Menselijke chatbots: een zegen voor online klantcontact? Het effect van conversational human voice door chatbots op social pesence en merkattitude

Translated title of the contribution: Humanlike chatbots: a blessing for online social customer service?

Christine Liebrecht*, Evi van der Weegen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

Abstract

Chatbots for customer service purposes are advancing fast. However, little was known about the communication style brands should adopt in chatbot communication. From the literature on organizational communication between brands and customers, the concept of conversational human voice (Kelleher, 2009; Kelleher & Miller, 2006) was incorporated in chatbot communication. In a 2x2 between subjects experiment, 125 participants engaged in conversations with a customer service chatbot in the travel sector. Besides the presence or absence of conversational human voice, the chatbots also differed in brand familiarity. The results revealed customer service chatbots with a conversational human voice increase one's brand attitude and perceived warmth via social presence, without affecting the perceived brand competence. Furthermore, we did not find evidence for brand familiarity to moderate these findings. Our results support the theory of Computers are Social Actors (CASA) and indicate the perceived humanness of computers could increase by means of the adopted communication style.

Translated title of the contributionHumanlike chatbots: a blessing for online social customer service?
Original languageDutch
Pages (from-to)217-238
Number of pages23
JournalTijdschrift voor Communicatiewetenschap
Volume47
Issue number3-4
Publication statusPublished - 2019

Keywords

  • online customer service
  • chatbots
  • conversational human voice
  • brand familiarity
  • social presence
  • CONVERSATIONAL HUMAN VOICE
  • COMMUNICATION
  • MACHINES
  • AGENTS
  • REAL
  • STRATEGIES
  • REPUTATION
  • ATTITUDE
  • WEBCARE
  • ELIZA

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