Talking to computers can be frustrating. You often feel like you’re talking to a machine, trying hard to sound like a machine, so that the machine understands you. If you’re fortunate enough to be understood the first time, often the response is just as robotic as you tried to be. You will get your question answered but the interaction was purely transactional with no personality – boring.
The introduction of conversational AI has allowed business to infuse some life and personality into your traditional chatbot experience. Yes, it’s upped the game in its general capabilities. It allows them to learn from and better respond to customer enquiries. As if not more importantly, they take out the boring and infuse some personality, making the entire customer experience more enjoyable.
Conversational AI falls under the broader umbrella of Artificial Intelligence tools that enables computers to hold natural-sounding conversations with people. It empowers people to communicate with machines as if they were human and is slowly revolutionizing the way we interact with technology.
Whether you’re an agent, a customer or a business, conversational AI allows bots to be designed to communicate like a human.
Informational chatbots can respond to narrow and simple commands. These are the chatbots you’ve interacted with where you guide yourself through a series of simple questions to find your simple answer, without having to engage a live agent.
Chatbots that are powered by conversational AI are more than just simple auto responders. They are, instead, computer programs that mimic human conversation. They can be used for a variety of purposes, but the most common use is for customer service.
Traditionally, chatbots have been limited to responding to specific keywords or phrases. A chatbot powered by conversational AI is a chatbot that has been enhanced with the ability to understand natural language. This means that the bot can understand the entire context of a conversation, which makes for a much more user-friendly experience.
When we talk to people, we tend to use familiar pronouns, like "you" and "I." Computers, on the other hand, traditionally use less familiar pronouns, like "it" and "them." But as conversational interfaces become more common, we're starting to notice more human-like pronouns in digital communication. That’s because we humans would prefer to speak to humans than computers. Computers that can be tweaked to make us feel like we’re being spoken to AS humans gives us the sense that we are being spoken to BY humans and that makes our customer experience that much more enjoyable.
Digital assistants with which you’re likely familiar, like Siri and Cortana, use "you" and "I" to create a more personal experience for users. And in some cases, digital assistants even use a person's name when speaking to them. This helps to create a more human-like interaction, and it makes users feel like the assistant is actually listening to them. After all, which is more appealing to hear?
“It. Is. One. Hundred. And. Three. Degrees. Today,” or “Good morning, Sally! It’s going to be hot today and hit a high of 103 degrees. Do you want to know tomorrow’s forecast, too?”
The first interaction will get you the information you’re seeking. The second will make you feel like you have a friend in the room who gives you what you want, and more – both personality and engagement for more information.
As conversational interfaces become more common, we'll see more devices that use natural language to communicate with users. This will allow users to interact with devices in a more personal and natural way, and it will also help to create a more human-like relationship between users and devices.
One of the main reasons we need more human-like communication in devices is because we're starting to use them more and more. They are getting more familiar and more prolific, making them an increasingly large part of the everyday lives of friends and businesses.
In the past, we've used these devices mainly for tasks like checking the weather or sending emails. But now, we're starting to use devices for tasks that require more conversation, like scheduling appointments or finding information.
In these cases, it's important for the device to be able to understand natural language because it allows users to communicate with the device in a way that's more natural and comfortable. By using human-like pronouns, digital assistants can create a more personal experience for users, and they can make it easier for users to interact with devices.
Digital assistants have come a long way in the last few years, but many late adopters are holding off because they feel they aren’t worth it, for a number of reasons. Many people still find digital assistants to be awkward and frustrating to use. Digital assistants are still relatively new, and they often can have trouble understanding natural language, leading to awkward and frustrating conversations with devices.
In some cases, digital assistants don't understand what users are saying, and they end up providing the wrong information. Digital assistants are also often slow to respond to questions. This can make it difficult for users to carry out a conversation with a device.
The detractors who don’t like or trust digital assistants need not worry about the chunky, potentially frustrating experience with a chatbot. They just need to find one powered by conversational AI. Natural Language Processing (NLP) and conversational AI will improve the overall experience with digital assistants and will remedy the pain points many people feel with this burgeoning technology. As digital assistants improve their understanding of natural language, they will respond more quickly to questions, making it easier for users to communicate with them.
Because conversational ai interfaces look to mimic human personalities they improve the user experience. The concept of anthropomorphizing nonhuman entities goes back to the ancient Greeks, who believed that all natural objects had spirits. In the modern world, this idea has been applied to everything from animals to inanimate objects.
Giving human-like capabilities and characteristics to a non-human entity is known as anthropomorphizing, and it has been shown to improve the user experience in a number of important ways.
It’s true, that ‘Sally’ might just want to know the weather and isn’t too concerned about that information coming from a bot. But, a bot that understands that Sally might also want to know tomorrow’s a forecast, will slowly convince Sally that she can get more out of her bot than an answer to her question. She can get actionable, future based information she hadn’t thought to ask for.
This is the difference a bot with a personality can make. That’s a bot that ‘cares.’ That’s a bot that can offer more human-like interactions. And, as Sally is ultimately a human, she will grow to appreciate a bot that speaks to her accordingly.