Rob May

Recent Posts

Mapping The AI Buyer's Journey

Posted by Rob May on Mar 8, 2018 8:12:13 AM

For almost a decade now, the "buyer's journey" has been the lens through which B2B marketers view their customer. The general concept is that the typical B2B buyer does a significant amount of research before engaging with a seller, and the framework makes it easier to map content of various types to the stage of buyer research. But artificial intelligence has thrown a wrench into the buyer's journey.

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Topics: Marketing, knowledge management, Digital Workers

Testing Talla Against Our Own A.I. Bullshit Detector

Posted by Rob May on Jan 12, 2018 6:35:05 PM

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We recently launched an ebook called "Bullshit, Hype, and a Little Bit of Magic: How To Make Sense of It All When Buying A.I. Products." Today I want to take a quick tour of Talla to understand where we stack up against our own analysis.

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Topics: Artificial Intelligence, knowledge management

What Talla's $8.3M Means For Our Customers

Posted by Rob May on Jun 19, 2017 11:00:08 AM

Today we are very excited to announce our $8.3M Series A round, led by Glasswing Ventures, with participation from new investors PJC, Pillar, and Launch Capital.

The bot space has received mixed press over the past few months, but as a company working actively in the space, we have seen a huge uptick during that same time period in businesses looking at bots to help solve and scale operational problems.  I wrote a separate post on Medium about why we chose the investors we chose, and how the round came together.  In this post on our own blog I want to focus on what this means for Talla's customer base.

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Topics: About

How Do You Evaluate a Conversational Interface In The Buying Process?

Posted by Rob May on Jun 7, 2017 8:27:29 AM

We've now had thousands of companies try Talla, and we have learned a lot from our metrics about how people evaluate bots and conversational interfaces.  The most interesting thing so far is that when the Talla trial ends, most enterprises don't make a decision to buy or pass - they email us and ask for a trial extension because they don't feel like they have evaluated it enough.  As we dug into this issue, our analysis of the data and discussions with customers in the trial process allowed us to develop a few hypotheses about why this happens.   The number 1 issue seems to be that, given the open ended nature of a conversational interface, it is difficult to know when you have said enough things to it to know it works well.  With that in mind, here is our recommendation for how you evaluate bots and conversational interfaces in general, and then we will write a follow up post for evaluating Talla specifically.

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Topics: Conversational UIs, Future of Work, Bots

Announcing the New Talla ServiceAssistant - An Intelligent Conversational ServiceDesk

Posted by Rob May on Apr 5, 2017 10:45:09 AM

Today we have a big announcement. You’ve probably watched the “bot” industry over the last year with some skepticism. We have too. And we spent the last year building a product with everything we learned about bots that we believe highlights all the strengths of bots and conversational interfaces, without the weaknesses.

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Topics: Product Updates

Announcing Talla for Microsoft Teams

Posted by Rob May on Mar 14, 2017 12:54:05 PM

We're excited to announce the future Talla integration for Microsoft Teams. Talla is an A.I.-driven service assistant for managing HR operations, onboarding, internal FAQs and more, all from within an organization's chat platform. The Talla platform gives businesses the ability to easily manage and prioritize inquiries, automate answering repetitive questions, and keep employees engaged. 

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Topics: Product Updates

Announcing BracketBot: Manage Your NCAA Tournament Bracket In Slack

Posted by Rob May on Mar 2, 2017 2:39:48 PM

I love basketball and, as a University of Kentucky graduate, March Madness is the best time of the year. In fact, at Backupify (my last company) and Talla, the first two days of the NCAA basketball tournament are official company holidays. (Also, we’re hiring!)

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Topics: Product Updates

Talla Product Updates

Posted by Rob May on Aug 2, 2016 10:23:00 AM

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It's been a while since we wrote on this blog because we've been running an experiment and only posting on Medium.com.  Now that we have digested the results of that experiment, we intend to publish on both places.  Before we get started writing again here on Talla.com, I want to update you on some of the things we've done the past few months, in case you missed it.

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Topics: Deep Learning, Neural Networks, NLP

Tapjoy CTO Sean Lindsay Joins Talla Board of Directors

Posted by Rob May on Mar 23, 2016 10:20:00 AM

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Several years ago, when I was new to the Boston startup scene, I was introduced to Sean Lindsay.  We met for beers and instantly hit it off.  Sean is one of those rare guys who loves to go out after work and talk about work.  It's always been clear that Sean loves what he does.  Over the years, we've had a lot more beers and dinners and other types of events together, and through our many conversations about business and technology, I new I wanted to work with Sean in some capacity.  So I am very excited to announce that Sean has officially joined the Talla Board of Directors as an Independent Director.

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Topics: About

How We Approached The Allen A.I. Challenge on Kaggle

Posted by Rob May on Jan 11, 2016 11:11:00 AM

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When I started a machine intelligence company, the first thing a VC said to me was "You can't do it. There aren't enough good data scientists out there, and you won't be able to find any." He was wrong of course. But, I knew that as we went to raise money, VCs would ultimately ask about the team. How do I know that the Talla data science team is up to the task? The majority of VCs like to back teams that have Stanford engineering degrees, Harvard MBAs, and then a stint at Google or Facebook, but I prefer to hire weirdos, and I knew VCs wouldn't accept them on their credentials alone, because I'm not hiring the kind of person they want. So one way to get around this VC question was to do some sort of task that shows we have a good team. And that is why we decided to participate in the Allen A.I. Challenge on Kaggle. This post is about how we approached that problem.

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Topics: Deep Learning, NLP