Person using a chatbot on a mobile phone. A chatbot is basically an intelligent digital agent that can help customers resolve basic, and perhaps some not-so-basic, issues regarding products and services. (Photo: tippapatt/Adobe Stock)

The use of chatbots is growing exponentially across the economic landscape, particularly in industries like insurance where the customer experience is tied directly to the bottom line. In fact, since 2019, the use of chatbots as a brand communications channel has nearly doubled, so two-thirds of global consumers have encountered at least one in the past year.

But not all insurance companies are seeing the same return from chatbot technology. Unlike previous advancements in customer relations, chatbots are not a plug-and-play or set-and-forget type of platform. Rather, they must be targeted at specific needs within the customer-facing application suite, then carefully honed over time to account for changing needs and expectations from an increasingly diverse consumer base. If done wrong, chatbots can lead to frustration and downright hostility toward the firm, which not only leads to customer erosion but tarnishes brands on social media and in word-of-mouth circles in ways that can seriously inhibit future performance.

 

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