How to Use Automated Conditional Logic Statements to Engage Conversations
If you want to create loyal customers, it is important to make their experience as easy and streamlined as possible. According to the Harvard Business Review, clients are more likely to become repeat customers when they feel like there’s as few obstacles as possible to resolving their issues. In this regard, it is logical to think chatbots and phone trees will go a long way towards that goal. After all, these are long-standing methods of self-service.
Truth be told that statement comes with a big “if”—specifically, “if they’re implemented correctly.” It is all too common to hear stories about chatbots that can’t recognize simple terms, phone trees which lead customers in circles, and the lost clients resulting from these failings.
Fortunately, these problems are fixable when you implement automated conditional logic statements well. Conditional logic statements are a concept in math and coding based on an “if/then” format. “If X happens, then the program does Y.” Let us take a look at how to design and use this form of automation to improve the customer experience.
Design with the User Journey in Mind
Let us begin by talking about phone trees. It is not uncommon for people to complain about these systems. In fact, if you Google “Phone Tree Definition” the entry’s example sentence is “users had to navigate an elaborate phone tree before reaching a counselor.” While phone trees are good in theory, they often result in a lot of frustration. People wait through an entire menu of options to know which button they should press, and if they space out or mishear something, then they need to listen to the entire list again.
It is much easier for users to simply state what they need and be redirected through that method. You could have an automated recording which asks something along the lines of “How can I help you today?” While getting voice detection to respond to a voice command may seem complicated, it is rather simple if implemented correctly. For example, if you often receive phone calls about shipping, you can program the bot to listen for any words or phrases which may relate to shipping. This may include “shipping,” “package,” or “tracking number,” for example. Once the system “hears” this word or phrase, it can direct users to the shipping department.
If implemented well, then these conditional logic statements can help streamline the customer service process.
Consider the Users’ Emotions
You should be careful, however, because it is difficult to create an exhaustive term list for each department. If you forget to use a common term, then it may upset your customers more than it will help. Even if you leave off a less-common term, it could lead to a lot of frustrated customers. After all, there are few things more frustrating than feeling like you are not being understood. To help mitigate this frustration, include a default action for if the program fails to detect any keywords. For instance, the computer could connect the customer to a human call representative.
If you are successful in this regard, however, you will end up with a system which leaves the users thinking, “Wow, that was really cool!” You will need to put a lot of time and effort into creating myriad if/then statements, and you will likely still need a human to answer the phone in case something goes awry.
Computational Configurations to Consider
While most of this article discusses conditional logic statements in the case of a voice-controlled phone answering system, there are a lot of other uses to consider. For example, chat bots are a lot like the aforementioned phone systems, without the added burden of responding to someone’s voice. If someone asks a common question (or a variant of a common question), the chatbot can respond with a predetermined answer. Simple chatbots are more like an interactive FAQ page, but more complex chatbots can answer a large variety of questions or redirect users to a page where they can find the answer themselves.
These principles can also apply to automated text messages or email responses, but there’s numerous other ways conditional logic statements can assist you in running a business. For example, let us say you want to streamline your hiring process. If you have certain must-have requirements (like a high school diploma, a specific skill, or a certain amount of experience), you can filter out responses based on those criteria, automatically eliminating unqualified candidates. If you are a bit more flexible, however, you can make a program which adds an additional question for those who seem underqualified, asking them to justify their apparent lack of skills or experience.
There are untold ways this technology can be helpful.
Mastering the conditional logic step takes time, but it will prove to be a turning point when it comes to conversing with your clients and building relationships with them that endure.