The business transforming applications for Intelligent Virtual Agents (IVA’s) continue to evolve.
However the next generation of applications of IVA technology is emerging rapidly, that is embedding IVA’s in websites and mobile apps to provide guided, cocierge digital experiences.
Digital experiences are becoming infinitely more complex as digital solutions are applied to more complex problems in financial services, media, healthcare and other industries.
Exploding customer data volumes provide more information on which to base decisions and customers demand more assistance in product selection, configuration, usage and management across all industries.
This digital complexity is overwhelming customers on web and mobile devices and overwhelming corporate digital developers as they struggle to build more targeted personal experiences within current budget constraints..
There has to be a better way.. The answer is IVA driven personalized concierge experiences at digital cost.
The best description i have heard in the past few months of this trend is providing “Turbotax for web and mobile experiences..
For those readers who do not experience the wonderfully complex USA income tax system we have to complete an annual income tax return. While the majority of tax payers easily complete an easy 2-3 page document anyone with a relatively successful financial life completes a much more complex process, my personal return averages 60 pages.
A vast army of tax filing professionals and accountants help with this process. however companies like Intuit (producer of TurboTax and personal financial management software Quicken) provide software to automate the tax preparation process. Turbotax,has evolved into a truly guided experience, making suggestions as you go along, providing videos to show what to do and discussing different options to manage your taxes including things you haven’t thought about.
If you use personal finanncial managemnt system (like Intuit’s Quicken) then you dont even have to type in your data to the tax software, just import, answer some carefully guided questions, press a button to electronically file and wait for your tax refund to appear in your bank account.
Many accountants are already offering discounts for taxpayers who provide their data within a leading personal financial management application and the most forward thinking are offering steep discounts for those who do their own tax return and provide the results. These accountants then use their experience to get a better result and gainshare the upside (for example keeping 30% of whatever she gets as a refund that exceeds my return)..
We will see the same experiences and preferential financial models applied to complex experiences like insurance product selection and claims, financial planning, investment product selection and trading, healthcare scenarios and even retail and travel experiences. Data bout us will guide the experiences, combined with interpreting our answers to questions today and in the past and the journeys that other consumers like us have taken, including our immediate social media community.
Happier customers, higher operating margins and higher sales will be the result.
This doesn’t just affect the 114m USA based 18-44 year olds (from US Census Data) who are leading the digital revolution but also the 83m USA 55+ olds (us old folks) who are adopting digital solutions rapidly as their disposable income increases with kids leaving home. These two categories number over 1b people when globalized.
The financial, healthcare, travel and retail professionals who support us will increasingly become “digital team captain” or “digital quarterback” with their customers using these new guided experiences and then coming to the professional for additional advice and input. And If they aren’t top performers providing clear value they will get replaced.
Your customers are asking the following questions and so should you:
- Do I really get worse results picking my own investments rather than my advisor?
- We just had our first child, how should our home, life, health and disability insurance change?
- I get 10 minutes with my doctor when i can get an appointment, wouldn’t it be better if i did a detailed question and answer session at home before talking to the doctor?
- How do i find the program I will really like on my 500 tv channels and 100,000 internet content locations?
- How do i get my phone to do what I want?
- How do I configure all these gadgets in my car?
- How do i find the right professional to help me?
- What shoes match my favourite business suit?
And “the internet of things” is going to take our digital lives and make it more complex than we have ever seen before. As consumers we need help .. guidance . .assistance .. IVA’s to the rescue.