Wednesday, 11 October 2017

Creating Online Customer Conversations Through AI Powered Intelligence [Podcast]

Episode 180 features Miki Goyal, Chief Technology Officer at TimeTrade. Miki leads TimeTrade’s software engineering organization where his focus is leading the company’s product roadmap for their market-leading cloud appointment scheduling platform. On this episode, we discuss how TimeTrade is enabling automated appointment setting using Artificial Intelligence (AI) and machine learning capabilities.

In case you’re not familiar with TimeTrade, it’s a customer engagement platform fueled by AI powered intelligence. They connect people to their customers and prospects making it easy for them to schedule a meeting. Their appointment scheduling platform is used by banks, retailers, service organizations and tech companies to make connecting with customers easier and more efficient.

Integrating AI Into TimeTrade

TimeTrade recently announced the integration of Salesforce Einstein into their product. Einstein creates a lead score and determines probable actions to take. Once a lead score hits a threshold, an appointment request is automatically sent. TimeTrade enables automation to ensure lead follow up doesn’t fall through the cracks.

The appointment request can be anything from an email to a voicemail to a chat. Looking at email as an example, TimeTrade would email your contact with something like this: “Hi (firstname), this is Sally at (yourcompany). Please schedule an appointment to discuss _____. Here’s my availability…” There are options for personalization as the sender sees fit.


TimeTrade and AI in Action

The first use case in B2B sales, as mentioned above, is the use of lead scoring to create more efficient engagement with prospects and customers. Miki points out that it can also be used for keeping up with renewals, support tickets, and help to identify and minimize churn. By detecting churn signals, it brings up the opportunity to create proactive marketing campaigns.

Another way to use TimeTrade for B2B sales is with missed calls. If you don’t answer a call and it goes to voicemail, TimeTrade Voice can answer and book the appointment for you.

In addition to B2B sales, TimeTrade is also used by companies who work directly with consumers. Miki refers to this as “B2B to C.” Best Buy’s Geek Squad, for example, is powered by TimeTrade. Through the platform, customers can schedule appointments via the website, phone, text, IVR, or Chatbots. Customers on the service side of B2B to C use their product for onboarding new customers. I.e., if someone buys a new phone and an appointment needs to be scheduled for training.

A Full Spectrum View of AI

Looking to the future, Miki predicts a spectrum of changes and that AI will become a commodity. He says that AI will start to lean more towards predictions of future circumstances and how to prevent them, as opposed to merely reacting. He also mentions how engagements will continue to evolve, with less and less human involvement.

Miki also states that AI will fully own the transaction with deep learning. This has already started with Alexa and will only become more ubiquitous in the coming years. AI is transformational and will change the way people operate and engage.

Bernie’s thoughts….

I’m stepping up my coverage of advanced technologies used in marketing and sales, especially those using artificial intelligence and machine learning to help brands understand how they can use digital strategies to compete and win more business. Episodes such as this are not meant as an endorsement of the product covered here.

Source: B2C


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