Companies Using Conversational AI: 5 Successful Examples

Conversational AI helps businesses handle a broad range of complex processes through natural conversation. From banking to ecommerce, conversational AI can speed up processes, saving valueable time and money. 

But perhaps more importantly, conversational is speeding up the pace of innovation, helping businesses reimagine their offerings and bring them to market faster.

In this article, we’ll review five real-world examples of companies using AI in 2022. We’ve hand picked case studies that use technology like NLP, NLU, and machine learning.

In case you missed it: The Complete Guide to Artificial Intelligence in 2022

Banking: HSBC Bank

HSBC is leading the digital transformation in banking. 82% of its clients now rate their experience as excellent, a metric that the bank credits to its digital processes and unified digital platform.

Just last year, HSBC Bank launched a new chatbot that uses artificial intelligence to give clients instant pricing and analytics for foreign exchange (FX) options. 

While FX options pricing and analytics were previously available through the company’s trading software, conversational AI makes them even more accurate by pulling in additional metrics and risk factors.

How it works

Named Sympricot, the chatbot uses natural language processing to gather and analyze information on market color, pricing, and liquidity. This includes sources of information that are traditionally difficult to obtain, like event weightings, relative value analytics, and volatility time-series charting.

HSBC says the system reduces operational risk and eliminates the repetitive and unnecessary manual tasks that complex trading typically requires. 

“In our view, NLP is one of the most natural ways of interaction, and having the chatbot interface allows HSBC to provide lots of added value to clients,” says Vivek Sarohia, Global Head of Alternative Execution Services at HSBC.

Education: Duolingo

Duolingo helps people learn over 38 languages online with bite-sized, gamified lessons. It is self-described as “the world’s best way to learn a language.” 

Duolingo's mission is to make language education accessible and free to everyone. With over 500 million registered users, it’s well on the way.

Conversational AI helps Duolingo to make lessons more engaging, automatically tailoring lessons to each individual learner, the way a teacher would.

How it works

Duolingo begins with a placement test to determine exactly where each user’s understanding of the language begins. The test adapts as it continues based on if the user answered the previous question correctly or not. 

In just five minutes, the app understands where the user should start the course. This helps avoid losing users with courses that are too simple for them. 

As the lessons continue, AI algorithms use deep learning to predict the probability of a user being able to recall a word in a given context. It then figures out what that user needs to keep practicing. 

In short, the algorithms analyze user data to personalize learning experiences. “The core part of our AI strategy is to get as close as possible to having a human-to-human experience,” says Duolingo AI and research head Burr Settles

Healthcare: UnitedHealth Group

UnitedHealth Group is an American multinational managed healthcare and insurance company. It is the largest insurance company in the world by net premiums. 

UHG prides itself on being the leader in its industry when it comes to using artificial intelligence, and its virtual assistant, AVA, is a prime example of that. 

How it works

AVA helps UnitedHealthcare agents provide customers with more information about their benefits and answer questions faster. It can route calls to sufficient internal resources, collect and classify patient information, and supply answers to basic questions in just seconds.

What’s most interesting, though, is how AVA can recommend available wellness programs and cost-saving measures, like virtual care for common medical issues. For example, if a customer says they have pink eye, AVA can set the patient up with a virtual visit. This saves time–and often money on copays, too. 

Like other conversational AI examples, AVA uses machine learning, natural language processing models, and data analytics to match patient descriptions of their problems with solutions based on proven, improved outcomes.

“We want to help members at significant points in their journey to improve health outcomes — and, when possible, reduce costs for the individual, their employer, and the health system more broadly,” says Nia’be Mitchell, Vice President of Member Experience and Implementation at UnitedHealthcare. 

Insurance: Humana

Humana is one of the largest insurance providers in the United States. It offers Medicare supplements, health insurance, dental insurance, vision insurance, and pharmacy coverage to more than 13 million customers across the country.

Recently, Humana announced that it would use conversational artificial intelligence to help members track their benefits and coverage, claims, provider referrals, and cost information through a rapid chat interface.

How it works

Humana’s conversational AI solution is designed to understand the logic of health plan eligibility so that it can make conversations more personalized and meaningful. It can also calculate cost estimates for medical services based on historical claims and provider data. 

“Navigating our health coverage without the right support can potentially serve as a barrier to care. An AI-enabled conversational agent that is trained to understand health plan benefits logic can play a role in helping to simplify complex or possibly confusing plan information,” said Paul Roma, general manager of IBM Watson Health, in a statement. 

“We are proud to support Humana in leading the effort to deploy conversational AI to help enhance and improve the consumer experience.”

Ecommerce: Sephora 

Our round-up of companies using conversational AI wouldn’t be complete without mentioning Sephora. The beauty brand is consistently ranked #1 on Sailthru’s Retail Personalization Index, and its investment in conversational AI helps it get there.

Sephora uses conversational AI to deliver a best-in-class retail experience to customers 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Customers can connect with beauty experts at any time to browse products, make reservations in-store, and even find the right shade of makeup. 

How it works

Sephora uses customer data to personalize and connect the customer experience across channels. It leans on AI and NLP to understand what customers are looking for, and also to learn more about them over time.

We expect that Sephora’s use of conversational AI will only improve as the company invests more in its ecommerce ecosystem. These investments will give the beauty retailer more flexibility and scalability in its ecommerce systems, according to CTO Sree Sreedhararaj.

“As an early dotcom and digital leader in retail, we are continually looking to improve the consumer experience through seamless advances in technology supporting product discovery, shopping and checkout,” said Sreedhararaj in an interview with Retail TouchPoints. 

“To do that, we need a quick, efficient and scalable platform that allows us to test, try and adapt at speed, which commercetools’ solutions provide.”