Conversational Banking: Moving Beyond Chat to Conversation

March 22, 2018

An increasing number of banks and credit unions continue to invest in Conversational AI technology to drive digital engagement and streamline communication, both internally and with consumers. Yet, with the excitement of possibility inevitably comes “noise” and “hype” around the technology.

The Financial Brand published an article claiming the limitations of a chatbot, specifically their ability to “hold a conversation”.

“Chatbots cannot hold the conversation which means it cannot answer multiple questions at the same time.”

This is not true. It depends on the vendor.

In this post, I’m going to outline a specific capability prospective buyers of Conversational AI systems should expect from vendors and help clarify between the nuances that can make or break conversational experiences for consumers and employee alike.

This feature or specific capability is called multi-step, multi-initiative dialogue. It’s what’s needed to go from basic chat to robust conversation.

While there have been advancements in natural language processing, it’s not determining a person’s intent that’s most challenging, it’s the management of the dialogue. Any practicing Conversational Designer or Engineer will tell you this. The management of the dialogue is where the magic happens.

Dialogue with a Conversational AI system must feel natural and flexible enough for consumers to change their mind and “jump between” multiple streams of thought, just like they would if they were speaking with a bank teller or call-center agent. It’s what separates a great conversational experience from a clunky chatbot that can’t keep context about what was previously discussed.

The video below is a great example of multi-step, multi-initiative dialogue. It showcases a user who initiates a payment, then changes her stream of thought by checking her balance to ensure sufficient funds before sending, then jumps back into the payment flow exactly where she left off, then begins to changes her mind about the specifics of the payment, and then receives a one-time security code on a secure device to complete the payment transaction.

Watch this video: 

 

Designing good conversational experiences is both an art and a science. They must allow a user to easily alternate between streams of thought without the Conversational AI system losing the context of what the user is trying to complete. The experience must be convenient, simple, and secure.

Designing good conversational experiences is both an art and a science. The experience must be convenient, simple, and secure. #AI #chatbot Click To Tweet

Over time, good conversational design allows you to collect more qualitative data about a user and gives you the inputs you’ll need to craft even more complicated conversational engagements that are focused on advice and guidance.

Start integrating Conversational AI into your digital strategy to engage consumers, streamline communication, and improve operational efficiency. Speak with one of our Conversational AI consultants and get your questions answered. We will work with you to uncover how Conversational AI technology can be used in your business today.

If you would like to learn more, please click here to schedule a time to speak with a member of our team.eBook Ease Into Voice Banking