In April 2016, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg revealed that third parties could use the FB Messenger platform to create their chatbot. Marketers were excited because they could now use chatbots on the front end and back-end operations to manage the company’s brand online through seamless, real-time conversational experiences with customers. That got the whole world talking about this artificially intelligent technology and how you can use it for your business.
For Facebook, however, the game didn’t go as planned as the hype died down a bit, and chatbots began to disappear from social media. It seemed as if social media marketers didn’t know how to leverage this fantastic new technology. However, at that time, several technology companies took the idea of bots seriously. They started developing these programs that used artificial intelligence and other advanced technologies such as machine learning, NLP, and natural language understanding. That meant that bots were now becoming self-learning virtual assistants. Almost every company with a virtual presence today has already installed a virtual assistant on its website or is seriously considering using one for sales preparation, customer service, customer support, and various other purposes.
What are chatbots?
But first of all, we should understand what exactly chatbots are? Simply put, they are computer programs designed to mimic human intelligence when chatting or conversing. They use the process of deep learning and recognize the language, data, and specific patterns and then use these preset phrases by transmitting them through layers of the network to provide accurate results (answers) when confronted with the same question.
- Conversations are easier to have: As SMS has evolved into instant messaging, users have adapted to the use case – it’s easy and very convenient. People feel a new, intimate connection when they text with a brand.
- Websites are clunky: The problem with many websites is that they have different structures and communication patterns – a website UX designer doesn’t necessarily have to think like the end user. The user has to deal with a lot of mental pain. The user’s messaging experience (MX) is much more streamlined and universal. If you learn to use one, you can use them all.
- Apps are redundant – App fatigue: Apps are more prominent when you download them and more cumbersome to use – they take up too much space, sit on top of the phone, and are hardly used. Most users use 3 to 5 apps on their phones and pay no attention to many others. 65% of users did not even download a new app in 2014 / 2015.
- Discoverability: One of the most significant advantages of bots is their discoverability, especially in a dominant messaging app. Messenger, for example, is dominant in specific markets, allowing companies to market a bot and make it easier for users to discover. You scan a code and are in the conversation and flow. It’s as simple as that.
The modern marketer’s best friend
Apart from being at the top of every company’s digital strategy due to their multiple benefits such as availability, ability to process large volumes, avoidance of human errors, low maintenance costs, and time savings, these digital assistants have also carved a place for themselves in a company’s marketing strategy.
By embedding them in your website to handle customer queries, chatbots have started to add value and improve user experience by providing impeccable customer service. Today, these chatbots are equipped with artificial intelligence beyond a series of specially programmed questions. The technology improves with each instance, handling more types of queries without the need for reinstallation.
How can chatbots be utilized on social media platforms?
Creating Twitter and Facebook bots to promote your business has become relatively easy. Installing chatbots on these platforms has become an exciting option for marketers to build a more personal and face-to-face relationship with their users. Gone are the days when media networks were only considered experimental grounds for evaluating chatbots‘ effectiveness! Let’s take a closer look.
Every month, one billion people use Facebook Messenger. According to a record, over 100,000 bots are used in FB Messenger for many purposes, such as product recommendations, collecting information, processing orders, etc. Therefore, installing a chatbot in this application on your company’s homepage is an effective option to consider. Creating a FB Messenger chatbot is just what you need if your audience uses this messenger. You can connect with potential clients, automate customer contacts and interactions, and do many other tasks.
Similarly, the Twitter chatbot is another platform where you can connect with your customers on a more general basis and recommend your products and services. By extending the human experience by simply starting to greet people proactively, giving quick responses, providing better guidance, using emojis, and personalizing the experience, you can take your social media bot strategy to another level.
Reasons why chatbots are the future of communication
Chatbots are having a positive impact on businesses and industries. We’ll show you the reasons why chatbots are the future of communication and customer service:
Improved user interaction
Chatbots offer businesses a way to better interact with users. Chatbots can effectively facilitate more extended conversations when a customer visits your business platform; whether through Facebook Messenger or the website, the chatbot can initiate a chat with your customers and provide real-time solutions. Natural language processing technologies allow computers to understand human languages, and chatbots can now understand the context of any conversation and provide answers that feel “human.”
Most companies give their chatbot a personality that reflects their company’s vision and goals to enhance the customer experience and branding. That can strengthen relationships with customers and drive brand loyalty.
Bots are “ubiquitous”
Today, customers are ubiquitous online. They’ve also become more sophisticated. Whether through social media, instant messaging platforms, text messaging, or email, their need for seamless customer service is insatiable. The requirement for businesses to have a presence on these multiple platforms is now more pressing than ever. Chatbots can integrate with multiple platforms to seamlessly meet the needs of customers. Many companies are deploying chatbots for this purpose. Pizza Hut, for example, is currently using chatbots to facilitate orders via instant messaging apps like Facebook Messengers, Whatsapp, etc.
Engaging your customers in their preferred medium can increase customer retention rates, which is essential for your return on investment.
Managing large volumes of requests
Chatbots are practical customer support tools. They are capable of dealing with a high volume of customer inquiries and questions through the process of automation. With chatbots, you don’t have to worry about large chat volumes. A solitary chatbot can simultaneously chat with hundreds of clients without human assistance. Since chatbots are digital software, they work continuously without having to rest or take a meal break. It helps you save costs and time.
Live agents can be overwhelmed with the flood of visitor requests while chatbots continue their high performance. You don’t want to hold up your clients and cause them to get frustrated or migrate to your competitors because they respond too slowly and spend too long on hold. We live in an age of real-time, direct communication, and chatbots are ideal for delivering a great customer experience regardless of the number of customers.
Support or complement human agents
Chatbots can effectively handle repetitive and monotonous tasks. That boosts the spirit of your business and keeps your human employees motivated and vitalized. Your human employees will focus and invest their time in complicated and laborious tasks that best utilize their intellect. With the use of chatbots, the efficiency of your business will increase as chatbots will complete their tasks quickly and seamlessly. Chatbots can also provide a customized interactive experience for customers when integrated with a recommendation engine or through machine learning.
More and more companies are deploying chatbots on social media, and the statistics only confirm this. More than 50% of companies using social media are already using chatbots. It is estimated that more than 80% of companies will take advantage of the benefits that chatbots can bring to their business.
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