Let’s Talk About Chatbots
We live in an age where technology is at our fingertips. Ask a question and receive an answer within minutes. Don’t know how to do something? Just Google it. Instant gratification and quick response time are the keys to our fast-paced society. When we have to wait, frustration sets in. How can we meet the needs of our customers while also giving them what they need, when they need it?
Chatbots… WHAT THE HECK ARE THEY? Really, they’re not that complicated. We promise.
Here’s what HubSpot says: a chatbot is “nothing more than a computer program that automates certain tasks, typically by chatting with a user through a conversational interface.”
Many brands can spend countless hours completing mundane tasks that could easily be accomplished by a chatbot. In this instance, time could easily be reallocated serving customers where it matters most.
Now that we know what chatbots actually are, let’s discuss why they’re so beneficial.
Imagine you want to ask a brand a question about a product or service. Now, instead of going through a long, tedious process to find an answer to a simple question that maybe lots of people ask, you can ask a chatbot the question and will be guided to a quicker solution.
In this day and age, many people are turning to voice-technology to get the job done. The faster, the better. According to HubSpot, 71% of people are willing to use messaging apps to get customer assistance. They also explain that, “all a buyer wants is the most direct line between their problem and the solution.” So why not cater to that need?
Maybe you’re thinking, “I’ve had terrible experiences with bots, why would I want to use one?” Yes, bots have received a bad reputation over the years, mainly because they haven’t delivered the results we thought they would or should deliver. Don’t be too quick to say no.
If this tactic is in line with your marketing strategy and you have proper expectations, chatbots can be incredibly useful. At the end of the day, we must remember that a chatbot is a chatbot, not a human.
In a study done by Forester, 5% of companies worldwide said they were using chatbots regularly in 2016, and 32% were planning to use them in 2017.
So, you’ve decided that you might want to use a chatbot for your business. How do you go about deciding if a chatbot works best for your brand? You need to ask yourself why you want to use one. Is it to drive sales? Help with customer acquisition? Understanding these attributes will help you build a chatbot that will best suit your customers’ needs and reach your overall marketing objectives. You must know the different platforms that are compatible with bots, such as Facebook and WhatsApp, and what platforms your audience is most prevalent.
When building a chatbot, remember:
- Know the conversations that are happening around your brand.
- Make a flowchart of possible responses for your chatbot.
- Keep your chatbot simple. Find what you’re good at and stick to it!
Chatbots are tools to help better serve customers with minimal hassle and quick solutions. If you have a problem, there’s a chatbot for that.
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