Frank Ohlhorst of GIGAOM recently spent some time with Marchex to understand our newest product, Marchex Speech Analytics. His review was a thorough and accurate representation of the work my colleagues and I have spent years developing, and it was great to see his review in print. More than six million people trust GIGAOM each month for accurate and timely research and analysis of emerging technology. I couldn’t be prouder of the work our team at Marchex has put in to making sure our solution is highly accurate, effective, and built for the success of our customers.
Since that post in GIGAOM, we’ve been featured in several other publications, and our competitors seemed to have noticed, even rebutting Mr. Ohlhorst’s product review in their own blog.
From our point of view, we’re not sure we have a true competitor in this space. Other technologies are really good at what they do, but for companies that drive phone calls to drive revenue or book appointments, Mr. Ohlhorst said it best when he said Marchex is, “setting the standard in speech analytics with their purpose-built technology.”
IBM recently published two concerns with comparisons of speech technology (such as Marchex and IBM Watson):
Let’s address each of these points individually.
IBM makes the argument that for automatic speech recognition (ASR) systems to be “truly comparable” both systems need to be “trained and tested on the same data”.This is not an accurate statement. Both IBM and Marchex offer an out-of-the-box US English narrowband (i.e. meant for telephony data) model. IBM claims that to compare accuracy we must test using a corpus called SWITCHBOARD.
SWITCHBOARD is a low diversity (543 speakers), limited content (309 hours), nonspontaneous (conversations are forced based on predefined topics), and antiquated (recorded originally in 1992, 25 years ago) corpus which will tell you ZERO about how a speech recognition system will perform in the wild. A more accurate methodology for testing two different systems is to take real, unseen conversations and submit them to both systems and measure how they perform. This methodology was applied in the recent benchmark testing, performed by Frank Ohlhorst at GIGOM , which independently verified Marchex’s superior accuracy. Five hours of real, previously unseen, unfiltered conversations were submitted to both systems, and with this test, Marchex demonstrated a relative accuracy improvement of approximately 30 percent.
The second argument made by IBM implies that our ASR system has been pre-customized with inaccessible data. Once again, if you read the details of the study and our research paper, you will find no such pre-customization has been done. Marchex offers a standard US English telephony ASR model based on very large corpus of unbiased phone call data. We measured our generic model against IBM’s generic model with unseen data and the results are indisputable: Out-of-the-box, when looking at generic conversational data plainly shows Marchex’s ASR system is the better choice for you and your business.
So, where does that leave us? IBM claims that you should only trust a test relying on an irrelevant data set that will give you zero indication of real world performance. They also suggest that if you hand over all your data, spend time and resources customizing their software, only then can you build an equally accurate, if not better solution. And, sure, that’s an option. The better option is an out-of-the-box solution that provides a level of accuracy that is unparalleled. A better option is one that saves you time and money associated with set-up and onboarding costs. A better option is one that is proven to work with your business, delivering unparalleled accuracy at a lower price point, designed for your needs.
When your business needs to understand not only what drove a customer to call, but what happened on that call, you need a solution designed for your needs. Marchex Speech Analytics is designed with your business in mind, with technology that allows you to analyze everything from products, services, and special promotions requested to missed opportunities. You want to convert more of your callers into customers, you want to target high-converting media channels, and you need to make sure that your phone agents are optimizing their time and always improving your customer’s experience. Marchex Speech Analytics is a solution built to accelerate your business, a solution designed for your needs.
IBM requires custom configurations to work for your company. That adds time, cost and complexity. Marchex is better because it was custom built for you, and works right out of the box. And Mr. Ohlhorst agrees.
Publish Date: June 26, 2017 5:00 AM
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|Analyzing Analytics—The Power of Marchex Speech Analytics in Review||June 26, 2017 5:00 AM|
|Measuring Politeness: How Phone Calls Impact Your Business [Webinar]||June 15, 2017 5:00 AM|
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