Published on February 15th, 2019 | by Sunit Nandi


The Benefits and Dangers of Having AI Chatbots Interacting With Your Customers

The rise of chatbots is upon us. With the introduction of AI, the machines are giving human beings a run for their jobs. This may sound unbelievable but it’s true; these smart machines are capable of developing and learning on their own! Well, we do not blame the companies using them, as the advantages are too many to ignore. The other day I logged into my cable service provider’s website to inquire about the customer service center of Cox near me. To my surprise, an automated chatbot was answering my queries rather than a human being. I was impressed!

As cool as this may sound, there are a couple of downsides of AI chatbots as well. But don’t draw any conclusions yet. You need to first compare both the benefits and dangers that these smart machines come with.

Benefits of AI Chatbots

Let’s have a look at all the good things first and see how these give businesses an edge.

Always Working

Since chatbots are machines, they are at your service 24/7, 365 days. They never ask the employer for a break because machines do not get tired. They won’t ask you for a cigarette break or a lunch break. They do not even have to go home after working tirelessly for the whole day. Above all this, they do not ask for overtime pay either. In short, they are the best employees.

No Human Error

You can expect these chatbots to work almost perfectly. Because they eliminate the chances of human error. Not that it comes to them naturally. Through trial and error or finding patterns based upon certain trends, AI chatbots can replicate it all repeatedly. Therefore, the need for the chatbot to be programmed properly is also there. If done with precision, these chatbots can then have consistent customer interactions. Do you know what this translates into? No inaccurate responses or irritated customers! This, in turn, will make your customers happy. And we all know that satisfied customers are a huge asset for any business.

Data Collection

Perhaps, the biggest advantage of AI is the accuracy of the data that it helps to collect. You can collect actionable data from your customers in real time by appointing AI. It is a rather efficient method because collecting data using traditional methods can be time-consuming. But if you employ AI, you can save time apart from taking action immediately. You can learn about the buying patterns of your employees and the times at which they make the most amount of purchase, among other things. Moreover, you can also use the data collected to comprehend the performance of your chatbot. Hence, improving it further as needed.

The chatbots are continuously collecting and analyzing data, even when they are talking to a customer. Moreover, if they have had a conversation with a  customer in the past, they will recollect the previous conversations to better converse with the customer.

Personality Similar to Your Brand

Another advantage of AI chatbots is that they can develop a personality that is similar to your brand. Many people are reluctant in talking to an AI chatbot in their first conversation. Because they believe, it will be a rather awkward experience. Their fear is justified as the chatbots were nor powered by AI in the beginning. But now things have changed a lot. Before the incorporation of AI in chatbots, one felt as if he is talking to a robot. Well, practically he was. But the feeling was too obvious. Because the chatbots had a limited amount of responses. But now they can hold proper conversations fooling you into believing that you are talking to an actual human being. You can program you chatbot depending on your brand personality. It can be funny or low-key. You know better. The point being that chatbots today are capable of reflecting your brand’s personality.

Dangers of AI Chatbots

All the advantages stated above may fool anyone. However, you know better; there is a dark side to them as well.

Constant Supervision

Chatbots may have the ability to work round the clock; however, there is still a need for constant supervision. Because there will definitely be instances where the AI will need new inputs for new scenarios. Let’s face it, no matter how advanced, they are still machines. What if a customer asks it a question regarding a problem you haven’t taught the chatbot to solve. That will create an inconvenience, as it will not have any previous data to analyze. Therefore, it won’t be able to come up with a favorable response. So, you will always need somebody to guide it and feed information in it accordingly. If you do not have a supervisor to keep an eye on your AI, the chances of it going rogue are quite high.

Not Always the Best Improvisers

Well, humans are an unpredictable breed. You never know when one of them decides to behave in a rather crazy way. By crazy, I mean a reaction that is not common. Therefore, you need to be prepared for outliers as well. However, chatbots fail to do so at times. For every ten customers that might call you, one will most probably act in an unpredictable way. While humans can handle such situations well, chatbots fail to do so. They cannot come up with a response to cater to a unique behavior on the spot.

People and Manipulation

There will be instances when people will try to manipulate your AI systems into performing acts of evil. For example, getting them to use foul language or feeding incorrect information in them. Because the chatbots do not have a brain of their own, they will fail to do anything regarding this. People can even manipulate the chatbots into releasing sexist or racist statements. Therefore, you have to be very careful when you decide to employ these machines to help you.

Yes, this may sound scary but the advantages of AI chatbots outnumber the disadvantages. And it is the future of conversation with your customers. So, if you have not yet invested in this technology, it is high time that you do so.

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I'm the leader of Techno FAQ. Also an engineering college student with immense interest in science and technology. Other interests include literature, coin collecting, gardening and photography. Always wish to live life like there's no tomorrow.

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