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Getting Closer to Your Customers with Conversational Banking

December 03, 2018

Online and mobile banking may have introduced amazing convenience for the customer, but they also removed much of the personalization from the banking experience. Conversational banking, which relies on chatbots and/or voice and text applications, has the potential to right this wrong and evolve digital banking beyond a purely transactional experience.

That’s because this new channel can unify and automate much of the most common transactions, marketing, customer service, and advice in one simple, customer-centric interface.

Completing the customer journey

Using Artificial Intelligence (AI), text or voice applications can help customers monitor and manage their accounts, seek out and act on financial advice, review and purchase new products, and much more. These are all common customer journeys that can be completed without human intervention.

To be effective, conversational banking applications must:

  1. Determine intent – Applications must determine intent within open-ended dialogs that often contain slang, dialects, abbreviations, and misspellings. The may narrow in on a customer’s intention by using examples, clarifications, and confirmations. Once intent is discovered, a predefined journey can guide the rest of the interaction.
  2. Offer an exceptional experience – A good conversation is an enjoyable one, so applications should provide context and relevancy to each interaction. For example, a text-messaging interface can use pictures and video to help move a customer through the journey of opening a new bank account.
  3. Provide context – A some point in the customer’s journey, he/she may need assistance from another application or a human agent. Preserving a transcript of the conversation for a smooth hand-off is essential for creating a closed loop and reducing friction when completing the customer’s request.
  4. Ensure privacy and security– Depending on the origin of the conversation, such as on a third-party social media site, the application should avoid transmission of Personally Identifying Information (PII) by moving the conversation to a secure web form or the bank’s mobile app, or by linking accounts.
  5. When deployed effectively, conversational banking can provide unique insights about the customer, while improving efficiency by fulfilling customer needs without human intervention.

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Tags: Digital Innovation