What are messenger bots?
They make customer interactions with your business quicker, easier and more efficient because the customer no longer has to download and open a separate app, make an email inquiry or phone call to find out more about your product or service. They can simply chat in real time with your messenger bot, which uses natural language to respond to their queries. An example of a messenger bot is the ever-popular Siri, which is featured on Apple’s iPhone.
There are more than 11,000 messenger bots already out there providing information and services for a wide range of businesses. Facebook Messenger users can send a text to a bot to get the weather, order an uber, book a hotel room, or buy a pair of jeans.
More and more businesses are choosing to develop messenger bots instead of apps because bots enable them to streamline their sales process while increasing the effectiveness of their marketing efforts. Bots accomplish this by automating simple transactions while collecting and learning from this customer data.
Why does my business need a messenger bot?
Messenger bots are the future. Over 65% of Americans use social media and recent studies show that these users now spend the majority of their time within messaging apps.
The big tech players such as Facebook, Microsoft, and Skype, along with savvy businesses, understand that it’s no longer enough to build a mobile application that brings the user to you – you have to go to them, and operate within their favorite places such as chat apps like Facebook Messenger – if you want to drive engagement and increase sales.
Your messenger bot will be specially designed to fit your business’ needs. It will tell your customers everything they want to know about your product or service in real time. Your messenger bot will have many more capabilities than just answering FAQs. Here are some other ways in which bots can help you reach your target:
- Recommending new products
- Performing simple transactions
- Conducting customer surveys
The beauty of messenger bots is that they act as a personal assistant for your customer AND your marketing team.
The increased automation makes your business more productive by reducing your marketing costs. You’ll need fewer resources to maintain your social media presence as the majority of inquiries can be fielded by the bot. While it’s unlikely that bots will completely replace your customer service team (some interactions require a more human touch), it’s becoming harder and harder for customers to tell humans and bots apart.
Another benefit is that bots are very good at identifying other bots and can help your customer service and marketing teams hone in on legitimate questions and complaints and address them in a timely manner.
How do messenger bots work?
To get into the messenger bot scene, you only need one bot. That bot will then operate on any platform that carries Facebook Messenger – across iOs, Android, and the web. Employing an experienced messenger bot developer will help ensure that your bot is a success and that its interactions are as ‘human’ as possible. You get to define the message templates, including text, images, and call to action bubbles based on your knowledge of your customer base.
You can train your bot by feeding it questions and responses. The more interaction it has with your customers, the more enhanced their experience will be, as it is able to learn and adapt to incoming data. Because messenger bots rely on Application Programming Interfaces (APIs), they don’t take much time to set up, however perfecting the responses of your bot can take time and dedication. Bringing in third party expertise in the early stages helps to create a bot that functions smoothly from the outset, ensuring that your customers won’t be scared off by a negative interaction.
When building a messenger bot, make sure you understand what ongoing maintenance and resources are required. Do you want a hybrid model that integrates automated and human responses? Are you looking for a fully automated solution that redirects the more complex inquiries to a manual channel? An experienced bot developer will be able to advise you on the best setup for your business requirements.
Create a messenger bot for your business
Adding Facebook chat bots to your marketing toolkit can have valuable implications for your company and its profitability. With marketing budgets shrinking and companies being asked to do more with less, automating your efforts has never been more important. If you are not yet incorporating Facebook bots into your marketing efforts, now is the time to take a look.