Marketing departments that do not embrace AI such as ChatGPT will find themselves at a disadvantage. But ultimately, although people can use generative AI, ChatGPT cannot run a business, says Dominic Allon
It is clear that AI, whether that’s ChatGPT, or new tools such as Google’s Bard, which are both being released step by step, is going to change the world. And especially sales and marketing. Just as the printing press, newspaper press, and email have done. But none of these tools directly impacted humanity’s ability to nurture a relationship, make better sales or business decisions, or support a friend or colleague through a challenging moment.
So, how will ChatGPT affect how businesses conduct customer relations specifically?
Technology is designed to disrupt but the more important and interesting question is, “How can we use this tool interpersonally, socially, and at work?” And what will its second-order effects be, beyond the application to coding, content creation, and copywriting?
I like to think of ChatGPT as a level playing field that provides everyone with a baseline of intelligence, efficiency and language modelling skills. The idea that AI will replace us is outdated, in fact, ChatGPT has the potential to provide the needed stability that allows real innovation to flourish faster. But how?
Will ChatGPT replace workers?
There is a mainstream concern around AI tools such as ChatGPT replacing workers. Yet, recent advancements such as mobile and cloud have shown us we can harness these powers without replacing workers at scale. Society evolves and finds new opportunities. ChatGPT has the potential to carry out base-level, repetitive tasks, freeing up workers to focus on more complex and creative tasks. Generative AI such as ChatGPT will actually force companies to focus on quality, meaning that more budget will be invested into individuals who can produce truly original content and ideas, which is especially important in sales and marketing – leading to business success.
AI certainly assists sales and marketing teams in providing the right phrasing and insight to support customers in need, smoothing conversations. But, without the human element and personal touch, solely relying on ChatGPT when it comes to sales and marketing can really weaken the customer connection instead of strengthening it. ChatGPT lacks the life experience of real humans and a comprehensive understanding of the nuances of society which are often required to produce truly empathetic connections.
However, ChatGPT is the opening act in a grand AI performance. it’s about the magic of new technology augmenting our capability. For example, ChatGPT has many applications which will allow all team members to improve their working processes. AI tools can help generate instructional content quickly, improving customer support or training resources. AI and automation are already being used in top customer relationship management (CRM) software with AI-powered sales assistant features, providing users with useful tips on improving performance. As technology evolves, we’ll also see opportunities for AI to improve the assessment of customer sentiment, and flag any early risks or attrition indicators, helping to improve customer service.
This is only the start for mainstream AI. Think about it. ChatGPT technology informed with specific data sets, such as the personalised data held on SaaS platforms, will have the power to unlock conversational direction like never before. Utilising the personalised information within a platform could tell a knowledge worker where best to spend their time to close X deal or achieve Y goal – all based on corporate data. We’re essentially on the threshold of “Siri, tell me how best to work today” – which is something that ChatGPT has the power to unlock.
Choosing the right software
At this point, ChatGPT should be ubiquitous. Employees who aren’t integrating ChatGPT into their day-to-day risk being at a disadvantage. It’s the equivalent of not cashing in a free cheque. We’ve long seen performance optimised through technologies such as machine learning-led CRMs, and ChatGPT is no different. Using this technology to optimise your working style is working smart. Focus your time on the areas where you will make demonstrable value.
These tools promise to revolutionise the time it takes to move from nothing to something. Companies that take a full AI-centric approach now will almost certainly prevail in the future. This means that choosing the best software and integrating AI is crucial. Conversational AI will become ever more intuitive and allow for more natural conversations. Imagine asking an intelligent revenue management platform “what is the best way to improve my revenue?” or “how can I get paid faster?” and actually receiving well-informed actions that can be implemented automatically. And we’ll continue to see improvements in conversational chat automation, increasing the relevance of an already important aspect of customer engagement and service.
Unlocking the potential of ChatGPT
Think of these AI tools as a personal assistant, which, when used correctly, can allow skilled people to bring more of their empathy and insight into the tasks that matter the most. Leveraging AI such as ChatGPT to improve sales and marketing will be crucial for businesses to succeed in the next decade. But it is also important to note that ChatGPT should not be solely relied on but used as a tool to enhance and implement already existing creative marketing and sales strategies. People can use AI, but AI cannot run a business.
Dominic Allon is CEO of Pipedrive
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