Message Wars: iMessage Vs RCS (2024 update)
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As the banking sector in Ireland and the UK continues to evolve apace, so too must the technologies and communication channels that underpin it. Artificial Intelligence (AI) is one such emerging technology that is already essential for banks looking to stay competitive and provide the best possible customer experience.
Banks are complex institutions. Customers have to navigate a wide range of digital banking products and security technologies across web, apps, voice, IVR, SMS and so forth. No wonder it gets confusing for even the most tech savvy of customers.
Confusion and frustration for customers can lead to impatience and flash points with front-line customer care and fraud teams in particular.
That’s where AI-driven or “smart” messaging can help.
“New AI tools mean that businesses can now do so much more for their customers, anticipating their needs or detecting a problem and then communicating with them in real time.”Eileen Carroll, Púca CEO
AI algorithms can detect suspicious activity on customer accounts and prevent financial losses. For example, when a suspicious transaction is detected on a customer’s account, a text message alert can be sent to the customer immediately, asking them to confirm if the transaction was made by them. If the customer confirms it was not, the bank can take action to prevent further fraud and protect the customer’s account.
This customer story from Permanent tsb showcases how SMS alerts combined with robotic decisioning can accelerate response times to fraud incidences.
SMS can be used as part of a robotic decisioning process for customer onboarding at a bank by sending text messages to customers to verify their identity, communicate OTPs (one time passwords) and gather necessary information. The bank could also use SMS to send customers reminders about missing documentation, to request additional information or updates on the status of their onboarding process.
When a caller is attempting to retrieve details from an interactive voice menu or wants to make an appointment, the system can use AI decisioning to determine if they should be given the option to receive the information by text message can be “deflected” away from the call. By proactively identifying and addressing potential problems, the bank can help customers avoid financial difficulties and maintain a positive relationship with the bank.
AI can analyze customer data such as transaction history, spending patterns, and financial goals to provide personalized recommendations for managing finances. For example, if a customer’s account balance is low, the bank can use SMS to send them a personalized message with advice on how to manage their finances better, such as budgeting tips or information about low-cost savings options.
AI can predict account balances and identify potential problems before they occur. For example, if a system is down, the AI can analyse the problem and determine which teams need to be notified. If a customer account balance is likely to fall below a certain threshold, the bank can send them an SMS warning them of the potential problem and offering solutions such as transferring funds from a savings account or setting up a payment plan.
The above are just some of the examples of how banks can respond much more rapidly to customer requests and keep them informed, by leveraging the immediacy of SMS and the power of AI.
What’s clear is that smart messaging is a winning strategy.