What is a Chatbot, and How to Use One in Your Business?
Have you ever spent hours on the phone with customer service, watching the time tick by and thinking of all the other things you could be doing? So have your customers — which is why they are increasingly asking for chatbots.
By introducing chatbots, you can limit human interactions and human error. That alone is a great reason to employ them — but that’s not all. You can also use them to grow your business and create new marketing strategies.
More and more businesses are using chatbots every day to reduce customer service time, cost of labor, and expenses. They can also help improve customer support, generate new leads, or collect data. From banking to retail, they are drastically changing the way consumers interact with businesses.
What Are Chatbots?
A chatbot is an artificial intelligence software designed to interact with people. It uses apps, chat scripts, and websites to interact with customers. They are one of the most advanced examples of human interaction with AI.
There are two main types of chatbots:
- Chatbots based on commands
- Chatbots based on artificial intelligence or machine learning
Depending on which type you are using, you can expect different responses. Chatbots based on commands are easy to make, and they give accurate replies. However, they are not as complex as the AI chatbots. They can’t create their own text. Since they are not able to create text, they can’t answer questions they don’t have answers to.
On the other hand, we have artificial intelligence (AI). All chatbots based on AI technology have the ability to form their own responses. Moreover, they can learn from past experiences. However, AI chatbots need access to a large pool of data in the beginning. Moreover, sometimes, they can’t form longer sentences that sound natural.
Chatbots Outside of Business
Chatbots have numerous uses in everyday life. You can use chatbots to form travel plans, cancel meetings based on weather reports, or get quick answers to certain questions. They can manage the schedule of a busy C-level executive, sort emails by priority, and more. The most popular form of chatbots is virtual assistants. Siri, Alexa, and Cortana are all chatbots. However, that’s only the beginning.
Businesses are using chatbots to replace the cost of labor of customer support or message-based marketing.
Chatbots for Your Business
Now let’s take a look at how you can use chatbots for marketing. More importantly, how they can make you more money. Their main goal is to give customer support.
Using a chatbot for all customer relations is a great way to save money and time. You don’t have ongoing training and labor costs… and what’s more, a single chatbot software can interact with thousands of customers at the same time.
More and more consumers are using messengers and text-based services. In fact, they often insist on this option — many would rather bypass talking to a human altogether. Companies with a live chat feature platform have measurably improved their overall customer satisfaction score.
By 2020, it’s estimated that 80% of businesses will be using a chatbot in their everyday operations. In fact, there are uses for chatbots in almost every industry.
Messengers and chats have become popular recently because they are really easy to use. More people are using chats to talk with their favorite brands and companies. They can leave reviews, or ask about new products or upcoming sales. Additionally, you can use their responses to help with data collection.
Replacing Traditional Apps
A few years ago, most companies used apps to connect with their clients. However, the market became overcrowded with apps, and now customers want an even easier way to connect with your customer service reps or support. They increasingly choose to engage with chatbots whenever possible.
Data Collection and Analysis
Predicting your clients’ needs is key to a successful business. Now you might be wondering, “How am I supposed to know what my customers want before they do?” The answer is — data collection and analysis.
Using chatbots to request surveys or certain responses empowers you to collect more data. Thus, you will be able to predict the customers’ needs.
Marketing to a New Generation
Younger consumers will often refuse to call customer services on the phone entirely. To attract them, offer engaging platforms. Millennials like chatbots so much more than traditional customer service.
You can also use chatbots to help your customers make a decision about what to buy. While millennials do spend like crazy, they can be pretty indecisive. If your bot helps them decide what to buy, that will probably make them want to spend even more.
How to Use Chatbots for Marketing Purposes
Now you’ve learned about all of the benefits of having a chatbot. Let’s see how they can help you start selling things and making money.
1. Setting a Goal
Just as you set goals for your company, you need to set them for your chatbot. Ask yourself, “What am I going to use it for?” Do you need it to respond to customer questions or as a campaign ad? Each of these uses requires a different chatbot. A good development team will help flesh out your needs and get exactly the perfect bot.
2. Matching the Tone to the Message
Try giving your bot some personality, make them funny. After all, nobody wants their robots to sound too robotic or too “corporate.” A good marketing practice is to use everyday language, not necessarily to trick customers into thinking they’re talking to a human, but to make them feel more comfortable.
3. Creating an Interactive Platform
As you’ve probably noticed, more and more websites are offering live chat features now. Scrolling aimlessly on a website is a thing of the past. Again, if you introduce live chats, more customers will want to interact with you.
Moreover, you can use the chat to promote new products, get feedback from customers, and optimize the experience.
Staying on the phone for hours with customer support will soon be a thing of the past. By using chatbots for marketing purposes, you can grow your business more quickly. Additionally, they can boost your sales and promote your product. They will also cut down the cost of customer services.
Big and small businesses can benefit from chatbots. They give your customer a personalized experience, collect and analyze their data, and help reduce customer support time.
More importantly, you will be able to predict your client’s next purchase. You can use chatbots for marketing development, research, or customer support. So what are you waiting for?