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What to look for in a Conversational Intelligence Platform

A wide aspect ratio concept art of a bustling contact center in a modern, open concept office. The scene features a woman with pink hair sitting at a desk working with a conversational intelligence platform

There are more options for customers to get in touch with you than ever. But the sheer volume of customer inquiries makes managing and understanding those conversations across all those different channels not even difficult – it’s literally impossible. But conversational intelligence platforms provide a solution: the ability to extract meaning and insight from millions of conversations, across all those channels, and bring them right to you. But with a crowded market of available options, how do you understand which solution is right for you? And how is a conversational intelligence platform different than conversational AI

In this post, we’ll be exploring what you need to know about evaluating a conversational intelligence platform and how these tools are different from other tools like conversational AI (and the typical use cases for each). Let’s dive into what makes each unique and what you should look for in a conversational intelligence platform.


What’s the difference between conversational intelligence and conversational AI?

This distinction is important to address right away, as they have very different applications. Conversational AI primarily refers to technologies like chatbots or virtual assistants that can interact with users in a human-like manner. These tools are designed to automate responses and handle inquiries without human intervention, using pre-set rules or learning from interactions to improve over time. Conversational AI is often used as a way to help customers self-serve, and provides a way to automate frequently asked questions and predictable interactions. 

Conversational Intelligence looks at all customer interactions and extracts valuable insights from those conversations. This could be anything from basic customer sentiment and keyword frequency to more advanced intent classification and conversation scoring. Most conversational intelligence platforms use AI to derive these insights to help businesses understand how their customers feel and what they truly need. These platforms are used for many different use cases, from measuring customer experience quality to uncovering emerging customer trends and issues. They can also be used to analyze which inquiries can be easily automated using conversational AI, and which are better suited for customer service agents.


What to look for in a Conversational Intelligence Platform

Now that you understand the difference, it’s time to determine which attributes are the right ones to keep in mind. 

1. Ease of integration

While most of the top conversational intelligence tools play well with others, one of the first steps is to make sure the tools you’re evaluating actually work with the rest of your tech stack. Whether it’s your CRM system, customer service software, voice platform, or any other technology your team uses, a premade integration will make things go a lot smoother. This also ensures that insights derived from customer interactions are easily accessible across your business and can inform various functions, from customer experience to marketing to product management.


2. Customer service, sales, or general focus

Searching for “conversational intelligence platforms” brings up a long list of options that are all very different. To get the best results, look for platforms that are not only designed for customer service, but also have AI models trained on customer service conversations. This will ensure greater accuracy, more relevant features, and a faster deployment, since the system needs less training time. 


3. Depth of analysis

Every conversational intelligence platform can dissect and interpret conversations beyond basic metrics. High level insights around customer satisfaction, agent performance, and the emotional tone of conversations can be helpful. But these platforms also need to give specific reasons behind conversations in order to be useful. Understanding the context behind an order return, for example, can mean the difference between identifying a major product defect and assuming that a large number of customers just changed their minds.   Delivering this insight quickly and accurately can turn a conversational intelligence platform into an early warning system powered by your existing customer conversations. 


4. Scalability that grows with your business

Much like the integrations point above, ensuring that you select a platform that fits your business needs is essential. As your business grows, so will your conversations. Your chosen platform should be able to scale with you, handling increased loads without the drama. This means being able to maintain performance levels as interaction volumes grow, ensuring that no customer inquiry falls through the cracks.


5. Usability and intuitiveness

This is a big one that most organizations don’t realize early enough in the selection process (or sometimes a few months into deployment). The degree of complexity for these platforms can vary wildly with some being more a collection of AI capabilities you have to manipulate yourself and others more purpose-built for specific use cases. The best way to understand if a conversational intelligence platform will work for you is to consider who is going to use it. 

If your technical team or a dedicated resource to going to be the one to maintain it, run reports for other teams and be the main owner, you may be more inclined to go with less turn-key options. But if this will primarily be used by your customer service or quality assurance teams, you need something that they can easily understand without deep technical expertise. Model maintenance is another question to ask, specifically if you will need to dedicate an internal resource to keep the system going or if this happens automatically. The ideal platform will remove many of these technical hurdles, and instead focus your team on interpreting and acting on the insights provided.


6. Privacy and compliance

With great power comes great responsibility. And with certain industries, that responsibility can be greater than others. Handling customer data requires strict adherence to privacy laws and regulations for your region, industry, and your company’s own standards. Make sure whichever platform you choose prioritizes data security and complies with relevant regulations to protect both your business and your customers.


Why organizations use conversational intelligence 

Understanding your customers is not just for better service. The richness of the insights available in your customer conversations is an untapped gold mine that conversational intelligence tools can unearth for you. These actionable insights that can lead to improved customer service, enhanced product offerings, and growth opportunities that improve your competitiveness as well as your bottom line. They allow businesses to truly listen to their customers, picking up on nuances that might be missed by humans or basic conversational AI.

So, when you’re deciding on a tool to enhance your customer interactions, remember that a conversational intelligence platform provides a window into your customers’ thoughts and feelings, helping you build stronger relationships and a more responsive business. Make sure to choose a platform that aligns with your business needs and can grow with you as you expand. But also fits your desired goal and your user base. Mostly, make sure it gives you the insight you need to not only know what’s happening, but also how to fix it. After all, in the realm of customer service, staying connected in meaningful ways is what sets the great apart from the good.

Heading to CCW Las Vegas June 4th to 6th? 

Stop by booth #1201 to connect with the Loris team or reserve your time in advance before schedules fill up!