Customer experience is a major differentiator for companies. And with the rise of voice technology, businesses are gaining an improved ability to better understand customer needs and sentiment. As customer conversations are analyzed, companies will be able to more quickly and easily identify appropriate actions to take to improve customer experience.
As Amy Brown, founder and CEO of Authenticx, said in the recent webinar The Importance of Voice Technology for Customer Experiences, her company was founded to “help humans understand humans” with technology, including voice technology. This is ultimately the goal of any implementation of voice tech in the realm of customer experience: to empower your employees to better understand your customers and support them.
Let’s take a look at four of the ways that voice technologies are changing the landscape of customer experience, now and in the coming years.
4 Ways that Voice Tech is Improving Customer Experience
There are a range of possible impacts that voice can have on customer experience, depending on where a company is at in adopting these technologies, the abilities of the particular tools that a company is using, and what the company’s overall goals are.
1. Turning Audio into Text
One of the primary ways that voice technology is impacting customer experience is by providing new avenues to analyze customer conversations. Audio data is notoriously difficult to deal with; if you want to extract insights for your organization, you need to turn that audio into text.
Through automatic speech recognition (ASR), businesses can create transcripts of spoken conversations in order to get insight into customer interactions. Transcripts create a searchable database of conversations that can be mined for information to improve products, services, and customer support. This text data can also be used for things like internal machine learning projects.
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2. Real-time Listening
Another way that voice technology is impacting customer experience is by giving businesses the ability to listen to and understand customer conversations in real-time. This allows companies to address customer concerns and questions as they are happening. Real-time listening can be used to, for example, help agents on the phone easily find the right information quickly, or suggest marketing assets to sales team members at the right time in their conversations with prospects.
As customer service becomes more conversational, businesses will be better equipped to provide excellent customer support by using real-time listening to understand what’s being discussed and empower agents to more quickly and easily respond.
3. Understanding Emotion, Not Just Words
By understanding customer emotions and needs, businesses can take actions that improve customer experience. Businesses can do this by finding ways to understand customer emotion, not just the words their customers say. Emotion recognition, for example, aims to determine how a speaker feels emotionally, rather than what it is they’re saying. Emotion recognition can be further augmented by sentiment analysis, which seeks to understand whether a person feels positively or negatively about a topic.
Most sentiment analysis tools rely only on text, but in the future, voice tech will help businesses look at factors such as tone, pitch, and intensity in order to gauge how a customer feels about a product or service and to conduct emotion recognition. This information can then be used to help businesses improve customer interactions, customer service, and the products and services that they offer.
4. Virtual Assistants
Virtual assistants are another way that voice technology is impacting customer experience. With virtual assistants, businesses are able to provide a personal customer experience through automated customer support. This can be done by answering customer questions and providing help with simple tasks such as reordering products, making reservations, and changing addresses.
Although the current generation of virtual assistants can be a pain to deal with—if you’ve ever shouted, “Agent!” over and over into your phone, you know what I mean—the insights that can be derived from smart voice tech can help eliminate these problems, driving smoother experiences that let customers solve their own problems. This helps keep customers happy while letting customer service agents focus on the complicated, high-value cases that AI isn’t as good at handling.
Virtual assistants are also able to learn about customer preferences over time, which allows them to provide an even more personalized customer experience, building customer loyalty over time.
As customer service becomes more conversational and voice technology adoption continues to grow, businesses will be better equipped to provide excellent customer support. The future of customer experience is looking bright, and with the help of voice technology, we can expect even more improvements in the years to come.
If you’d like to learn more about how voice tech is changing the face of customer experience, register for our upcoming webinar, The Future of Voice Technology to Improve the Customer Experience, to get expert insights into where the field of customer experience is going, and how voice technology is going to be a major part of that future.