Intercom updates Messenger, QuestionPro nabs journey mapping platform, Soul Machines Digital Iris stays on the job, more CX news.
Intercom, an engagement operating system, has announced several updates to its Messenger product including a newly designed messenger system with messenger-first tickets. According to company officials this “next-generation” messenger is customizable and configurable to match a company’s brand experience with new designs in a variety of styles, colors, sizes and more.
The company also announced the launch of messenger-first tickets that enable businesses to funnel complex support requests through the messenger and into the Intercom platform.
“Intercom has earned the loyalty of our customers because we provide the solutions they need to increase customer retention which is a challenge facing every business,” Paul Adams, chief product officer at Intercom, said in a statement. “We believe the answer is better customer communication, which is why we pioneered the Messenger 11 years ago. Today we’ve reinvented it for the next decade, when in-product messaging will become the primary channel for businesses to engage with customers.”
In other customer experience and digital marketing software news …
Soul Machines AI Avatar ‘Digital Iris’ Continues Work at DFW
On Oct. 11, Soul Machines, a digital AI avatar company with capabilities driven by IBM, announced its “Digital Person” will stay on the job at the Dallas Fort Worth International Airport (DFW) following the pilot program’s initial rollout in June.
Company officials said “digital Iris” was built to assist airport visitors at information kiosks and is enabled by Soul Machines AI technology to control Iris’ CGI-based appearance, animation and interface to AI and enterprise platforms with real-time gestures; IBM Watson Assistant allows Digital Iris to understand the verbal requests of passengers and has a toolchain of Speech-to-Text (STT), conversational analytics and Text-to-Speech (TTS) capabilities.
In a statement announcing the news, company officials describe the tech as a “realistic, animated digital persona who can hear, see, understand and communicate with appropriate facial expressions and gestures based on the responses and expressions shown by the customer, in real-time.”
“In an era when the air travel industry is up against serious logistical challenges, maximizing both efficiency and customer experience is more important than ever,” Greg Cross, CEO of Soul Machines, said in a statement. “That’s why the work of DFW to embrace the concept of Digital People and introduce Digital Iris to its travelers is commendable.”
QuestionPro Acquires Journey Mapping Platform SuiteCX
QuestionPro, a provider of online survey and research services, has announced the acquisition of SuiteCX, a CX and journey mapping platform provider. In a statement emailed to CMSWire, company officials said the result will be a fully integrated, end-to-end solution for the customer experience.
“All too often brands invest the time and effort to perfect the customer experience and customer journey in theory, only to have reality interfere,” Ken Peterson, president of QuestionPro CX, said in a statement. “The integration of SuiteCX into QuestionPro will make it easy for CX professionals to not only create that perfect map, but then see what is actually happening in practice along with the insights and tools to make the necessary changes.”
InSite AI Lands $19M Led by NewRoad Capital and Microsoft’s Venture Fund
“Large consumer brands have long been challenged by the time, cost and debate involved in determining the best category, sales and revenue management strategies,” Shaveer Mirpuri, co-founder of Insite AI, said in statement. “Insite AI is the first technology that allows them to input target financial or commercial objectives and receive recommendations for capturing incremental ROI from sales, marketing, trade and innovation investments.”
Related Article: Sendinblue Acquires Yodel.io, Flatfile Lands $50M, More News
EcoCart Raises $14.5M for Sustainable Ecommerce
EcoCart, a sustainable software infrastructure company, recently announced it raised a $14.5M in Series A funding led by Fifth Wall Climate. Company officials said they will leverage the funds to continue making ecommerce more transparent and sustainable.
“Using EcoCart is like having your own trusted sustainability team to guide you through the process of measuring, offsetting and analyzing your carbon footprint,” Kyle Hency, EcoCart’s co-founder, said in a statement. “Their way of threading sustainability into the shopping experience doesn’t only help brands communicate about what they’re doing to be more sustainable, but it genuinely delights customers in the moment. It’s also an extremely easy way for ecommerce brands to take that first step toward operating more sustainably, which removes potentially the biggest hurdle brands face when they first start considering sustainability.”
Fashion Platform Trendsi Closes $25M in Series A Funding
Trendsi was founded by CEO Ella Zhang along with co-founders Sherwin Xia, Maddie Davidson, Owen Ma and Wayne Chen, forming a team of ecommerce and supply-chain operators providing inventory, drop ship and back-end infrastructure for retail businesses.
Company officials said the funding will enable the company to expand in merchandise categories like home decor, accessories and makeup — as well as fund international expansion and an investment in data infrastructure and supply chain technology through AI/machine learning in areas like inventory, sales forecasting and unique product curation.
“The No. 1 pain point for ecommerce business is supply chain, and that is exactly what Trendsi is solving, for Ella and the exceptional Trendsi team are putting automation and machine learning to work to empower anyone from anywhere in the world to sell high-quality and trendy products,” Xuezhao Lan, Trendsi board director, said in statement. “They are one of the very few teams who’s able to build the advanced tech as well as complex supply-chain operations in commerce.”
Reworked Honors Employee Experience Leaders
And lastly, a bit of news from CMSWire’s sister publication, Reworked, which covers the employee experience and digital workplace community. Reworked announced the 2022 Employee Experience Leader of the Year and the Reworked IMPACT Award recipients during its Digital Workplace Experience conference Oct 12-13.
The Employee Experience Leader of the Year was presented to Ann Marr, EVP, global human resources at World Wide Technology (WWT). Finalists who received honorable mentions include Michelle Braden, vice president, Global Talent Development at WEX Inc., and Mollie Smith, executive director of Child Care Answers.
Other 2022 honorees included: Mezmo for Employee Journey Innovation, Comcast for Collaboration Excellence and Dale Carnegie for Collaboration Excellence. The conference, run virtually since 2020, will be rebranded as the Reworked CONNECT conference for 2023 and will be an in-person event.