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Communicating with empathy leveraging AI

AI is evolving as a significant Customer Experience tech, here Yashdeep Vaishnav from Salesforce showcases how AI can help marketers in communicating with empathy
customer experience

The current crisis is provoking many conversations around content, brand voice, and frequency of messaging for marketers. –

These are the three questions front of mind when communicating with customers:

  • What are we trying to communicate?
  • How do we provide support and empathy?
  • How do we field calls from anxious customers?

In today’s climate, you have to channel your sixth sense: empathy.

You must rely on their understanding of their customers and themselves during life’s most stressful events. Values and belief systems matter more than ever – this can’t be just a marketing exercise.

Businesses are powerful platforms for social change and one of the platforms where we can best help educate, elevate, empower, and learn. Marketers need to engage through empathy. To gain empathy, we need to listen to our communities, employees, customers and partners, and remind ourselves that we’re marketing to people. That being said, a data-driven and inclusive approach will always remain important in our industry. The most powerful stories inspire and bring communities together. Understanding data makes us all better at being able to be agile with our strategy and create compelling content that reaches people through both the head and the heart.

There are tools that can help marketers achieve this level of personalization at scale. Artificial intelligence (AI) can tailor the content, timing, and frequency of messages. It delivers insights and allows marketers to be proactive in improving customer experience.   Not only are companies at all levels needing to rethink how they connect with customers in a nearly 100% digital world, marketers also need to be agile and innovative — it’s time to rethink, re-skill and throw the old marketing and sales playbooks out the window.

You can use AI to:

  • Adjust the timing and frequency of each message
  • Discover the right sentiment and language for each customer
  • Automate personalized content and imagery

1. How to increase the chances your emails are read

Send Time Optimization (STO)  is their first step in creating a total personalized customer experience. With inboxes being inundated with emails, Einstein STO raises the chances your message won’t get lost in a recipient’s inbox.

With STO, you can:

  • Improve engagement and conversion KPIs with your emails by sending at the time each customer is likely to engage
  • Beat out the competition and be at the top of the inbox when your customers are more likely to be engaged
  • Save time and automate manual filter and query processes often used to achieve send time optimization

2. How AI helps you bring the right emotion to email

AI surfaces insights to help marketers improve the customer experience. It can use data to alert the marketer about performance and suggest areas to improve. Sentiment analysis goes beyond topic detection and focuses on whether the response to the message is positive, negative, or neutral. Language insight brings emotional tone into the mix. Tone is more granular than sentiment – it includes things like love, anger, disgust, and surprise. You can decide the tones you’d like to capture through machine learning.

Tone and language insights can also drive email opens. AI can identify the tone, words, and phrases that resonate with customers at scale. Gathering these insights can help develop an overall messaging style for email content and other communications. It can also help marketers group customers based on how they respond to different sentiment and language. Einstein Sentiment Insights and Einstein Copy Insights understand how sentiment, tone, and language impact your customers.

If you are working to set up your own sentiment analysis, here’s a tip: a machine learning-based approach for sentiment analysis and language insights requires a collection of documents (sentences and words), each manually evaluated and labelled in terms of sentiment.

Training data is the most important part of developing your sentiment analysis and language insights. Brands need to embrace the valuable data specific to their industry and customer

The most valuable data you have are your customers, so understand how to capitalize on what you already know and use it for machine learning training.

3. How AI helps you tailor content and imagery at scale

AI helps you choose the right content to complete a fully personalized customer experience. Marketers can create an asset pool and use machine learning to display the right image to the right audience upon opening the email.

For example, a customer using the services of a travel aggregator website will receive and relate to imagery depending on the area he/she resides in and is looking at travelling to.

Email plays a huge role in customer experience, beginning with understanding the customers and what we should talk to them about.

One pandemic theme that is coming through clearly in successful campaigns is empathetic marketing. Maintaining and strengthening relationships now demands demonstrating genuine empathy and using what you learn to connect consumers and customers to products and services that solve problems.

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Yashdeep Vaishnav, Director, Salesforce Marketing Cloud
Yashdeep Vaishnav leads the Marketing & Commerce Cloud business for Salesforce in India.
He launched Salesforce Marketing Cloud in 2016 & continues to build successful ecosystems across Partners and Customers to drive digital transformations for some of the largest brands in India.
He is passionate about cloud computing and believes that technology has the power to expeditiously address the business and development challenges facing India.

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