Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology is not only here to stay but is rapidly changing the way we live and work.
You're probably using AI in your personal life already, maybe without even knowing it. Watching Netflix? AI technology underpins the algorithms which recommends shows you'll enjoy based on your viewing history and ratings. Shopping on Amazon? AI technology helps to suggest products to you based on your past purchase behavior.
There are many more examples of companies offering consumers great customer experiences through the use of AI. There are also examples and scenarios where B2B businesses are taking advantage of AI to do the same. In fact, statistics by DemandBase show that 80% of B2B marketing executives strongly feel that A.I. will revolutionize B2B marketing by 2020. We're highlighting a few examples so you can see how to leverage AI to enhance your business functions: sales, marketing, operations and more.
Here are 3 major ways in which B2B Businesses can leverage onto A.I technology to grow and gain a competitive edge over their competition.
1. Lead Generation for New Customers
Getting quality leads is crucial for a business. With so many companies out there, how does a business differentiate between high value and low quality leads? AI-powered data visualization models can help companies with this problem. Using big data, predictive analysis coupled with machine learning, AI can gather insights into customer behavior, make data-backed assumptions about the type of company they are, and then classify the lead quality, in a completely automated fashion.
Facebook leverages AI in their Custom Audience feature. Custom Audience allows a business to target users which have similar characteristics to their established customers. This results in higher quality leads which leads to higher return on investment.
Another example is Google Adwords, which uses AI to help businesses target their customers based on keyword searches. n its latest update, Google Adwords is extending its AI powered In-Marketing Audience feature to Search Network. This feature was previously accessible only through their Display Network and Youtube Campaign.) Now, a business can use Google's search network to reach users at the exact moment they are ready to purchase the products or services the business offers. From Google: To qualify someone as being in-market for a specific product or service, Google takes into account clicks on related ads and subsequent conversions, along with the content of the sites and pages they visit and the recency and frequency of the visits.
As an example of this in action, Google can use its AI, machine learning algorithms to understand purchase intent of users searching for "Mini Coopers with good gas mileage" and "comfortable Mini Cooper" and determine when people are ready to purchase. Then, Google makes those audiences available for a company like a car dealership to target.
2. Improving current customer experience
Acquiring a customer is important, but it's often only half the battle. Companies face an uphill battle to prevent competitors from stealing their customers. AI technologies can help a business to retain and constantly meet their customer's requirements. AI can help to understand a customer's needs and preferences, through learning from customers' usage, buying, and search history.
A survey done by Right Now found that 82% of consumers stopped doing business with a company after a negative experience. This highlights the importance for businesses to give their customers a positive experience. One way to do this is by giving quality customer support. Automated chatbots, such as Drift, or Zendesk's AI Chatbot can assist a business in this area. Chatbots are AI programs that stimulate conversations with people to help answer any questions they have. These chatbots do not require human supervision and can provide 24/7 customer support. This helps the business to address their customers questions immediately, anytime and anywhere they are. As such, customers will have more trust in the business ability to solve their problems and will help strengthen the relationship between the business and the customer.
3. Automating your back-office.
Finally, AI can help streamline your back-office operation, making it more efficient and therefore more profitable. Time which was spent on these manual process could then be focused on growth areas to generate more revenue for the business.
One company using AI to provide help to other companies is Appzen . Appzen automates the expense auditing process for enterprise companies. They provide this service using computer vision and natural language processing (NLP) to automatically capture expenses, analyzing receipts, credit card transactions and even travel bookings. It then audits these data, ensuring that it follows regulatory standards.
Another example is HyperScience. Hyperscience automates form processing and data extraction with the use of AI. For example, using advanced computer vision techniques, they are able to process, identify and extract data from hard-copy forms which would otherwise require a human to pore over and painstakingly enter.
With the rate of AI adoption increasing at a fast pace, it is inevitable that businesses will be using AI in all facets of their businesses for years to come. Businesses need to be willing to embrace this technology, and more importantly, to integrate it into their own businesses. Whether its to gather more leads, serve existing customers better, or streamline your back-office and reduce costs, there's plenty of AI-backed technologies out there that can help.