Today, many customers are better informed than the salespeople they engage with, largely due to the substantial amount of research they do beforehand. This well-documented phenomenon – of information asymmetry swinging from the salesperson to the customer in recent times – is manifesting itself across countless industries, and is being compounded by another trend called ‘mass personalisation’. Better informed and educated, customers are increasingly dictating what they want and demanding a more personalised service when they buy.
Where will it all lead? Enter artificial intelligence. Although much has been written about the potential loss of jobs to artificial intelligence software and robots, a far more interesting and immediate application of articifial intelligence revolves around its ability to make certain jobs more productive – in particular, within sales and marketing departments. In fact, the ability of artificial intelligence to quickly shift through very large amounts of data and convert generic information into specific knowledge, is fundamentally changing the face of sales and marketing departments in many industries.
Through the use of artificial intelligence the customer data can be automatically captured, automatically analysed, and automatically delivered to a salesperson in the form of actionable insights, such as “visit this customer”, “deliver these messages and insights”, and “offer this mix of products at this price”. By automatically providing such insights to in-field salespeople and telesales operators, productivity and yield increase because they begin targeting better opportunities, with the correct mix of products, at the optimal price point, with the customer in turn receiving a higher-quality engagement and personalised service. As one example, Australia’s own Complexica has recently launched an artificial intelligence-based software product called ‘Larry, the Digital Analyst’, which fetches data from the internet and overlays it with existing customer data to build granular ‘customer profiles’.
To read the full article, please visit: www.mpamagazine.com.au/sections/business-strategy/when-artificial-intelligence-meets-sales-227767.aspx