An introduction to conversational commerce and bots

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We seem to be talking about talking an awful lot these days — and that’s no surprise, considering the advances in artificial intelligence, machine learning and natural language processing that have made interactions with technology more conversational and human. It’s leading the way to conversations about how businesses can, could, will and should be using bots to drive more personalized conversational interfaces with their customers.

Back in 2011, Gartner predicted the following:

By 2020, customers will manage 85% of their relationship with the enterprise without interacting with a human.

I already prefer to use an ATM rather than visit the bank, and I go to the self-checkout stands at the grocery store. In this context, it’s not hard to imagine how conversational bots can become an extension of a self-service interface to your brand across the platform and channel your customers choose.

Bing already has a few bots integrated directly into the search results page. In the video below, you can see how I’ve utilized the bot to quickly discover the parking situation for a nearby restaurant and to make sure it offers vegetarian dishes for my coworkers.

We are seeing the rise of artificially intelligent agents providing answers and communicating with us and each other, and it’s time for marketers to take a look at how they can incorporate these technologies into their own digital marketing strategy.

[Read the full article on MarTech Today.]

Some opinions expressed in this article may be those of a guest author and not necessarily Marketing Land. Staff authors are listed here.

About The Author

​Christi Olson is a Search Evangelist at Microsoft in Seattle, Washington. For over a decade Christi has been a student and practitioner of SEM. Prior to joining the Bing Ads team within Microsoft, Christi worked in marketing both in-house and at agencies at Point It, Expedia, Harry & David, and Microsoft (MSN, Bing, Windows). When she’s not geeking out about search and digital marketing she can be found with her husband at ACUO crossfit and running races across the PacificNW, brewing and trying to find the perfect beer, and going for lots of walks with their two schnauzers and pug.


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