Chatbots play and will be playing a major role in any kind of business strategy in the future simply because their technology has incorporated artificial intelligence.
In other words, what makes the difference is the combination of AI and chatbots, not chatbots alone.
Where does this answer spring from? Statistics can help us to better understand what it is in store for the future.
- 62% of consumers are willing to submit their data to AI in exchange of a better UX
- 9 out of 10 firms have invested in AI
- 15% of customer services interactions were fully managed by AI in 2020
The growth of AI voice assistance could reach 8 billion in 2023 (+ 146%), while the global chatbot market is expected to grow up to 10.5 billion US dollars by 2026. The only conversational AI market segment will jump from 4.8 to 13.9 billion by 2025.
However, the real critical datum is not given by the market growth forecasts, but by the fact that trust in AI’s analysis is a crucial factor in the decision of its adoption.
This means that what is really at stake is not AI chatbots’ productivity (even though the adoption of AI leads to important cost-savings in half of the cases), but market data mining and the ability to develop a robust market strategy that only AI generates.
Why are chatbots the future of marketing research?
The focus then shifts to the role that AI plays in marketing research and marketing strategy development, two activities that are continuously being performed through chatbot conversations. We call that: “chatbots conversational AI”.
The main point to keep in mind is that artificial intelligence can do much more than the mere imitation of standard human behaviors.
While answering a call, for example, artificial intelligence can profile the customer and learn in a flash much about his preferences, customer journey, fears, desires, and hopes, to craft the best possible personalization of the service.
Plus, all the data that AI picks up in every moment can be stored, combined with other data from other customers, and analyzed automatically to build, change, or adjust your marketing strategy in real-time.
Furthermore, AI can look through big data and discover hidden customer patterns or behaviors that the most attentive human eye would never detect.
In conclusion, chatbot conversational AI can develop an alternative machine approach to marketing that can bring higher performances at exceptionally low cost through the automation and improvement of a huge part of the marketing process.
And these results naturally come in with the typical advantages of classical chatbots: your organization is put into the condition to manage a higher and higher volume of conversations and interactions, which means more sales – and the availability of more valuable data to build an effective marketing strategy.
AI chatbots exploit the human preference for conversations
Web 3.0 marked the change from classical web pages to social media. A world that had been dominated by posts and articles (like a giant magazine) suddenly became a universe of conversations, comments, likes, sharing, and reviews.
The number of people that are involved in social media was estimated at 3.48 billion in 2019, scarcely half of mankind, which leads us to think of the existence of a kind of neuronal preference of people for conversations.
The human need for verbal and vocal interactions can be greatly exploited by artificial intelligence, as we have seen in the chapter before.
If we find it natural to speak to someone, no matter whether it be, AI chatbots are programmed to drill data from our conversations and build marketing strategies on them.
Cinema has predicted AI’s potentiality to become a human best friend. In Passengers (2016), a robotic bartender with artificial intelligence shows all its ability to be a good friend and have pleasant conversations, while in Metropolis (1927) a machine-woman shows the ability to replace a scientist’s lost lover.
Therefore, it should not sound surprising that conversations are deemed to be the present and the future of marketing.
Data mining is just one of the good reasons to opt for AI chatbots.
Another good reason relies on the people’s preference for conversations as an ordinary means to interact, buy and do business everywhere in the world.
Problems and limits of chatbot conversational AI
If the needs for AI chatbot market research and marketing strategies are the pros, the cons are that the user experience with conversational artificial intelligence is often bad for most users.
According to Forbes, in 2019 86% of consumers still preferred humans to AI. However, other surveys show more lenient results:
- 69% of consumers like chatbots, as chatbots are faster and available 24/7
- 73% are satisfied with chatbot live chats
- 40% of millennials admit to having nice conversations with their preferred chatbot regularly.
What is the problem with conversational artificial intelligence?
Mainly, the lack of empathy, but also the incapability to offer appropriate answers to users’ questions and needs in some cases.
These issues can be addressed today by utilizing appropriate technology and a strong and appropriate training of the bot during the process of machine learning.
The proof is that Facebook and Amazon have AI chatbots that are nearly able to perform like humans.
These two organizations are an interesting example of the benefits that a business can get by adopting this technology, on the condition to know the ropes and be able to make the right choices.
Conclusions: it is not about your money, but about your data
Chatbots are so important for any marketing strategy for several reasons that include:
- Personalization of the user experience with consequent improvement of the user’s engagement.
- Time-saving, cost-effectiveness.
- Constant improvements in the relations with customers.
But the number one reason to give preference to chatbots relies on the fact that they can embody artificial intelligence. That way, they magnify marketing research and funnel creation at a level that is difficult, not to say impossible, for humans.
It was said that tech giants run after your data, not after your money.
This sentence has never been so true as today, and it well explains why AI chatbots will drive the future of any scenario of marketing automation.