Chatbots For Mental Health

Chatbots have proven to be efficient when it comes to addressing any business related job roles. But their capabilities are so much. Incorporating bots in business activities is just the beginning. They have great potential to be the future of therapy and create awareness about mental health.

Numerous therapy chatbots have already been launched. But there’s still a long way to go to achieve the fullest potential.

Here are a couple of reasons why Chatbots are a great way to address mental health problems –

Availability

Although, there are numerous psychologists and doctors who are available to help people with their mental needs, they’re not available 24×7. Most of the time, you can meet them only after you schedule an appointment. There is a huge mismatch when it comes to availability. Bots are readily available. They might be able to help the person out during their vulnerable times or alert the necessary authorities if its a serious situation.

Anonymity

People are often not comfortable with discussing their personal problems or issues with another person, even if its a qualified medical and health professional. And the truth is, it takes the professionals a certain amount of time to break down the patient’s walls and to gain their trust. But with chatbots, users feel secure about the anonymity. They do not think that they’re being judged about their problems. They do not feel any apprehensions while talking to a bot.

Cost Efficient

Visiting a mental health professional can be a very expensive process. And not everyone can afford to spend such money. Bots can be helpful because they are extremely economical. The cost to develop and optimize a bot is still minimal compared to the amount needed to visit a doctor regularly. And this is one of the reasons why people prefer talking to a chatbot.

Although, bots show great potential in the field of therapy and mental health, they are not the end game. However, they can act as first-line-tools and guide people into getting the proper help they need.

Do you have any other thoughts about chatbots in therapy? Let us know what you think!

How Can Non-profits Benefit From a Chatbot

Chatbots are the current trending feature that companies and businesses are going gaga over! Ever since Facebook allowed companies to program Chatbots in their messenger, there has been a steady rise in AI technology on Facebook. Everybody wanted to join and be a part of the NEXT BIG THING. Chatbots would be able to answer questions immediately, and allow the people to concentrate on bigger things.

Bots have slowly creeped their way into different industries and businesses. And believe it or not, NGOs and Non-profits can actually benefit from bots.

Here’s how chatbots can be a great asset for your non-profit –

Answer basic queries on time everytime!

It is no surprise that a NGO page on FB will be getting loads of questions from the users like, “How can I volunteer”, “How can I donate money for this cause”, “When is your next event happening”. If only there was a system that could ask answer these monotonous questions so you didn’t have to. Chatbots can help do this for you. And these queries could be answered instantly regardless of what time they come in.

Gathering a community

A non-profit’s success is all about the donors, volunteers working towards a common cause. It is about bringing them together and forming a strong community. Chatbots can help make this happen. They can send out regular alerts to users based on previous communications. The alerts can be about new events, updates or anything that might help the non-profit to make their community stronger.

Fundraising

This is one of the core activities for any NGO. They need to actively raise funds to keep move their cause forward. Instead of directly asking users to donate some money, the bot can help share stories, experiences and related data that can motivate the user to actually do something for the cause. It reduces the manual effort but still gets the job done.

Moreover, bots can help gather data based on their interactions. It can provide useful insights regarding the audience and help funnel the non-profit’s to the right audience.

Do you have any other reasons as to how bots can help a non-profit? Let us know in the comments below!

3 Easy Tips to Improve your Chatbot UX

Building a chatbot has become considerably easy with the introduction of different softwares, app and chatbot development tools. But with the introduction of such softwares, businesses pay attention to just the development of the bot and forget to constantly improve it. That’s why most of the bots fail.

Building a bot is just the first step. The UX and UI of the bot is of utmost importance. The bot must be easy to talk to and interact with. If this is missing, then your bot is no longer useful to the user.

Ensure all buttons are functional

Any normal conversation with a bot involves the user clicking on different buttons to provide answers. So the buttons must be thoroughly tested to ensure that it is responsive at all points of the conversation. Sometimes, the user would come back to the conversation and try to employ the old buttons instead of starting a conversation from the scratch. If the buttons aren’t responsive, you are losing out on valuable customers.

Increase wait time to allow users to read the messages

This is a flaw that most of the chatbots suffer from. Most bots continually spam the user with multiple texts at a time. This does not give the user any time to read every message as the new messages will move the text that the user is already reading. This leads to poor user experience. Therefore, it is advised to have some wait time in the middle before the bot sends out another message.

Try to re-engage after end of conversation

The bots must be equipped to re-engage the user with some valuable information after the end of conversation to ensure future engagement. But there is a fine line between trying to engage with the user and spamming the user. ONLY message the user if you have something that the user would find useful. Otherwise, you might actually end up hindering the performance of your bot.

Building a successful chatbot is a constant journey. There is something new to learn everyday. Trying to incorporate new trends and learnings is the way to instill growth in your chatbot.

Don’t Let Your Chatbot Commit These 4 Mistakes

It has been a while since the rise of Chatbots and there is no doubt that these bots have proven to be incredibly helpful to both the brand and the user. It minimizes effort and maximises the benefit. It also serves as a great marketing tool for the brands.

But with the the rise of a new feature also comes a rise in the errors and mistakes made. The story doesn’t end after the development of a chatbot. Businesses make plenty of mistakes when it comes to revising the functionalities and conversational abilities of a bot.

Here are some common mistakes that your bot must definitely stay away from –

Lack of focus

Bots are developed as a solution to a problem. It is important to identify the principal problem and ensure that the bots are working towards that. Make sure that your bot is not trying to do a hundred tasks at once. It may lose focus and in the end, you will be unable to solve your primary problem.

Spamming an abandoned conversation

This is one of the biggest mistakes committed by the bots. Users constantly complain of getting spam messages from the bot even after the conversation has ended. It is worse if the bot continues to spam the user even after it was unable to effectively help with the user’s query. Alternatively, the bot can send a message or two after the conversation if it contains some valuable information that the user will appreciate.

Inability to answer the question

This is another good reason as to why your bots are not that successful. It simply does not add any value for the user. The main reason why bots where set up in the first place was because they could respond to the users’ queries instantly. If its unable to find an answer for the question, it must let the user know about it instead of repeatedly dodging the question or providing irrelevant answers. It only makes the user more annoyed. It could provide the user with an email ID or a helpline number incase the question is out of scope from the bot’s abilities.

Asking repeated questions

The bot must be developed in such a way that it is able to store information of previous engagements with the user. It becomes a mundane task for the user if they have to provide their contact information or account details every time they communicate with a bot. Therefore, it is important to integrate your chatbot with user information data to simplify the process for the user.

Why do Millennials love Chatbots?

It is 2018 and technology is at its peak! Well, technology and social media. And who is the biggest user of both of these? You guessed it right, it’s the millennials!

It is believed that, by 2020, almost 85% of consumer interactions with businesses will be with bots or through self-servicing. Research states that 60% of millennials have interacted with a chatbot and 70% of users have had a positive experience with a bot. And the users who haven’t tried are also excited to interact with a bot.

Companies have realised that chatbots are a goldmine with millennials and brands like Sephora, Dominos and Starbucks have already created their very own chatbot that are highly popular amongst millennials.

So, what is it about chatbots that makes them so irresistible to the millennials? Well, you’re about to find out.

Feeds into their need for instant gratification

If there’s one thing that all millennials hate, it is waiting. They want instantaneous replies and feedback. And this is one of the major reasons that they love chatbots. Their queries are attended to in a jiffy! Plus, with the improvement in chatbot technologies, bots are improving their conversational abilities to become more humanized and friendly. Millennials may not receive the same instant responses while interacting with a human. This is why, they are more prone to communicate with bots instead of other customer servicing channels.

Keeping up with the latest technology

Millennials love staying ahead of the curve. Be it fashion, technology or music. They all want to be a part of the next big thing. They loved drones and hover boards and they’ve also started to love chatbots. It is the newest addition to social media channels. They’re all happy to experiment with the latest technological revelation.

Convenience is everything

Millennials take their smartphone everywhere, they’re always connected to the different social media platforms. Brands need not take any effort to educate these millennials about these platforms. All they have to do is be present on the platforms that their TG frequent the most. The convenience of the chatbots is what makes millennials use them again and again.

How to effectively market your Messenger Bot

Chatbots have been around for a while now and there have been hits and misses since its inception. We’ve cracked the mysteries on what makes a bot successful and the tips to create a perfect bot. And since brands have realized the true potential of bots, they all have incorporated it in some aspect of their business.

Unfortunately, the crowding of bots on the internet have made it difficult for every single chatbot to stand out. This brings us to marketing. How can a business effectively promote their messenger bot and not let it get lost in the crowd?

Well, we’ve got just the right tips to ensure all your existing and potential customers are aware of this feature.

Increase the visibility of your bot

The first step to promote your bot is identification. All your development efforts are baseless if users cannot easily discover your bot. There are different steps to go about this.

  • Create messenger QR codes and place them at your store, events, office or even upload them online on your social media handles and website. This will allow the user to quickly scan the code and get in touch with your business
  • Add a “Message Us” button on your Facebook page
  • Place a “Message” button on your website too. The facebook message plug-in can be embedded onto the website and it can help direct the user to your messenger bot if they have any queries. It also helps push all your efforts to one uniform location
  • Give your bot an identity and a username so people can easily type in the name of your chatbot and locate it

It’s all about the content

Now that we’ve covered visibility and brought the user to your chatbot, it is important that the bot engages and assists the user effectively as possible. To achieve this, it is important to understand the reasons behind creating a chatbot and what makes your chatbot unique.

It is imperative to convey information about your bot, its latest updates and features to ensure top of the mind recall and also to maintain the interest of your audience. This will also provide room for user reviews and feedback to help fine tune your bot’s performance. Your bot can be made more fun and interesting by incorporating GIFs, audio and video files.But do note that your updates about the bot do not become spammy for the users.

With the right balance of the above mentioned tips, you are surely on the right path to Chatbot success!

Why Do Fashion And Beauty Brands Bet On Chatbots?

Despite criticism from companies that have failed to integrate Bots into their marketing strategy, the fashion and beauty industries are still adept at Chatbot. More and more brands adopt them in their marketing strategy.

The question is whether this investment in Bots is paying off, and if so, why?

This article tells us why Chatbots are a popular and essential tool for ready-to-wear and beauty brands.

Try before you buy

Many brands have launched their Chatbot in the hope that one day users will naturally interact with them (especially on Facebook). Unfortunately, more than one example proves that it was not enough to encourage customers to create a real relationship with the company. They have failed to create added value for their customers.

For ready-to-wear and beauty brands, it’s different. Indeed, Chatbots can solve the number 1 obstacle of e-commerce: try the product before buying it. This is particularly problematic for cosmetic brands. Customers can not, for example, test the color of their foundation before ordering it.

By incorporating AR in ChatBots, brands are now able to find the right shade of lipstick or foundation just from a photo.

Estee Lauder is using this new technology to perfection. The brand makes it possible to test the different shades of lipstick virtually. The customers have the same service as in the store, but at home. This option encourages consumers to go to the act of purchase.

A stylist online

For ready-to-wear brands, the ability to “try before you buy” is limited. Even with the ARs, trying on clothes virtually remains difficult. However, fashion companies have found a system to attract consumers: personalized advice on style.

This means that brands can combine basic customer service with personalized recommendations. This process aims to reproduce the experience that the consumer would live in the store.

There are of course limits to this ChatBot. The success of this technology depends largely on its progress. The best brands will be those that will come to customize the tips. To illustrate this, we can take Levi’s, which asks users questions about their size, preferred model, the fit they want, and so on. to suggest the jeans that will fit them perfectly.

Another undeniable advantage of the brand is that it uses True Fit technology. It is designed to increase the chances of providing the perfect model to customers. This tool can significantly reduce the return rate.

In addition to providing useful tips, the Chatbot saves the user time, thus avoiding the need to browse the site for hours, without finding the product that suits him.

The question we can ask is: is it really important that the bot clearly has nothing human? Not really – indeed, users do not dwell on this point if the Bot brings a real added value.

Better integration

One of the biggest obstacles to Chatbots success is that many consumers do not know they exist. Many brands have failed in promoting their robots. Users discover these ChatBots when they try to communicate with the company.

However, recently, Facebook has launched a new plug-in that allows businesses to integrate Messenger into their own websites. This allows users to interact with Chatbot on mobile, desktop and tablet devices.

So, will other brands (other than ready-to-wear and beauty) start investing in Chatbots? Certainly. With the advantages mentioned above such as the integration and customization of the RA, it is clear that some industries have every interest in investing in this tool.

How can Chatbots help in E-Commerce?

It is no surprise that the internet and social media have taken over every aspect of life and everything is available to the user at the comfort of their homes. The number of users making purchasing from an e-commerce store has been steadily increasing over the years. Almost 80% of online purchases is made from a mobile device. So the online stores must ensure that they provide a seamless shopping experience to their customers.

This is where the chatbots would be of great help to them. The best part is that, chatbots do not require you to install a specific app, it is inbuilt within the principal store app or within the social media channel.

How can chatbots help boost e-commerce businesses

Build buzz

Chatbots are perfect to build a buzz around latest products, offers, discounts and sales. They help communicate such information to users on social. This is an ideal way to get the word out there without appearing spammy. Users would appreciate the personalized touch. This would encourage them to at least visit the website.

Instant customer service

Customers want instant answers to their questions, especially when it comes to addressing grievances and purchase queries. But the customer service team cannot be available 24×7. In this case, incorporating chatbots ensures that these queries are addressed instantly. This enables the user to have a smooth online shopping experience.

Personalization

Over and above the usual benefits, one of the biggest pros of incorporating a chatbot is personalization. Customers want to feel like the brand understands them and their needs. This aspect is key to brand loyalty. With AI, it is now possible for bots to grow and learn from every interaction. This empowers the bots to provide personalized solutions to the users based on their interests/purchase behaviour & previous interactions.

4 ways Chatbots can help Hotels

As the technological innovations get better, businesses have to keep evolving to hold their spot in the race for user attention. 2017 witnessed an explosion of chatbots dominating multiple industries at the same time. Chatbots are a perfect addition for businesses that are heavy on conversation with consumers like hotels.

The core of every hotel’s success depends on the quality of service provided. With the surge of internet and smartphones, users want to know all there is to know about a hotel from the comfort of their homes. So, hotels have to constantly innovate themselves to attract more bookings.

Here are some of the ways a chatbot can prove to be an useful asset for Hotels –

Responding to enquiries and FAQs

This is the first step involved when it comes to a hotel booking. Users want information about the hotel, right from its location and amenities to the additional recreational facilities provided. They want to know details about the types of rooms available, tariff, etc. Bots can help address these queries instantly.

Assist in bookings

This is one of the key tasks for a hotel. A lot of resources are employed to ensure that there is a smooth transition for customers from enquiry to booking. Phone reservations have become a thing of the past, customers now want to book rooms through online communication. This is where bots can be highly useful. Customers can instantly confirm their reservations with the hotel. This simplifies the effort taken by both parties i.e the hotel and the customer.

Receive guest feedback

There is always scope for improvement when it comes to providing quality service to guests. Hotels must pay a lot of attention to the feedback and comments from guests. Afterall, they’re the ones keeping the business afloat. Bots can be an efficient medium through which guests can give feedback about their stay. Their responses can be connected to relevant teams to ensure that suitable action is taken

Alerts about offers & discounts

Bots can also communicate about the available offers/discounts/promotions when a user initiates a new chat or even alert users who’ve already interacted with the bot. This helps the bot stay in touch with the customer database of the hotel and create awareness about offers that would result in more bookings for the hotel

Busting the common Chatbot myths

Chatbots are currently experiencing a peak in their growth. More business are companies are joining the AI bandwagon. This technology has been developed, customized and innovated to suit the needs of different businesses in multiple industries. But there are still some common misconceptions surrounding chatbots and we’re here to bust these myths once and for all!

Myth 1 – Chatbots are only for big businesses

This is one of the most common misconceptions when it comes to chatbots. Yes, it is true that some of the biggest brands in different industries have made use of this technology to achieve big results,but, it is not restricted to the elitist brands. Chatbots can be developed for your business, irrespective of the size. And you need not worry about the costs of the chatbots being super high. You can actually develop a cost-effective chatbot for your business without compromising on its quality.

Myth 2 – Chatbots are only used for Customer Service

Most people believe the biggest function of the bots is to address customer queries when the employee is unavailable. But in reality, the potential of these bots is so much more! They can used in various functions like Sales, Accounting, Communications and many more.

Myth 3 – Chatbots lack human touch

This would be the biggest myth that surrounds chatbots. People believe that Chatbots can only offer robotic and repetitive replies to questions. But that is not true.  Chatbots can be built to constantly evolve and learn from every interaction they have. It generates useful insights from every conversation it has. Bots are even being utilized for counselling. So the matter of personalised touch purely depends upon how effectively your bot is built.

Myth 4 – Chatbots will lead to unemployment

Chatbots are developed to make the jobs easier for people, not to completely eliminate them in the process. Even though these bots can be built to perform multiple tasks effectively, its benefits pose a limit. Certain activities need to pass through a human.

 

With these busted myths, you can surely understand what bots can and cannot do. In this day and age where technology dominates every aspect of your life, bots are the perfect addition to grow your business to the next level.