Chatbots are almost as rudimentary as they were 50 years ago – the German newspaper ZEIT ran a...
ChatbotCon above all stands for one thing: Knowledge around Chatbots. And this is exactly what the virtual conference on October 6th conveyed. Here are some of the highlights.
ChatbotCon - Theories in practice
The ChatbotCon, the conference on chatbots, opened its virtual gates on October 6. Already on Monday evening the much sought-after 800 seats of the conference were occupied and rightly so, because the new format was impressive. Whether HR, customer service, marketing, or IT - Chatbots are more in demand than ever.
The ChatbotCon responds to this need and puts wild theories to rest. Rather, the conference is about conveying relevant knowledge and providing participants with concrete, practical tips. The ChatbotCon included for six hours of compact expert knowledge, 13 exciting live streams, and an interactive workshop. The speakers are real experts - experts in theory and practice, including top-class speakers in the field of digitalization and chatbots, such as Achim Himmelreich, Sophie Hundertmark or Katrin-Cécile Ziegler. As if that wasn't enough, Adrian Zürn and Alexander Heißerer, project managers with practical experience, also came to the speaker's table and gave exciting insights into the current application scenarios of their chatbots at VfB Stuttgart (online store, e-commerce) and DATEV (bot factory, support) during the expert sessions. Thus, the conference created the long needed bridge between "what chatbots are" and the concrete use case.
In the expert sessions, the exclusive workshops, or in the interactive exchanges with the other participants, bot professionals and novice bot project managers were given useful best practices and tips for using chatbots in their work area. With all this concentrated wealth of knowledge, we would like to share some exciting highlights with you.
Highlight 1: Chatbots are like people
A common problem with chatbots is glorification of something they can't be. Several speakers clarified this misconception and emphasized a different perspective: Chatbots are not a panacea that allows direct automation and more. Rather, they have their limits, and above all, they too must learn slowly to develop their potential. Katrin-Cécile Ziegler summed it up nicely:
"A chatbot is like a new employee. They cannot know everything immediately and must be trained."
This also makes it clear that the fear of Chatbots replacing humans may not stand. Chatbots can support humans but also need the support of humans. A man-machine combination is the key to success.
Highlight 2: Chatbots bring the corner shop culture back to life
Do you still know the little store around the corner? The shop that always had everything, where the woman behind the counter was always informed about everything, and always knew exactly what you needed?
Achim Himmelreich revives this corner shop store and put forth this theory: "Chatbots are the corner shop of the future." He says:
"The corner shop culture will come back - with first-class personalized service, at discount prices and any time. But this service will be a being that is not flesh and blood, but that is controlled by AI."
On further reflection, this comparison is quite accurate, because chatbots is are always available 24/7, and they offer suitable, personal help or know where to find this help.
Highlight 3: Demand for chatbots arises in the coffee kitchen
For many people, it is still a big hurdle to get started with bots: “The added value is clear, but do I even need it?” Adrian Zürn from VfB did not even have to ask himself this question. He already recognized the need for a chatbot in his office kitchen. That's where the colleagues tell which questions they answer day in, day out, and that's where the solution is actually on the website. But it is unlikely to be found there directly. The chatbot can solve this problem and with these classic standard questions they have already defined the most important contents for their chatbot.
"You need a problem first to want a solution to it. But if you say the same thing 60 or 70 times a day, then you notice that - even as a customer. Therefore, to recognize the need and the topics, one does not always need a detailed analysis, one must go with us only to the office kitchen.
Chatbots are used everywhere, are more accepted than ever before, and everyone who asks himself the question "Do I need a bot" has already answered this question himself.
ChatbotCon - Full success for participants and organizers
Already during the ChatbotCon praise was expressed again and again. The first positive feedbacks and recommendations onTwitter and LinkedIn were shared after minutes, the event team was pleased with the first enthusiastic mails, and the opinions in the chat were unanimous: An all-around successful event.
"We have managed to hit the nerve of the time with the ChatbotCon. Chatbots are the topic of the present and, the future, and we are proud to have created a format, and above all a platform, with the ChatbotCon to bring experts, enterprises, and Bot enthusiasts together to discuss the possibilities and potentials of this technology,” said Sven Kolb, USU managing director.
We would like to thank all speakers, participants, and organizers in the background - without them this event would not have been such a success. And one thing is not out of question: the ChatbotCon 20 will not have been the first and last of its kind.
Harald Huber has been with USU since 1991. He has been involved in setting up the USU KCenter products. From 2008 to 2014, he was Product Manager of the USU KCenter business unit. From fall 2014 to the end of 2017, he and Sven Kolb formed the USU KCenter management team. Following the merger of four business units of USU, including KCenter, he has been responsible for the resulting unymira division as Managing Director since 2018. He is also a long-time author and speaker on knowledge management topics and trends in customer service, whether self-service or chatbots.