Chat bots are the latest in marketing technology but many people still haven’t heard of them or, if they have, they aren’t exactly sure what they are or think they’re complicated and techie. Well, I’m here to shed some light on what the heck they are and why you need a chat bot now!
noun: chat bot; noun: chat-bot a computer program designed to simulate conversation with human users, especially over the Internet.”chatbots often treat conversations like they’re a game of tennis: talk, reply, talk, reply
“Basically, a chat bot is having a conversation with clients on Messenger, complete with photos, gifs, videos, PDF and document downloads. You can create a sequence, just as you would with email, to have the client move through a sales funnel. You can program different sequences depending on their answers to different questions, giving them information as you would in a conversation
But they are so much more than just another form of email. Think of a chat bot as a hybrid of email with texting. How do you communicate with your family and friends in messenger? Short, concise, using emojis or gifs to sum things up and add entertainment value. You can tell a story, get feedback, be entertaining and create a relationship with your clients you can’t through another medium.
So now that we know what a chat bot is, let’s explore why you need one now.
- It’s Where Your Clients Are
Any successful marketing campaign goes where the eyeballs are. In 2014, Mark Zuckerberg said; “Messaging is one of the few things that people do more than social networking.” And he should know. Not surprising, then, that he acquired WhatsApp for a cool $19 billion, banking on the idea of instant messaging being the way of the future.
And that future is happening. Social media has been the darling for the past number of years – until now. Messaging apps have outpaced all other forms of social media apps, as this graph from Business Insider shows:
While a quarter of all social apps are abandoned after their first use, messaging apps continue to grow in popularity. There are over 1.2 BILLION people using Facebook Messenger monthly and 2.6 billion people have at least one messaging app installed on their smart phone. That figure is expected to hit 3.6 billion in a few years, which is half of humanity.
2. Chat Bots are Incredibly Effective
Email campaigns have an open rate of around 22%. If your click through rate hits 4% or higher, you’ve hit marketing gold.
Now imagine your direct marketing campaign having an open rate of 90% and a click through rate hitting 22%. Conversion rates of 10% or more.
This is the power of Chat Bots. Why are they so successful? Because it’s hard for someone to ignore that “ping” when they’ve received a message. It’s there, right in front of them, to read and engage with. The problem with social media is not everyone sees your posts. Your Tweet gets buried within 24 minutes. That post on Facebook? Only 35% of your friends or fans will see it. Where would you prefer to focus your marketing efforts and dollars?
3. People Prefer Bots
Believe it or not, 48% of customers prefer to work with a bot than a human customer service rep. In a recent survey by Kenashoo, 59% of respondents are already interacting with brands via Facebook Messenger. Over half feel that messaging apps are a faster and more immediate avenue for answering questions and less hassle than speaking on the phone. Nearly half (46%) said they would be inclined to interact with brands via messaging apps if it meant they could receive exclusive offers or deals. And in another survey, 47% said they would buy items through a Chat Bot.As they saying goes, give the people what they want.
4. Chat Bots are Versatile
Dutch airline KLM is utilizing Chat Bots to confirm booking confirmation, check-in notification, boarding passes as well as flight notifications. In 10 languages. No need to download an app as it’s all sent to Messenger if the client chooses to when they book their tickets.
Fandango customers can use a Chat Bot to watch a movie trailer, find a theatre nearby, see playing times and then send you to the page to buy your tickets.
Have an event or webinar coming up? Ping your clients just beforehand as a reminder and they can click on the link to attend.
Have a coupon or a discount code for a product? Send it out on the Chat Bot.
From sales funnels to daily tips to building brand identity, Chat Bots can do it all – far easier and more cost-effective than other methods.
5. Your Competition Isn’t Using Them Yet
Yup. I’d wager a pretty hefty bet that your main competitors aren’t using a Chat Bot (heck, they likely don’t even know what one is). What better way to get the literal leg up on the rest of the pack than to incorporate cutting edge technology that is highly effective and won’t break the bank. Game changer.
I remember being at a wedding 10 years ago and a guest gave me a tip. He worked for Apple and whispered that I should buy stock. Now. There was something major coming down the pipes and it was going to change the world. Well, turns out he was talking about the iPhone, which has changed our lives and made those with Apple stock very very rich (and I’m still kicking myself for not heeding his advice).
Chat Bots are the smart phones of this decade. Get ahead of the curve and you gain a huge amount of ground on your competition. Ted Livingston, the found of the bot Kik, said; “Chat apps will come to be thought of as the new browsers; bots will be the new websites. This is the beginning of a new Internet.”
Before you write this statement off as hyperbole by someone with a hefty self-interest, consider that Facebook has gone all-in with Messenger and bots. Other major players like Skype and Slack have also integrated messaging for bots into their platforms. If these major players are putting their chips into the bot game, the rest of us should probably follow their lead.
So there you have it, five reasons why you need to have a Chat Bot now!
Want to learn more? Join us for a free webinar (click here) where we’ll dive into the wonderful world of Chat Bots and how you can be a part of it!