Announcing AI by Zapier Beta Launch

  • 5 January 2021
  • 19 replies
  • 977 views
Announcing AI by Zapier Beta Launch
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TL;DW -- today we're beta-launching our take on AI! Take any text input — like an email body, Slack message, or Tweet — and extract data, answer simple questions...almost anything! Later steps can use the intelligent output to do filtering, routing, or even simple responses. Add it to your Zaps today!

TL;DR -- check out the 10 minute YouTube demo video and then add the beta app to your Zapier account to get started.

Hey folks, Bryan here, I'm one of the co-founders and CTO of Zapier. I'd like to introduce to the Community a new app we've been working on called AI by Zapier. The first version offers three actions that are built to handle freeform blobs of text:

  • Parse Lead -- we'll extract first name, last name, email, address, state, etc. Use this when you have a very standardized lead or contact to parse.
  • Route Message -- we'll match an input to the best available route you've defined. Use this when you want to route some inquiry to some team.
  • Parse Any Data -- like Parse Lead, but you define your own fields (this is extremely powerful!). Use this for pretty much anything. It's like a Swiss Army Knife! 🇨🇭

These actions are best paired with any trigger app that produces blobs of text that are traditionally hard to analyze or work with. Triggers like New Email, New Tweet, New Post, New Message, and so forth. They often contain valuable information, but are stuck inside a freeform blob of text instead of laid out in a structured way you might see in a spreadsheet.

For example, maybe you want to categorize social media posts (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, forums, blog comments, etc.) according to their sentiment or topic. You can even ask a specific question like "is feature request", "mentions jobs/careers" -- and amazingly, subjective things like "is spam" or "is constructive" also work pretty well!

Another example, maybe you have an incoming email from vacation rental booking sites (Airbnb, VRBO, etc.) and want to parse out the dates for the booking, the property they are staying at, as well as their contact information. Pretty much any data a "human" could extract, can be accomplished with AI by Zapier!

And one final example, when triggering on messages from customers or colleagues you could take a single stream and split it out to go to whatever person or team is best suited to handle it. You might send all questions about "laptops, phones, or other devices" to Rose in IT, or maybe all inquiries about "payroll, benefits, or employment" to Johnny in HR.

If you want to see it in action, I've recorded a 10 minute YouTube demo video that showcases the off-the-shelf "Parse Lead" action as well as a customized "Parse Any Data" using my own examples. If you'd like to try it, then add the beta app to your Zapier account to get started!

I hope you enjoy it! And please post in this thread with how you are using it, or, whatever trouble you run into!

Frequently Asked Questions

Can AI by Zapier operate on photos or video?

No, not today. We can only do text.

AI by Zapier isn't working perfectly for me...

Try tweaking your examples!

For example, in the Parse Any Data action, try a more descriptive label (IE: "sentiment positive or negative" instead of "sentiment"), try adding another example (IE: you can provide up to 5), or try replacing an existing example (IE: substitute a complex one for a simpler one, or vice versa). Not all use cases will be perfect, but you can usually achieve 90% or greater accuracy with careful tuning. If you are using Parse Lead or Route Message, try contacting us or switching to Parse Any Data to tweak to fit your use case.

I'm getting errors about length. What gives?

This is expected and is a model limitation. First try shortening your inputs and if possible, try removing or shortening some examples. The AI can only handle about 1200 words per run, which is about 220 or so words per example if you use all 5. It isn't unusual for emails with lots of cruft in them to blow that out!

Why will AI by Zapier be a premium app?

The models that run this are insanely complex and expensive to operate. We're not even sure we can do it economically today at our current pricing, but we expect the cost to come down over time as this sort of compute becomes more commoditized or the models are made more efficient.

Does AI by Zapier have any sort of memory?

No, every time we execute an AI by Zapier step, the AI is reset to a "blank slate". So past steps won't directly influence future steps. For example, if it sees information from a message in the past, it won't "remember" that information to answer future questions. 


19 replies

Userlevel 6
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Wow! Amazing step forward! 

 

Will there be other languages like spanish, german etc? Can't wait to use it for our clients 🙂

Userlevel 7
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FYI: I get this error when testing with the described input example.

Action: Parse Lead from Freeform Text

Freeform Input Text: Thanks for the reply Robert Example, we'll give you a call back ASAP at 214-555-9854!

 

Userlevel 5
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@Troy Tessalone looks like a bug, let me fix that!

Userlevel 5
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@Troy Tessalone looks like a bug, let me fix that!

Try again! I just raised the limit quite a bit, we might need to tune it again so that it behaves properly!

Userlevel 5
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Will there be other languages like spanish, german etc? Can't wait to use it for our clients 🙂

I think Spanish and German will work… give it a try!

Userlevel 7
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@bryanhelmig Confirming it did not error when tested again, thanks.

Userlevel 7
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@bryanhelmig Is there a app page for this app? (e.g. https://zapier.com/apps/gmail)

Specifically looking for a cheat sheet of documentation around the standardized/suggested inputs such as those shown in the video?

  • customer needs response
  • positive or negative sentiment
  • used all caps
  • etc.
Userlevel 5
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@bryanhelmigIs there a app page for this app? (e.g. https://zapier.com/apps/gmail)

Specifically looking for a cheat sheet of documentation around the standardized/suggested inputs such as those shown in the video?

  • customer needs response
  • positive or negative sentiment
  • used all caps
  • etc.

@Troy Tessalone we don’t. In fact, there is no “preset” list of support inputs. It literally can be anything you dream up -- its a statistical model based on a insanely large corpus of text sourced from the internet. So it understands incredible nuance. You could ask it if it mentions a color, you could ask for the mentioned booking date, you could ask if the text demonstrates a preference for giraffes or wildebeests, etc.

As we see cool use cases, we’ll definitely compile suggestions to get users’ juices flowing -- but there isn’t a set list of supported prompts. It would certainly encompass the entire English language!

Userlevel 7
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@bryanhelmig 

For action “Parse Lead from Free Form Text”, is there a list of data points that can possibly be returned?

These are the data points I’ve seen thus far:

  1. first_name
  2. last_name
  3. name
  4. phone_number
  5. email
  6. address
  7. city
  8. state
  9. zip_code

 

[FEATURE REQUEST]

If there is a standardized max list of data points that could be returned, would it be possible for the action step results to include all those data points even if there is a NULL value for a data point?

Or even the ability to select/choose which data points are returned?

This would help in configuring/mapping/filtering Zap steps.

 

Thanks.

 

 

Userlevel 7
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@bryanhelmig 

[FEATURE REQUEST]

For the action “Parse Any Data from Freeform Text”, would it be possible to indicate the desired data points to be returned from each run, regardless of whether the AI can determine the answer?

For example, always return Size, Color, Price, Quantity, etc.

This would help in configuring/mapping/filtering Zap steps.

 

 

Userlevel 5
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@Troy Tessalone great idea! I can make both of those happen tomorrow. 

Userlevel 5
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@Troy Tessalone I made that change, hope that helps!

Userlevel 7
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@bryanhelmig Thanks!

Userlevel 3
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This is great. However, clicking the “Accept Invite” button is not working for me. It’s just bringing me back to my dashboard and not adding in the app. Any advice?

Userlevel 5
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@sphynxautomation hmmm, that’s odd. When you go to the editor and do a hard refresh (shift click refresh), do you see it appear? You might try emailing contact@zapier.com -- there is a lot better tooling for debugging customer problems for those who email in there.

Userlevel 3
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@bryanhelmig alas, no luck but I’ll reach out to contact@zapier.com. Thanks for the assistance!

ETA - I got it to work by just starting a new Zap and searching from the apps list. It wasn’t showing there earlier (or I missed it) but I thought I’d try again and voila. Super excited to test this out!

Userlevel 6
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@bryanhelmig same issue I dont get the app in the app list. 

Userlevel 2
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Great concept, however the word/character limit severely limits the usability for even very basic emails.

Userlevel 3
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@bryanhelmig This is awesome. I’m curious…. you provided a couple use cases in your demo video (great job on that by the way!), but what are the wildest/coolest use cases you’ve thought of for this?

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