7 new AI case studies from 7 top brands

7 new AI case studies from 7 top brands 2433 1369 Kane Simms

The Cognigy Experience Summit recently concluded, and I was honoured to be there as a guest speaker. It was a gathering of Cognigy customers, partners, thought leaders and innovators in Dusseldorf, to explore the frontiers of AI in enhancing customer experiences. Here, I’ll share the success stories of the brands that presented, showing the transformative impact of AI across various sectors (and how the Germans really know their sh*t when it comes to AI adoption).

Keynote: The AI Revolution by Philipp Heltewig

Philipp Heltewig’s opening keynote addressed the seismic shifts AI is introducing, notably through ChatGPT’s influence on search behaviours and McKinsey’s projection of AI contributing $4.4 trillion annually to the gobal economy.

Phil highlighted the rapid adoption of AI in sales, marketing, and customer operations, reflecting on Cognigy’s swift integration of generative AI into their platform early last year and the progress made since then.

The introduction of Knowledge AI and Gen AI Copilot marked significant advancements, underscoring the company’s commitment to “bring your own LLM” and foster synergistic partnerships. With a staggering 1 billion interactions processed in the last year, Cognigy sets a high bar for AI’s human-like capabilities, emphasising voice quality, understanding, and non-verbal communication as critical for future developments.

Lufthansa: Scaling AI Amidst Challenges

Lufthansa’s Nick Allgaier and Ivonne Engemann shared insights on operating AI at immense scale, especially during an airline strike that tested their AI assistant’s limits. Ironically, there was a strike during the conference, which added further validation to the business case for AI. 10,000 concurrent conversations were had pretty much at the same time as Nick and Ivonne gave their keynote!

With 10 million conversations and 120,000 bookings in 2023, their AI investments have focused on routing customers efficiently, integrating payments, and enhancing multilingual support. Their approach to conversational AI scalability, emphasising volume, solution rate, and customer satisfaction, shows a nuanced understanding of technology’s role in improving customer experiences.

This is one area of difference between what’s happening in Germany vs the UK. In the UK, everyone wants to automate the sh*t out of everything. In Germany, they’re using AI to route customers to the already well-effective self-service journeys first, then automating what’s left. This is something I’ve wrote about before but perhaps needs some deeper explaining.

Allianz: Navigating New Frontiers with AI

Allianz’s Benno Schindler and Rita Stark presented their journey towards creating customer-centric AI solutions, guided by principles of simplicity (few, intuitive products, one look and feel, trouble free process), digital by default (enhanced by data analytics, metrics driven, VoC and NPS), scalability (global reusability, local customisation)

With over 122 million customers and nearly 50 team members dedicated to conversational AI, Allianz has managed to engage in over 17 million conversations in 2023, with 60+ bots in 16 countries. This places the importance of technical excellence and customer satisfaction up there! Their vision for agent assist and end-to-end automation showcases a forward-looking approach to leveraging AI, too.

Toyota: Towards a Connected Future

Peter-Pascal Meik’s presentation from inside a Toyota vehicle (!) offered a glimpse into the integration of AI within automotive services. It highlighted the challenges of data management and the importance of IT support. Meik stressed about how continuous improvement and the development of internal AI solutions like ToyoGPT, help Toyota stay one step ahead.

Toyota’s journey reflects a commitment to transforming IT from a cost to a profit centre, underlining the broader applicability of AI in enhancing operational efficiency.

Virgin Pulse: Elevating Health Engagement with AI

Virgin Pulse’s Antonio Dujmovic and Ivana Suljetovic narrated their transition to a more effective AI-driven platform, achieving significant improvements in containment rates and customer satisfaction.

Their process-oriented approach to integrating conversational AI, leveraging LLMs for content generation, and custom plugin development for seamless service delivery exemplifies the strategic application of AI in health services. This recent LLM-based chatbot saw their containment rate jump from just 3% to over 40%, with CSAT remaining the same.

Schwarz Group: AI at the Heart of Retail Innovation

Representatives from the Schwarz Group, Christian Wuttke and Malte Turck, illustrated the innovative use of AI in retail, whilst showcasing a Lidl trolley from on stage. Their use cases are refreshing and are certainly pushing the boundaries.

Of course, they’re doing what you’d expect from a customer service perspective, things like ingesting service manuals for its Parkside power tools brand and surfacing this through a chatbot, as well as going live with agent assist in Spain and the UK soon. However, but there’s far more value the team are exploring.

From production line assistance to trouble shoot machinery faults, to in-store voice assistants to help staff troubleshoot, check stock and find products. They’ve even built a custom made ear piece for in-store workers to access the voice assistant.

Their multifaceted approach showcases the potential of AI to revolutionise the retail experience, emphasising the importance of feedback and continuous adaptation.

Adidas: Navigating the Digital Shift with AI

Adidas’s journey, shared by Stijn Bannler, highlights the brand’s pivot during the pandemic towards a more engaging and locally nuanced AI chatbot experience. Initially faced with resistance and a drop in NPS, Adidas reevaluated their strategy to incorporate a more inclusive and culturally sensitive approach.

The concept of “Glocalization” was adopted. The whole idea of ‘think glocal, act loca’. This emphasised the need for local domain expertise in global markets. By fostering collaboration between local experts and product teams, Adidas managed to sustain high engagement levels, handling 7,500 conversations daily across the Americas. Their story is a testament to the power of localising digital experiences in maintaining global brand consistency and customer satisfaction.

Ergo: The Robotics and AI Innovation Journey

Harbing Ma from Ergo shared their innovative journey in leveraging robotics and AI, starting from addressing the inefficiencies of legacy systems with RPA technology. Despite the initial novelty of using Alexa for purchasing insurance policies, Ergo found its true potential in customer service applications, where it saw exponential engagement.

Their strategic initiative began in 2017 with the establishment of a Robotics Centre of Competence, leading to the launch of bots that significantly reduced the time required for complex processes like contract transfers. One transfer, for example, would take a human 45 minutes. Today, it takes a bot 5. That’s a saving of 40 minutes per customer request. Ergo now has more than 400 bots worldwide doing more than 10m transactions per year.

The process efficiencies achieved using RPA were realised without the AI front-end, showing that sometimes, focusing on your process can arguably be more important.

See you next year?

Overall, CXS was an immense event, with so many epic case studies shared. Cognigy has a good bunch of customers that are extracting real value from AI today, and approaching it in the right way as well. Cognigy shared some great product updates, too. Further generative AI integrations, an agent assist capability, avatar and digital human integrations, extensions and plugins that offer truly customisable conversational experiences and much more.

Shout out to Cognigy for an amazing event. And more importantly, shout out to Cognigy’s customers for some sterling work.

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