Masterclass suggests a growing interest in AI technology for mortgage brokersElaine Armstrong
This month saw Syndeo deliver its first online AI and messaging focused masterclass in partnership with Mortgage Solutions, the UK organisation known for bringing essential market intelligence to mortgage intermediaries. There was a high level of interest and engagement from attendees on the day with poll results revealing that 66% of participants are considering implementing an AI solution within 12 months. 7% are currently implementing and 2% already have a solution in place.
During the 45-minute session Mortgage Solutions’ Group Editor, Victoria Hartley chatted with panelists, MD of The Mortgage Shop, Siobhan McAleer and Syndeo CEO, Oliver Lennon to understand the value of AI-driven chat and messaging technology for a mortgage advice business.
The two speakers complemented each other perfectly as Siobhan commented on the impact the technology makes to the broker firm from a customer perspective, drawing on her own experiences as a user. Oliver on the other hand was able to provide excellent insight based on his knowledge and experience of implementing AI-powered technology solutions along with his 20-year background working within the communications and tech industries.
Victoria kicked off the session and set the scene aptly with an interesting statistic from Pypestream stating that:
“78% of emails are never opened or responded to, adding that this makes life extremely hard for brokers trying to contact, communicate with and educate their customers.”
In contrast, Victoria then stated that:
“90% of messages sent through a messaging app (think WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger etc) are opened and responded to in the first 3 minutes of sending, with a 99% response rate after that.”
Indicating that business to consumer communication has changed a lot in the last few years Oliver later added that:
“5 years ago, 75% of UK smart phone users made at least 1 voice call a week, today voice calls are not in the top 20 ways people use their smart phones. The number 1 usage today for smart phones is messaging apps.”
Oliver went on to explain to the audience how Conversational AI works and where brokers should start if they want to harness it. He said:
“The important thing to remember is, chatbots alone do not equate to AI and without giving significant thought to the end-to-end process about how a customer engages with your organisation you have the potential of feeding into the world of ‘chatbot hell’.”
After outlining the 3 key concepts that brokers need to consider – Personalise, Automate and Connect, Oliver was asked about how Conversational AI technology is likely to evolve over the next 5-10 years.
According to Oliver it is going to continue to evolve and change. It will not replace human or physical interaction despite what some in the Sci-Fi world might have people believe. He referred to the term ‘phygital’ i.e., blending both the physical and digital experience and advises all businesses to think about how they blend this technology with their physical presence. Oliver also talked about greater use of smart phone technology to incorporate tools like biometrics (thumb print, voice facial) to help automate the identification process. He flagged the significant drive from messaging platforms to deliver many business products and services through their platform e.g., WeChat in China is already leading the way.
According to Siobhan The Mortgage Shop brand has grown by 40% over a three-year period and she attributes this growth to the company’s focus on technology. She discussed how they have benefitted as a business from implementing intelligent chat technology stating that it offers an “extra layer of engagement” and supports building “virtual rapport” which is extremely valuable, adding that adoption was particularly important for them as the pandemic forced everyone to operate in a virtual world.
“I’m not sure anybody really has a choice about investing in technology and the virtual world if they want to stay alive,” said Siobhan.
If you did not have the opportunity to attend the live masterclass a recording is available. Click on the link below to view the recording.
For more information on the Syndeo Intelligent Chatbot for mortgage intermediaries – View brochure.