Artificial intelligence and automation have quickly become the number one priority for businesses and brands around the world today. Just like with all upcoming trends and technology, if you aren’t adapting your business with it, you will quickly find yourself falling behind the competition. This is exactly what we are seeing with AI and automation right now — not just in the world of e-commerce and process of orders, but in all aspects of business and especially in the world of online lead generation and customer support.
With all of this in mind, it’s not just a question of when and how it’s also a process of finding out what solution is right for your business and brand. Sales funnels and email autoresponders have always been a great way to automated the lead generation process, while chatbots are now becoming key components to the customer management and support process. In both of these scenarios, the marketer or brand would still need to put in the outreach and marketing to get in front of the right audience, or at least lead them back to their site and sales funnel.
This is yet another area where artificial intelligence and automation is creeping its way into the mix.
This CEO is on a Mission to Improve Your Sales Process
One such company that is leading the way in this space is Growbots, which is a machine learning platform that helps provide sales teams with the right leads to kickstart their outbound sales process. Think of cold calling or emailing, but with advanced data, technology and tracking in place to improve the process even further. In addition to providing sales teams with valuable customer data and demographics before the outreach process begins, it’s also been stated to each team member a few days a month in wasted time that would otherwise need to be spent on research and data entry.
The company’s CEO and co-founder Greg Pietruszynski best explains his service in the following way: “Growbots’ AI algorithms will generate tailored contact lists for your team in minutes, run all of your outreach campaigns, optimize team/individual results, and manage their inboxes, so each person can focus entirely on talking to potential customers,”.
As mentioned earlier, with more focus on AI and automation for businesses today, it’s no surprise the company just landed $2.5 million in funding from Buran VC, Lighter Capital and a number of angel investors — bringing the company’s total funding to $4.2 million.
Where is All of this Customer Data Coming From?
When you start to play around with the idea of artificial intelligence and automation, while also integrating personal customer data into the mix, it’s important to make sure your data isn’t only accurate, but also safe. Facebook for example currently has over 2 billion users on their network, all of which are accessible and demographically targetable through their self-serve advertising… however, the individual user information is never released to the advertiser. However, at the same time, Facebook is working with other big brands around the world to share data and improve advertiser targeting and ROI.
This also leads to an interesting question of where all of this collected information comes from, and how accurate can it all be?
In the case of Growbots, they currently have a list of around 200 million potential sales targets from a number of different sources. This data is collected and analyzed through their machine learning platform that analyzes millions of websites on a daily basis, while also making sure all information is updated and accurate as possible. One of the most surprising components of this whole process is that none of the data was actually paid for — which is usually common practice among businesses and sales teams. This was noted in the TechCrunch article, where Pietruszynski stated: “We don’t purchase contact information from anywhere, as any ready to use lists are low qualify — very outdated,”.
In addition to being a source of data, Growbots also made it to the top of the list on ProductHunt for their “Email Timing Optimizer” tool, which lets users know when the best times are to send out a mailing to their lists. This is something many marketers and brands have tried to publicize before, but this time around it’s backed by actual user data. Once again, this tool was created through the use of the core AI data collection process that helped grow the company and service into what it is today.
Artificial Intelligence and Automation on All Levels
In what seems to be one of the fastest growing and most heavily funded areas of tech right now, AI and automation are going to continue to change the way organization and brands continue to do business around the world. With more automation and data in place, it will likely lead to less manual and human work in the process — while also likely increase revenue and profits.
This can already be seen in the world of customer management, as chatbots, automation, and CRMs are leading the way to a less one-on-one customer to support team approach.
As mentioned on TheNextWeb, big names like SalesForce, SAP, and Oracle have already started taking the necessary steps in changing the way they do operate by implementing AI-powered CRM suites into their businesses.
- Main providers of Customer Relationship Management (CRM) solutions have started to invest in the added value of AI. Last year, SalesForce, the leader in the CRM industry, announced Einstein, an AI assistant that, when launched, will be omnipresent across its platform. Einstein puts its AI chops to work to continuously study the flood of data SalesForces collects from sales, e-commerce activity, emails, IoT generated data and social media streams among others. The AI engine will then make suggestions across different use cases. For instance, it helps sales reps focus on the most promising leads based on engagement data analysis, or gives advice on when to trigger email campaigns according to customer response history.
- SAP, another top competitor in the field, is also joining the fray by adding AI functionalities to its S/4HANA cloud ERP. The tacked-on features will give automated insights into the business data the system collects. This includes monitoring accounts or preparing lists of top vendors for an organization based on their pricing, past performance and ability to deliver.
- Oracle also declared its cloud AI project earlier this year, called Adaptive Intelligence. The initiative involves a series of add-on applications that integrate with its cloud suite. These apps combine third-party data with real-time analytics to optimize decisions and recommendations in various domains. For example, the AI Offers app merges data from the company cloud and the Oracle Data Cloud to extract contextual insights into individual customer behaviors and provide personalized offers as visitors browse websites powered by the Commerce Cloud.
With some of the biggest organizations and brands in the world today already implementing AI in their businesses, this is only going to add more fuel and funding to the AI fire. The great news is that with all of the latest new and technology coming out, there is a perfect AI solution for every type of business out there. Whether it’s using a chatbot to improve customer support, or having a solution in place to better manage sales outreach and customer data — AI is going to lead the way.