In start-up visit: Indigo AI

In a courtyard hidden between the busy streets of Milan, a group of friends is working on a revolutionary idea. Truly speaking, it has now become more than just an idea. Indigo AI, a two-year old company who started off by revolutionizing the way of doing grocery shopping, is currently working as a B2B in collaboration with different firms, from the banking and the insurance sector to companies in the publishing and pharmaceutical industries.

To briefly explain what Indigo provides, imagine yourself as a customer who has inquiries regarding a specific service or a product. You do not have time to call a call center employee nor to navigate through a website’s hodgepodge of information. This is where Indigo comes into play: with their services, the only thing to do is to type your questions in a real-time chat, where you will get an immediate reply. This chat is a little unusual because you are the only human involved: on the other side of the conversation answers are generated by a chatbot.

According to Indigo AI, a chatbot is “a business account inside a messaging app”. Basically, it is a virtual assistant, working 24/7, capable of simulating a conversation with a person, with no people taking part in its functioning. For it to do more than simply answering questions, it has been connected to Artificial Intelligence (AI). AI is the technology that allows the bot to learn from the interactions it has with the end users (Machine Learning Approach).

Furthermore, the answers are given on the basis of data made available by the company. The bot is not able to create original solutions. What is more, the single response can be tailored to the customer’s preferences. If the software is not able to give an answer due to lack of knowledge, it will be updated extending its source of information. Indigo does not sell the bot, it develops platforms of Artificial Intelligence with some integration requested by the firms that have different purposes.

Gianluca Maruzzella, co-founder and CEO of Indigo AI, showed us the main benefits of this win-win tool. It makes customer care more efficient thanks to immediate response time and a higher quality of answers. A key factor is creating customer engagement, by detecting the most frequent inquiries closely related to people’s preferences. This huge amount of data is analyzed in order to integrate the value proposition. Additionally, the whole experience can be tailored to the customer’s needs and the passed interactions. Another pro is the scalability of the investment: with an initial outflow the company is able to manage a potentially infinite number of conversations.

However, the reason why its implementation is not automatic for every firm is the lack of knowledge in the field of Artificial Intelligence, and it is no secret that what is unknown is also frowned upon. Many CEOs do not consider a chatbot worth the investment and the employees are often concerned about being replaced. For this reason, the Indigo team relies on top managers’ education and a stack of successful outcomes.

In conclusion, to incorporate an AI system a company needs to change its mindset: implementing it not because it is trendy, but due to the fact that open-mindedness and risk-taking are key factors to foster continuous innovation.

Bianca Ambrosini

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