December 9, 2020

What is Natural Language Processing and Why Your Apartment Chatbot Needs It

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Given the explosive growth rate of the chatbot market this year — including apartment chatbots — it’s likely that it was a bot. In fact, it’s predicted that 85% of customer interactions will be handled by chatbots by the end of 2021.

But thanks to advancements in chatbot technology, the conversations we’re having with many bots are pretty identical to human-to-human interactions.

What’s the key to a seamless, helpful, human-like chatbot convo?

Natural language processing.

NLP is a type of artificial intelligence technology that helps to provide meaning and context to text-based questions, allowing chatbots to understand a customer’s messages and respond appropriately.

Not all chatbots use NLP, though — some are rule- or keyword-based, also known as decision-tree chatbots. These bots can only answer the questions they’re programmed to answer. For instance, it might be able to tell you that pets are allowed in an apartment community, but it probably can’t tell you anything more about the pet policy beyond the basics.

Read on to learn more about NLP and why your apartment chatbot needs it!

What is natural language processing?

NLP is a form of artificial intelligence that allows chatbots to understand a user’s messages and produce a fitting response.

The crucial part of NLP technology is the understanding of intent, which is different from simply knowing what is being said. When communicating with a NLP bot, customers experience a naturally flowing conversation without the frustrating hiccups that can occur with rule-based bots.

How does natural language processing work?

As we mentioned earlier, NLP is not rule-based. Prospects can type in full, complex sentences, and NLP breaks down the sentence structure and utilizes its knowledge of grammar, idioms and patterns to determine what the user is trying to say. This is true even if a dozen users say the same thing a dozen different ways.

This is possible because NLP chatbots learn as time goes on and they continuously improve as more data comes in, which is a process called machine learning. So, a multifamily chatbot that’s been around for several years, like the Respage Chatbot, is a veteran when it comes to handling queries from prospects. (In fact, it’s able to correctly answer 97% of prospects’ questions.) Interactions get smoother and smoother the more practice the chatbot gets, and it becomes more helpful and valuable as it builds its knowledge.

Why is natural language processing important?

You can have an apartment chatbot without NLP, but your outcomes will be more successful with it. NLP makes chatbot interactions easier, more accurate, and capable of learning so that it grows more powerful with each conversation. Without NLP, chatbots wouldn’t be able to differentiate between certain phrases. For example, it needs NLP to give the chatbot context so it can tell the difference between “Hello” and “Goodbye” and come up with an appropriate response.

NLP can also overcome communication barriers, like spelling and grammatical mistakes, and help you apartment chatbot interpret the intent of the message in spite of the errors.

Conclusion

NLP is a significant factor when it comes to chatbots — it’s the tool that allows the bot to interpret a user’s intent and reply appropriately. Thanks to machine learning, NLP chatbots get increasingly helpful and accurate as time goes on. Since the Respage Chatbot is the longest-running A.I.-powered bot in Multifamily, with millions of conversations with prospects under its belt, it won’t have the learning curve that other bots require. If you’re interested in learning more about how an NLP apartment chatbot like the Respage Chatbot could benefit your apartment community, contact us!