TD Ameritrade Launches Chat Bot for Facebook Messenger

August 22, 2017

TD Ameritrade is bringing financial market updates, investor education and client account access to retail investors through Facebook Messenger. TD Ameritrade’s chat bot for Messenger – driven by artificial intelligence (AI) technology and backed by live client service support – gives retail investors one more way to access the markets and their investments where they are, when they need support, and in the most natural conversational way.

“We live in incredible times – not just the flurry of new technologies, but the way those technologies are changing behaviors and lives,” said Vijay Sankaran, chief information officer for TD Ameritrade. “Consumers are interacting with companies in more ways than ever before, and it is incumbent upon us to constantly strive to meet and exceed our clients’ expectations in new ways.”

TD Ameritrade’s bot for Messenger is a true co-bot experience, augmented by human support. Client support specialists can intervene in multiple ways. Or, at any time, clients can proactively connect with a person.

“Our goal is to use the power of technology to make finance more personal,” continued Sankaran. “When it comes to something as personal as money, people often have complex questions that only a human can answer. But, they also have lots of questions about simpler things, like where to find an IRA statement or how to reset a password, and AI gives an intelligent assistant that can answer those things anytime, anywhere. This allows our employees to focus on the human element, while our technology can make the simpler things just that – simple.”

The launch is part of the company’s larger conversational commerce strategy. To speed up execution and delivery of these new consumer-facing capabilities, the Company has built an underlying engine powered by AI that can ultimately be applied to a variety of client interaction points with little additional development. TD Ameritrade’s bot for Messenger is powered by the same underlying engine used for its Amazon Alexa skill, which launched last year.

The Company is currently building out additional features and functionality for its Alexa skill, and has plans to add basic trading features and more to its bot for Messenger.

"In everything we develop, we ask, ‘How is this adding utility, but also delight, to people’s lives?’” Sankaran continued. “We want to build relevant technology that makes people’s lives better.”

To access the experience, consumers can simply connect with TD Ameritrade on Facebook Messenger.

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