Twilio uses OpenAI for generative AI

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Twilio continues to expand the capabilities of its customer engagement platform with today’s announcement of a new integration with generative AI leader OpenAI.

The new integration will bring OpenAI’s GPT-4 model to the Twilio Engage platform, which enables organizations to create highly personalized and targeted marketing campaigns.

Twilio has a large community of users and developers creating different types of customer engagement tools. Twilio says it has more than 10 million developers using the company’s APIs and there have already been a series of efforts to bring the power of ChatGPT and its ability to generate responses with voice service by Twilio.

With the new GPT-4 integration, Twilio aims to formalize its work with OpenAI and plans to have OpenAI CEO Sam Altman speak at the Twilio Signal conference later this month.


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OpenAI is just one part of a larger initiative known as Twilio CustomerAI. Alex Millet, senior product manager at Twilio, told VentureBeat that CustomerAI was first introduced in June, to bring both generative and predictive AI to the Twilio community.

“This integration advances the generative element of that vision and will allow Twilio customers to use OpenAI’s GPT-4 model to create personalized customer journeys and marketing content within Twilio Engage, which is the solution for ‘Twilio’s marketing automation built on the segment’s customer data platform,’ says Millet.

Why Generative AI is Right for Twilio and Its Customers

For Twilio, there are a number of reasons why and where generative AI is a beneficial technology that will have business impact.

On the one hand, there is a growing need for highly personalized customer interactions. Millet noted that recent research on Twilio confirmed that consumer loyalty to a given brand depends on high-quality personalization and tailored engagement.

The Twilio report found that 56% of consumers will only become repeat buyers after a personalized experience, a 7% increase from the previous year’s report. Millet said this puts a lot of pressure on CX managers and marketers to retain customers and maintain customer satisfaction levels, especially in a time when budgets are more constrained and bandwidth of the team is limited.

This is where Twilio sees generative and predictive AI integrate. Millet emphasized that AI is only as good as the data that powers it, which Twilio provides with its customer data platform. By combining AI with good data, Millet expects marketers to be able to achieve exceptional levels of personalization while recouping time spent creating communications from scratch.

The road ahead for Twilio CustomerAI

Twilio’s holistic view of CustomerAI goes beyond simply incorporating OpenAI models.

To date, Twilio has also announced a series of additional partnerships with AI vendors, including with Google and Frame AI in June, and with AWS in July. All of these partnerships will come together to help realize the larger vision of Twilio Customer AI. The real value of CustomerAI, according to Millet, is that companies can organize and combine customer insight with generative and predictive AI capabilities to help them better understand and deliver deeper value to their customers.

“In its simplest form, CustomerAI is about enabling businesses to deliver personalized experiences to customers faster and easier,” Millet said. β€œIt sounds simple, but the reality is that capturing all that signal across the customer journey – marketing, sales, customer service, product – in real time is complex.”

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