Social Media

BOTS for Customer Service

April 20th, 2016 | by: Steve Pollack | Posted in : Customer Service , New Technology

In this day in age almost any task can be done or at least started online. As all markets gain an online presence we are faced with new issues with the changing culture. When almost all purchases are done online it is no wonder that there is not an online customer service presence. But like the automated customer service voice machine we are all familiar with, there is now the automated customer service online robot known as a “bot”.

Bots are now taking over most email, chat, and social media customer service. And like the voice message automated system, the online bots have their own sets of issues and kinks. This non-human-response system is upsetting customers as much if not more so than the dreaded voice machines. Bots, unlike voice machines, can learn trends of their customers and systems. This creates a whole new set of problems such as the Microsoft Corp.’s Tay bot, which started spewing racist, sexist and offensive commentary on twitter last month.

Bots are also widely used in social media today in almost every platform. The bots are used to make synthetic hype by “liking”, following, and commenting on posts to make the marketing look like its more productive and therefore the product more desirable. By synthetically making demand, there is potential for need of more supply by snowballing the synthetic demand with real demand. If a brand pays for synthetic demand (adding likes, comments, and hype) there is a possibility others viewing the hype may want to “jump on the bandwagon” and purchase the product. Although this strategy looks like it works on social media, the synthetic hype is usually easy to spot. Organic hype and demand is easy to spot when researching the brands’ social media platforms and customer interaction. With room for improvement, time will tell if synthetic hype and bots will be able to trick the human, organic customer.

While bots can create a quick and cheap way for customer service online, the risks are large at this point. Until bots are better programmed to lower risks it seems that human contact is the best bet for companies who do not want to be caught in the bot bogus. Hopefully, this bot trend will die out since no matter what the programming it is clear that customers will and most likely always will prefer to talk to a human contact for their issues with service and products.

So while the world tries to create an automated system run by programming and gadgets, the human race still kicks back with its need for human interaction.  Check out all our blogs at http://www.smsold.com and follow us on our “all-organic” social media platforms @smsold .

More on Microsoft Corp.’s Tay Bot here:

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-03-24/microsoft-removes-racist-comments-from-millennial-focused-ai-bot

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