Columbia Professor, Alum Explore Conversational AI in New Book    

Professor Laurence Minsky and Scot Westwater '99 delve into the evolving landscape of marketing, analyzing the power of Conversational AI in their new book.

Laurence Minsky, professor in Columbia College Chicago’s Communication department, and Scot Westwater ’99, co-founder and CCO of Pragmatic Digital, have collaborated with two additional co-authors on a new book that decodes the marketing potential of Conversational AI (technologies that understand, respond to, and learn from customer interactions.)   

The book, Voice Marketing: Harnessing the Power of Conversational AI to Drive Customer Engagement, aims to help marketing professionals navigate the rapidly evolving landscape of Conversational AI. It features detailed case studies with top brands like Coca-Cola, Domino's and Sony Music – plus an extensive glossary of common terminology in the Conversational AI space.    


In addition to his work at Columbia, Minsky consults for leading agencies, corporations, and nonprofits. He has co-authored seven other acclaimed business books including Audio Branding: Using Sound to Build Your Brand and The Activation Imperative: How to Build Brands and Business by Inspiring Action. 

Minsky’s interest in the use of conversational AI for marketing is rooted in his audio branding research. “With voice technology, marketers need to convey the brand attributes without visual expressions,” he explains. My interest in cross-platform marketing and exposure to AI tools during my last sabbatical made it clear that this was a ripe topic, so I asked my colleague Colleen Fahey, as well as Susan and Scot Westwater – two of the top thought leaders in the use of voice – to join me on this project.”  

Westwater graduated from Columbia in 1999 with a BFA in Graphic Design. He is an award-winning creative director, marketing strategist, designer and consultant whose client experience includes many of the world’s most recognizable brands. He is the co-author of Voice Strategy and leverages design, UX, and digital strategy to create effective voice experiences.   

“Our book is filled with valuable insights and real-world examples from leading academics, AI practitioners, and innovators, delivering ready-to-implement success strategies in the voice environment,” says Westwater.    

Voice Marketing: Harnessing the Power of Conversational AI to Drive Customer Engagement is available now at all booksellers including Amazon, Barnes & Noble,, Apple books, brick-and-mortar bookstores, and directly from the publisher, Rowman & Littlefield.