In several previous articles, I highlighted how Generative AI is set to revolutionize Customer Experience Management (CEM) for CX professionals. Specifically, I discussed how large language models can support analytics and the discovery of potential opportunities to improve customer experience.

As I worked with the data, I stumbled upon a crucial realization: our current survey designs need to leverage the tremendous capabilities of large language models. This oversight is significant because the same models revolutionizing the analytical phase will undoubtedly impact how we gather customer information. My proposition is radical but necessary: We need more unstructured data. Yes, you read that right. We should encourage customers to describe their likes and dislikes in their own words and then use the vast amount of unstructured data to make recommendations and decisions. This approach is a stark departure from traditional methods of managing customer experience.

The New Generative AI CX Era

In today’s digital era, understanding consumer needs and behavior is pivotal for businesses to remain competitive and build strong customer relationships. Customer Experience Management (CEM) is a practice businesses adopt to understand, manage, and enhance the customer journey. Traditionally, this process has been primarily driven by surveys with a classical approach to information gathering, involving many closed questions and structured formats. However, the advent of Generative AI and large language models is reshaping how we design and interpret surveys, thus leading to a paradigm shift in Customer Experience Management.

A New Way of Designing Surveys

Traditional surveys consist of a series of closed questions, limiting the respondents’ answers to predefined options with the explicit goal of testing one or more hypotheses. While this approach makes data collection and analysis relatively straightforward, it often fails to capture the nuances of customer feedback and can miss out on valuable insights. Open-ended questions allow respondents to express their thoughts and feelings in their own words, providing more prosperous and detailed feedback. However, analyzing such unstructured data has always been a challenge.

Generative AI and large language models can deeply and accurately analyze unstructured data, such as consumer reviews or feedback. This means that businesses can now work with open questions and answers in a more conversational way while still being able to extract meaningful insights from the responses automatically. For instance, these models can analyze aspect-based sentiment, linking topics and sentiments to the right customer journey touchpoint and phase. This provides a more comprehensive view of the customer experience and helps businesses identify potential areas for improvement.

From Static to Dynamic Interactions

The transition from static to dynamic surveys represents a pivotal shift in how companies collect and interpret customer feedback. Traditional static surveys comprising fixed questions and predefined answer options have long been the norm for gathering customer insights. However, this approach often needs to capture the depth and complexity of a customer’s experience. On the other hand, dynamic surveys facilitate a more interactive and conversational exchange, enabling customers to express their thoughts and feelings more freely and authentically. This shift is crucial for companies as it leads to a more engaging and personalized experience for the respondent and yields more prosperous and nuanced insights. This, in turn, empowers businesses to make more informed decisions, address customer concerns more effectively, and ultimately build stronger, more meaningful relationships with their customer base.

Harnessing the Power of Generative AI

Generative AI agents can be programmed to understand context, sentiment, and nuances in language, making them ideal for conducting open dialogues with customers. They can ask open-ended questions, respond to the customer’s answers in real-time, and adapt the conversation based on their responses. This creates a more personalized and engaging experience for the customer while providing businesses with deeper insights into their needs and preferences.

Additionally, Generative AI agents can analyze the collected data in real time, identifying patterns, trends, and areas for improvement. This allows businesses to make more informed decisions and take proactive measures to enhance the customer experience.

Automated Recommendations and Decision Explanations

Another significant advantage of using Generative AI in CEM is its ability to provide recommendations, deliver pros and cons, and explain its own decisions. This helps businesses make informed decisions based on a thorough customer feedback analysis rather than relying on gut feelings or incomplete data. Additionally, the ability of the model to explain its choices aids in building trust and confidence in the recommendations provided, making it easier for businesses to implement necessary changes.

Empowering Newcomers with a Cost-Effective Solution

For companies that are relatively new to Customer Experience Management, the transition to Generative AI represents a highly advantageous move. This shift not only accelerates the process of understanding customer needs and behaviors, enabling them to compete on par with more seasoned players in the market, but it also negates the need for a prolonged learning curve and exhaustive trial-and-error methods. As a result, newcomer companies can rapidly and cost-effectively optimize their customer experience, yielding fast results without the hefty price tag traditionally associated with such comprehensive insights.


Incorporating Generative AI into Customer Experience Management is a significant paradigm shift that will benefit both mature and newcomer companies. By allowing for more conversational and open-ended surveys, businesses can better understand their customers’ needs and experiences. Automated aspect-based sentiment analysis, recommendations, and decision explanations further enhance decision-making, enabling businesses to make informed changes and optimize the customer journey. Ultimately, this will lead to stronger customer relationships, increased loyalty, and sustainable business growth.

It’s an exciting time for businesses to embrace this change and leverage the power of Generative AI to revolutionize their Customer Experience Management efforts. The future is here, and it’s more conversational, insightful, and customer-centric.

Rethinking Survey Design in the Age of Generative AI
Federico Cesconi

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