Using Conversational AI in Marketing

Beerud Sheth, the Co-founder and CEO of Gupshup, explains how conversational AI can be used in empowering business-to-customer (B2C) marketing.

Artificial intelligence (AI) has evolved, and its application is rapidly growing. One aspect of this technology is conversational AI, with promising benefits and uses in marketing. Gupshup, a conversational messaging services company owned and operated by Webaroo Inc., with primary operations in the United Kingdom, the United States, and India, provides a robust conversational engagement platform that aims to empower business-to-customer (B2C) companies, allowing them to provide more meaningful buyer experience and excellent customer service.

Beerud Sheth, the CEO and Co-founder of Gupshup, shared his insights on how conversational AI can be used in empowering business-to-customer (B2C) marketing in this interview with MartechAsia.

What is conversational AI? How does it work?

Conversational AI pertains to the technology that enables computers to chat with people using natural language – essentially simulating a human conversation. Using conversational AI, computers can understand and process natural language inputs and respond to them in an intuitive, natural, and human-like way. Brands typically use a conversational AI platform to engage with customers in real-time on common messaging, video, and voice channels via chatbots. Consumers can ask questions, make a purchase, or get service and support using WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, and other social channels – and it feels more like a human conversation than a business transaction. 

Beerud Sheth, Co-founder and CEO, Gupshup

What are the benefits of conversational AI in marketing?

Marketers use conversational AI to interact one-on-one with consumers at scale via video, voice, and text. AI-enabled bots can learn from customer interactions, collect feedback, map out the likes and dislikes of a user – and use contextual clues like these to deliver a personalized brand experience. Businesses are using conversational AI to build strong, trusted, personalized relationships with a large audience, delivering millions of brand interactions each month. For consumers, this results in more tailored products and services, as well as instant brand engagement and support 24x7x365.

How does conversational AI help marketers promote brands in the post-pandemic era in APAC?

Conversational AI enables marketers to promote brands in a much better way than traditional methods. With this new technology, brands can talk with customers rather than talking to them; build a personalized and trusted relationship rather than broadcasting to them. For consumers, it feels like texting a friend, and the information delivered to the customer is more personal and contextual. For businesses, this translates into strong brand affinity, more repeat purchases, and increased profitability.

What makes your tech solution different from others?

Our proven, robust conversational engagement platform empowers brands to create richer, more intuitive conversational experiences across the complete customer lifecycle – spanning marketing, commerce, and support workflows. Using AI, we have developed some of the most advanced conversational tools and brand marketing solutions, which several global businesses are using to engage with consumers one-on-one, at scale, and deliver personalized interactions that are both real and human.

Global brands use our conversational AI platform combined with other tools for eCommerce (ex: Shopify), CRM (ex: Salesforce, Hubspot), and customer support (ex: Zendesk). We also enable seamless integration with ready-made connectors for 500+ third-party tools, making it easier for businesses to deliver an end-to-end experience to their consumers. 

We continue to invest in horizontal as well as industry/vertical-specific product innovation across cPaaS, cCaaS, CX, and Conversational AI, through both organic and inorganic means.

What are the top trends in consumer behaviour nowadays?

Consumers value empathy, transparency, and personalization now more than ever. They want seamless and customized experiences at every touchpoint and in every stage of their engagement with brands. Consumers are greatly willing to pay more for a great experience. So, from an engagement standpoint, speed and convenience have become prerequisites for business-to-consumer communication. Therefore, for brands, providing customers access to information and support anytime, anywhere, on any channel is critical.

Why are more brands turning to Gupshup to improve customer experience and trust?

Gupshup is a global leader in conversational engagement. We are focused on emerging markets – predominantly the mobile-first countries – where businesses and consumers are leapfrogging to conversational experiences rather than using the web, email, and traditional apps. More than 44,000 customers across 40+ countries rely on our AI-powered conversational engagement platform to connect better, faster, and in real-time with their customers and clients. We power over 7 billion messages per month, making it easier for consumers to chat with a business on-demand, across any channel, in a simple and efficient way. Brands understand the value we generate and the unparalleled reach we help drive over 30+ channels. That’s why leading global brands trust us to help craft personalized experience journeys for hundreds of thousands of customers.

What are Gupshup’s product growth and market expansion strategy for the next 12 to 24 months?

Gupshup is building a comprehensive suite of products to help businesses better engage with their customers. This includes the base layer of the product stack that provides connectivity across voice and text across 30+ messaging channels, the middle layer of the stack that provides tools to build conversational experiences and chatbots, and the top layer that is specialized to industry verticals. We continue to invest in product innovation to build increasingly rich and powerful tools.

We have expanded our sales and marketing teams to cover more than 40 countries. We want to offer our solutions to a global customer base and continue to grow our teams accordingly.

Looking ahead, I am super excited about the role we can play in shaping the future of business-to-consumer conversational engagement, commerce, and support globally.

What are Gupshup’s key focus markets and business areas in APAC?

Apart from India, we see tremendous business potential in South and Southeast Asia. Bangladesh, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Thailand, and Singapore are some of our key growth markets in the region. We are working with many businesses here to help them design new and personalized conversational experience journeys for their consumers. For example, a leading telco in Malaysia is using our platform to deliver a consistently superior experience to their customers.

Conversational AI allows marketers to interact better, understand, and provide more personalized experiences to customers across all stages of their buying journey. Gupshup provides a conversational AI engagement platform for every B2B business to help realize their sales and marketing goals, driving their revenues.