By Vinit Kapahi

Imagine calling your financial service provider, and instead of being put on hold for what seems like eternity, a customer service agent extends a personalized greeting and has your past financial history, preferences and requirements at their fingertips. No more navigating through an array of options, no more getting transferred from one agent to another, and no more repeating yourself over and over again. This is not a dream, but a reality that is made possible by the latest advancements in artificial intelligence and machine learning.

Thanks to these cutting-edge technologies, financial service providers can now leverage your transaction data, communication history, and other relevant information to provide a personalized and seamless customer service experience. From identifying and resolving issues to recommending suitable products and services, these intelligent systems can do it all with remarkable accuracy and speed.

Personalized Communication

Financial institutions can use AI to analyze customers’ transaction history, spending patterns and credit scores to provide personalized financial advice, alerts and recommendations. If a customer frequently dines out, digital technologies can recommend credit cards with dining rewards, or if a customer has an upcoming bill payment, the bank can send a reminder message.

Moreover, insurance companies can use AI to analyze customers’ past claims and identify potential risks, providing tailored insurance plans that match their unique requirements. If a customer lives in an area with frequent floods, the insurance company can recommend a comprehensive flood insurance plan.

Nevertheless, if a customer expresses frustration or dissatisfaction during a call, AI can alert the customer service agent to take corrective action and also analyze the tone and sentiment of recorded calls with customers and help in improving the quality of customer service.

Boosting Sales through Cross-Selling, Up-Selling and Re-Selling

What is exciting about AI is its ability to personalize recommendations based on a customer’s past behaviour, preferences and investment patterns. This not only increases the likelihood of a successful sale, but also makes the customer feel valued and understood.

For example, if a customer has purchased a life insurance policy, AI can offer additional coverage options such as critical illness cover or disability insurance, thus providing a comprehensive coverage plan for the customer’s specific needs.

Additionally, suppose a customer’s existing life insurance policy is about to expire, or they have let it lapse due to non-payment of premiums. AI can re-engage with the customer, remind them of their policy status, and offer renewal options. It can also recommend other policies that may better suit the customer’s current needs and budget.

Enhanced Customer Service

AI acts as a personal concierge at your fingertips, available 24/7 to handle basic queries quickly and efficiently. With AI-powered chatbots, that is exactly what customers get. These chatbots can handle routine queries such as “How to make a claim?” or “What is the underwriting process?” In a matter of seconds, freeing up human customer service agents to focus on more complex issues.

Moreover, AI-powered chatbots can prioritize queries based on their complexity and urgency, ensuring that customers receive prompt and appropriate attention. Let us say, a customer has a billing issue that needs immediate attention, the chatbot can quickly escalate the issue to a human agent for resolution. This approach ensures a consistent level of service, irrespective of the time of day, leading to higher customer satisfaction and loyalty.

Not only this, digital technologies can also identify trends and areas for improvement by analyzing customer feedback. For instance, if several customers have complained about a specific issue, AI can alert the company to address the problem proactively. This helps to build trust with customers and improves their engagement with the company.

The BFSI industry has realized the importance of putting customers at the center of their digital transformation journey. Enhanced customer engagement, in turn, leads to higher customer satisfaction, loyalty and lifetime value. In the highly competitive industry, faster and more effective customer service can make all the difference.

The author is Head of Marketing, Aviva India

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