The best #AI on the market is Authentic Intelligence

| May 24, 2019

Artificial Intelligence and how it might transform our economy and society is a hotly debated issue, dominating news headlines, conferences and business plans across the globe. Sales and marketing teams are no exceptions, trying to understand how AI can be effectively harnessed to sell more goods and better promote services. The potential this technology has, for those producing miles of column inches on the topic, is limitless. However, what is often overlooked, and to my mind still sits at the heart of effective sales and marketing, is the continued power of authentic, human intelligence, writes Simon Murphy.

Simon Murphy

Machines and computers can do many fantastic things, but establishing a relationship based on trust is always best done face-to-face, and in the world of sales and marketing, that can make all the difference. It is understandable why companies want to harness the power of a technology that can harvest key information on a mass scale. The logic of increased profitability through increased capacity is easily understood. However, at my company tawkr, we are strong advocates of the earliest form of data collection, speaking to people Face2Face and listening to their wants and needs. Through this approach, our Face2Face business has managed to speak to 16.8 million potential customers in the last 12 months.

I anticipate in the years ahead that many sales companies will have spent considerable sums in an effort to mimic what humans can do infinitely better. The ability to read visual cues, tapping into emotions and responding to the nuance of an individual’s needs is the lifeblood of an effective sales approach. I am yet to be convinced that Artificial Intelligence can replicate any of that to greater effect. To put it succinctly, Artificial Intelligence does not equal emotional intelligence.

Through this approach, we are able to create new customers for our clients, who would not have become customers otherwise Our Face2Face Marketing means we can go out and actively educate and acquire customers, as opposed to the online approach of waiting for them to come to you. Given the ferociously competitive marketplace of sales and customer acquisition, adopting a proactive approach is the only way. The average person is exposed to 5,000 ads per day. In this respect Face2Face offers a great way for cutting through the noise.

At their annual general meeting, Berkshire Hathaway Vice Chairman, Charlie Munger, said “I think there is more hype in that field [AI] than there is achievement”. He went on to emphasis how people want a physics like formula for selling to people, but that simply isn’t the reality of the world around us. To try and devise a sales strategy based on uniform assumptions about people simply isn’t going to reflect the diversity of your potential market.

Trying to manage and grow your customer base via digital solutions alone is fraught with complications. Of course, when it comes to customer service, a digital option proves more convenient and is often seen as the default option. But when it comes to establishing a deeper relationship, one which can generate repeat business and customer loyalty, digital’s limitations begin to show. How often have you been speaking with someone online and misunderstood their meaning? Sarcasm, jokes, tone. All these basics of social interaction are often lost in the fog of online interaction. And what industry is more social than sales?

That is why at tawkr we invest heavily in emotional intelligence over Artificial Intelligence, specialising in coaching EQ proficient BAs. As I mentioned earlier, this is an especially crowded marketplace but I believe our people focused, face-to-face approach is bucking the industry trend of complacent inbound marketing and sets us apart. In an article last year, Salesforce suggested that AI is revolutionising the industry by identifying which prospect leads offer the most potential. To me that sounds like an excuse not to make the effort with customers and convince them of your ability to provide what they want and need.

I understand the excitement around Artificial Intelligence and can certainly see the potential benefits it can offer wider society and the economy. But when it comes to replacing human interaction, why use Artificial Intelligence when you can use Authentic intelligence.

About the author

Simon Murphy is the founder and CEO of the TFO Group  – parent company of the tawkr , Acwyre and Geninc  brands. He is the driving force behind Europe’s fastest growing end to end Face2Face Marketing and Customer Acquisition solution provider.

Murphy began his career as a Brand Ambassador while travelling the world in his early 20s, recognizing early the opportunity that Face2Face selling presented. After successful expansion into the European market over the last decade, Simon now leads a network of over 1,000 Brand Ambassadors across 19 European cities.

He is the founder or lead investor of multiple online retail & e-learning businesses, websites and apps. Investment highlights include; Ireland’s fastest growing home monitoring business, HomeSecure and Modern Milkman, a newcomer in the subscription-based doorstep-delivery arena as well as innovative app-based start ups like BA.Life and Unity Street.

Simon works with opportunities predominantly across the Benelux region, France and the U.K., seeking new venture strategic partnerships. He also recently completed a Harvard Business School Diploma in Foundations of Private Equity and Venture Capital.


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