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Combining Chatbots and Voice for Omnichannel Experiences

By Liam Ryan, Sales Director

Last week Creative Virtual joined our partner Spitch as co-sponsors of The European Chatbot & Conversational AI Summit. The event was 100% virtual this year and featured two afternoons of various presentations, workshops, and panel debates. While being virtual is never quite the same as talking with someone face-to-face, it was great to see so many thought-provoking exchanges on the Discussion board and interesting questions asked by attendees during the sessions.

I teamed up with Gary Williams from Spitch to present on Day 1 of the Summit. Our session, The Omnichannel Solution: Chatbots + Voice, explored combining natural language chatbots with speech recognition capabilities to create powerful voicebot solutions. We shared some industry research from ContactBabel that showed 85% of CX professionals identified creating omnichannel/connected journeys as very or somewhat important to their strategies in the next two years (download the full report here). It’s no secret that customers want and expect an omnichannel support experience.

The tight integration of chatbots and voice creates a seamless journey as users switch between channels to help you deliver that connected experience. Gary and I shared two example voicebot use cases, one for customer support and one for employee support, that showed how the user could start a process on one channel and complete it on another in a smooth, seamless way.

For those interested in getting started with their own voicebot project, we ended our session with three important tips:

  1. Work with experienced vendors – Today’s market is crowded with new start-ups and inexperienced providers. You want to work with vendors that already have proven experience with both deploying and maintaining these solutions in your industry or sector. By partnering with experts, you immediately benefit from their experience. They can help you avoid common pitfalls, guide you on best practices, and ensure compliance with industry requirements and regulations.
  2. Select reliable technologies – This is why Creative Virtual and Spitch have partnered on voicebot solutions. We both bring years of expertise and documented results for each of our respective technologies. Be cautious about vendors that have attempted to tack on their own poorly developed chatbot or voice technologies to their main solution just so they can shout ‘Me too!’ You want technologies that are secure, can scale to current and future requirements, offer the hosting options you need, and will give you reliable results.
  3. Understand the integration options – When it comes to integrations, you need to first make sure there is a deep, seamless integration of the chatbot and speech technology to have a successful voicebot. Then consider what other integrations you are going to need to create a personalised user experience. You want a solution that can easily integrate with any existing content sources, backend systems, CRMs, other communication channels, etc. so that you can create a custom experience and connected journey.

If you’re interested in learning more about voicebots, schedule a demo to see these solutions in action and discuss possible use cases. You can also read more about the Creative Virtual and Spitch collaboration in our integration overview.

Thanks to Gary and Spitch for their event partnership and to The European Chatbot & Conversational AI Summit organisers and attendees for two days of great virtual content!

APPEX Omnichannel Takes Home Top Catalyst Honours at TM Forum Live! 2017

By Liam Ryan, Head of Sales

Enhancing the omnichannel customer experience should be a goal of every company, but we all know how challenging this can be when it comes to the reality of designing and implementing a consistent and seamless experience. That’s why at Creative Virtual we’re excited to be participating in the APPEX Omnichannel Catalyst as part of TM Forum’s Catalyst Project. And we’re proud to share that the project recently took home the ‘Outstanding Performance’ award in the Customer Centricity & Analytics stream of the Catalyst Program at TM Forum Live! 2017 in Nice, France!

First, a little about TM Forum and the Catalyst Program. TM Forum is the global industry association that drives collaboration and collective problem-solving to maximise the business success of communication and digital service providers and their ecosystem of suppliers. Catalysts are member-driven proof-of-concept projects which connect diverse organisations to develop innovative, commercially viable prototypes of new digital services and business models.

The object of the APPEX Omnichannel Catalyst has been the creation of an omnichannel solution environment for the service provider sector to encourage omnichannel adoption in order to enhance the customer experience across all channels. Creative Virtual joined the Catalyst this year as the project’s chatbot technology provider. Check out this interview with Deepanshu Motani, Enterprise Architect, Vodafone Group to understand more about the APPEX Omnichannel initiative:

 

A record-breaking number of Catalysts were showcased at TM Forum Live! this year, which was held 15-18 May at the Acropolis Convention Center in Nice. Each team provided demos of the projects on their stand for event attendees and TM Forum’s Strategy Committee who served as the judges. Visitors to the APPEX Omnichannel stand were treated to a fully immersive experience while watching the video below through the use of virtual reality technology.

TM Forum Live! 2017

 

TM Forum announced the winners of the 2017 Catalyst Awards at the end of the day on 17 May, and we were thrilled to hear APPEX Omnichannel announced as winners of the ‘Outstanding Performance in the Catalyst Program’ award! Congratulations to the entire APPEX Omnichannel team, and thanks to Huawei for inviting Creative Virtual to be a part of this exciting initiative.

Check out our TM Forum Live! 2017 photo album for more photos from the event.