Mobile tech can push AI engagement


Yet AI must learn from human behaviours and habits to drive engagement

For artificial intelligence (AI) to use the intelligent and scalable engagement that many predict to stem from the technology, it must be underpinned by an understanding of the habits and behaviours of humans, which drive engagement in the first instance. This is according to Jamie Woolnough, head of user-experience at mobile app development firm DOGFI.SH Mobile.

AI is integral to the future of customer experience and is increasingly becoming the primary focus for many of the biggest technology companies on the planet. Recently, Microsoft outlined its vision for AI at an event in London by announcing that it is to put people at the centre of its AI strategy, which is focused on solving some of society’s most fundamental challenges. Additionally, Google has also launched a new initiative designed to improve how users work with AI and reinforces the firm’s continuing focus on AI development, while moving away from mobile.

Woolnough welcomed these moves, but warned that for AI to add value and break new ground within the customer experience it must be prepared to learn from legacy processes, which have often hampered engagement. “There is no denying the scope of possibility within AI and if investment continues at the current level then the rate of accomplishment for projects will undoubtedly flourish. But for firms to gleam true success, the fate of many will rest in their ability to understand the habits and behaviours that drive engagement. From this, emotion and personality can then be injected into the AI to then make it relatable to the consumer, and as a result improve the customer experience.”

By way of an example, Woolnough, talked about the challenges seen within mobile app design when it comes to user engagement and stresses that there are lessons to be learnt when employing the same principles to AI design. “Many tech firms are moving away from a mobile-first strategy and are now prioritising AI, but for this to be effective firms must be prepared to avoid legacy trappings which often hold back user engagement; something enterprise firms are particularly susceptible to when it comes to mobile app design,” he said.

Woolnough continued: “In practice, many organisations see the key to app engagement in speed and ease of use. While this is in part true, one fundamental lesson often ignored is the need for the right mix of utility and reward. Understanding and leveraging habit-forming technology is critical to this. The principles of the technology are built on understanding the triggers, actions, rewards and the investment an individual makes in an application, and from this it allows us to then identify the hooks that keep people coming back again and again. For businesses, it allows you to then build more intuitive platforms that can drive greater performance and engagement amongst users.

“Critically, these principles are going to be integral when supporting and designing new emerging technologies. In the case of AI, many see this as the future first point of contact for organisations and therefore ensuring a rewarding customer experience is integral. Speed and efficiency of the service is one element, but also the ability to inject emotion will be key. Understanding and adapting language accordingly, as well as accessing richer forms of media, will allow for a better experience and provide a better connection between user and AI. From this an organisation can then gain a better understanding of its customer base and ultimately improve engagement.”


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