Tapping into Heightened Revenue Potential in Your Customer Conversations with AI

Each year, your sales teams have tens of thousands – even millions – of written conversation with your customers. But few enterprises know how to tap into these conversations and make a real difference to their revenue and CX. At CogX 2022, we found out exactly how you can do this . . .

Imagine for a moment the thousands of conversations that are happening right now in your enterprise. Team members are talking to each other. They’re talking to other teams. But most importantly, they’re talking to your customers. These threads of conversations flow through many channels: Microsoft Teams, WhatsApp channels, emailing platforms, ticketing systems, social media, and more.

At CogX 2022, Ed Challis of Re:Infer and John Veichmanis of carwow illustrated the power hidden in these threads. Applying conversational AI, you can make entire tapestries with them. Tapestries that show you patterns in your organisation; patterns of both success and failure. With these patterns, you can transform how you act within the organisation and interact with others as a business.

The “carwow” Story

Veichmanis, the COO of carwow, introduced the audience to the carwow brand. An online platform where you can buy or sell a car. Using the reverse marketplace model, carwow removes the need for customers to negotiate with dealers when buying or selling their car. From Kia to Tesla to BMW, you can buy or sell any car there. So, how does it work?

Customers make inquiries and the representative responds. The customer can also ask for a test drive. Each year, these conversations add up to a mind-boggling 20 million written messages. carwow discovered that by assigning a separate team of individuals to go through these messages, they could improve, quite dramatically, their customer experience and the chances of sale. But this clearly cannot scale for 20 million messages.

Here’s where conversational AI can work powerfully.

The Intent Behind Words: How Conversational AI Can Help Transform Businesses

Challis picked up the presentation where Veichmanis left off and showed how conversational AI was applied to the carwow business case. Conversational AI is the brainpower that makes machines understand, process and respond to human language. You see this in action every time you speak with an Interactive Voice Response (IVR) agent or chat with a virtual assistant. The AI algorithm can parse through human language and pick out intents. And then respond accordingly.

Re:Infer has transferred this ability across the entire field of communication that happens in an organisation. Conversational AI can go through tens of thousands – even millions – of these individual threads and help a business pick out the intents behind the words. It gives a chance for the revenue or support teams to respond to their customers more meaningfully and accurately.

Re:Infer provided all the carwow teams with a no-code platform to parse through these unstructured conversations and pick out customer intents. What makes it all the more powerful is that Re:Infer can be integrated across a range of core systems and communication platforms such as ZenDesk, HubSpot, and Microsoft Dynamics.

In the words of Challis, “[Re:Infer] gives businesses a way to statistically measure good conversations and do A/B testing with them.” It’s all about attribution, measurement and truth, rather than intuition, guess work and opinion.

The Results Speak for Themselves

Challis has an obvious fondness for numbers. He shot through a series of insightful numbers, which helped carwow substantially increase its effectiveness in sales and creating the right experience for the customer. They include:

  • Managing expectation: increases the chance of conversion by 40%
  • Establishing needs and understanding customer priority: increases the chance of conversion by 20%
  • Making it personal: increases the chance of conversion by 10%
  • Guiding the buyer: increases the chance of conversion by 20%
  • Pushing promotions too early: negatively impacts sale
  • Customer mentions a competitor: that conversation has 140% higher chances of conversion than others
  • Sharing bad news early: 10% net positive impact on sale

But you might object that there’s nothing new in any of this. Every salesman ought to know these things. However, by introducing conversational AI the sales and revenue teams can now statistically measure their own effectiveness on the most important KPIs.

But what about companies that don’t have such enormous amounts of data? For AI to be effective, the data must reach a critical mass. We asked Challis for his thoughts.

“Even smaller teams that don’t have so many conversations can know what their conversations are about.” His emphasis was on insight and business intelligence. Business leaders and even entire teams who have a direct understanding of the problems on the ground, but who don’t have the data to substantiate their opinion, can now act with confidence.

They do have data on their side. The trick is to extract value from it.

Find Out More About Cogx

Find out more about CogX and all the speakers that attended the three-day event right here. And check out the hashtag #CogXFestival22 for more insights from throughout the conference.