in five minutes or less, via their chat agents). Just think about the 80/20 rule which often applies in customer service: the same questions are asked 80 percent of the time. Integrating chat into this equation can bring not just significant ROI, it also means your human customer service agents are engaged in handling the more important, business-critical issues that arise (and happier doing more complex, meaningful work, too.).

Chatbots never sleep, so someone with insomnia and a pressing question, or global customers across a spectrum of time zones, will always be able to contact your company and get their basic queries and requests handled.

And chatbots armed with AI-enabled personality can even help uphold your company image.


This was originally posted on – https://venturebeat.com/2018/04/25/can-ai-and-chatbots-really-transform-customer-support-vb-live/

Survey Clearly Shows That AI Can Greatly Improve Revenue

Image result for aiAI, although fundamental for customer insight, cannot function effectively if it can’t harness the correct data across the business.

But companies have challenges when implementing new marketing techniques — especially in light of the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR), which comes into force on May 25.

San Francisco, Calif.-based AI marketing company Blueshift has released a report detailing the current use of AI and future plans for its use across businesses.

It worked with SurveyMonkey company TechValidate in February 2018 to survey 200 business-to consumer companies about use of AI, access, and use of customer data.

It wanted to see the types of AI techniques being used, challenges encountered with customer data, and the major obstacles to AI adoption across industries. Its study shows that 64 percent of brands want to increase their use of AI in the next 12 months.

Companies are working out that the ‘right data’ to use is first-party data, gathered from their own customers acquired with the customer’s consent and trust. This is in contrast to third-party data that has been packaged and resold.

This data is usually acquired in the course of doing business with a customer, who has provided explicit consent to its use by the brand, as long as it is not sold or used by others.

This seismic shift toward first-party consent has ramifications across the industry, as brands pivot their businesses to ensure they capture relevant data — direct from the customer.

The study showed that 64 percent of businesses have started to use AI to expand their audience base, and for product recommendations and campaigns. Most brands anticipate increased usage of AI in the near future.

However, only 6 percent of brands reported using advanced AI and predictive capabilities to its fullest extent.

Almost all respondents (92 percent), said that one or more of three factors — analysis, access or unification — was a major challenge that prevented them from making better use of customer data.

Over half (54 percent) saw analysis as a top challenge, followed by access at 46 percent and unification at 41 percent.

Yet, activating more customer data, and using real-time data to frequently segment customers, was reported to have a significant impact on revenue performance

Survey shows that three quarters of businesses improve revenue with AI ZDNet
(Image: Blueshift)

Respondents reported a 1.4-times uplift in revenue goals when using 75 percent or more of customer data compared to companies that used 75 percent or less.

Activating more customer data for AI-powered outreach is important for enterprises. Putting your customer data to work using AI will give you real-time behavioral data that your customers generate.

You can then use your engagement and transaction data across multiple touch points and channels to ensure the maximum possible conversions for your brand.

AI and machine learning can produce background checks on people and companies in minutes instead of days.

IT pros are not confident their organizations have the skills to take advantage of AI

Although enterprises want to implement chatbots in the workplace, privacy concerns are an issue for some.

Qordoba adds AI emotion scoring to product content to improve user experiences

The ability to gauge emotion in product content helps brands measure that the brand is on message across all products.


This article was originally posted on zdnet – https://www.zdnet.com/article/survey-shows-that-three-quarters-of-businesses-improve-revenue-with-ai/