What is a Chatbot?
Chatbots are virtual customer assistants that are able to communicate with your customers in numerous unobtrusive ways such as text, phone calls, and social media. In short, they enable you to maintain contact with your customers at any time and anywhere in the world. Chatbots are possible due to two major technological advancements in Artificial Intelligence (AI): Natural Language Processing (NLP) and Machine Learning (ML). NLP allows computers to understand speech regardless of things like jargon, idioms, dialects, and accents. Because each of these variables compounds the interaction’s complexity, we leverage ML to help the computer better recognize each of these variables over time. This is why the more interactions Chatbots such as Siri, Alexa, and Cortana have, the better they become at understanding your requests. While Chatbots increase efficiency, customer service, and retention, they are not meant to replace your staff; rather, Chatbots relieve them of mundane and repetitive tasks so they can focus their efforts on more important things. Think of this as telling your kid to mow the lawn so you can focus on smoking ribs…you know, the important stuff. So tighten up that chinstrap and buckle in; things are going to go from ordinary to fascinating.
A Chatbot Revolution in Five Acts.
Big Data, Little Effort
Because Chatbots, like Auto Labs’ Sophi CX, are directly communicating with your dealership’s CRM and DMS, they know your shop’s capacity, parts inventory, and service schedule at all times. With this information, Chatbots can instantly schedule and quote service appointments, provide inventory availability and pricing, and allow your customers to pay directly from the chat or Facebook Messenger dialog. The algorithms created by our engineers enable Sophi CX to evolve and become more efficient over time just like Keith Richards from the Stones. Seriously Keith, we all know you will still crush “Gimme Shelter” when you are 95.
“I’m Sorry Dave, I’m Afraid I CAN Do That”
Unlike Kubrick’s automated nightmare HAL 2000, Chatbots are designed to streamline customer interaction and enable your customers to arrange for vehicle maintenance with as little effort and as possible. Also, we assure you that Chatbots will never leave your customers floating in the dark and cold vacuum of space (at least not for the next 1000 years). Don’t know your service writer? No problem, Chatbots do. What about your vehicle purchase history? Chatbots are all over it. In short, Chatbots crunch data in nanoseconds so they can a) connect with your customers on a personal level; b) provide your customers access to deals and promotions; and c) reduce the time and effort required to keep your customers on the road. Because they are communicating with the dealer’s system(s), they know the customer’s name, vehicle, service and purchase history, birthdate, service writer, and all of the relevant specials and promotions the dealership is offering. So leave the big data management to software engineers; they should not be talking to your customers anyways…or anyone else for that matter.
Q: What Do Chatbots, 711s and Jerry Rice All Have in Common? A: They are Always Open
Calling into a “chat center” is helpful when your cable is out, but you can do better for your customers with Chatbots. Life would be easy if vehicles only broke down during business hours, but your customers need quality service around the clock. Leaving a voicemail at the dealership went of style after Regan’s second term. Today (and tonight if necessary), Chatbots allow your customers to schedule service, get quotes, look up inventory, and even complete transactions (e.g., purchasing a part, paying a service bill, etc.) during hours that would earn Waffle House’s respect. Moreover, Chatbots allow around-the-clock access on just about every communication medium known to the human race (FB Messenger, text, and chat) and stop just short of carrier pigeon. We are working on the latter, but we have some things to work out with PETA.
Save Waiting in Line for Disneyland
Space Mountain can do something you cannot: it can continue to attract customers after forcing them to wait in line for hours. Modern customer service is like being a gunfighter in the Old West: the fastest and most accurate wins. While Chatbots cannot completely eliminate wait times, they significantly reduce the number of required transfers to get your customers to the right staff member. Additionally, Chatbots record all interactions so you the human can analyze the data and identify any gaps or customer service issues. Differently stated, Chatbots enable both themselves and you to decrease the time required to assist your customers and improve the service’s quality as time progresses. People might have to wait in lines for toilet paper in Russia, but they should not have to do so at your dealership.
Know Customers, Know Satisfaction
We have said before, and it is worth noting again here, that you can let Chatbots, especially Sophie CX, handle the routine while you and your staff handle the critical. There is something to be said about getting to know your customers during face-to-face interactions when compared to cold calling them to inform them about your specials on brake pads. Customers are willing to forgo human interaction to a certain point, but eventually a human being must talk to them. These interactions form a bond with your customer that transforms them from a transnational entity into advocates for your business. Therefore, maximizing these interactions is imperative to maintaining the level of service your customers expect. And to this end, Chatbots can enable you and your staff to put your bandwidth where it is most needed: directly talking to your customers.
Want to learn more about how your dealership can leverage AI to create efficiency, reduce costs, and deliver a truly personalized customer experience?