Facebook to Launch Group Chatbots on Messenger

Over the past year, we have seen a meteoric rise in the number of Chatbots dominating the conversational user interface with multiple businesses jumping in the bandwagon to interact with their customers and prospects using Chatbots. From travel bookings to ordering a pizza, Chatbots have been capturing the world by a storm with the amount of potential it has to disseminate information in the touch of a button. These Chatbots act as your virtual assistant and provide you information instantaneously in the comfort of your messaging applications.

Recently, there have been several rumours on what’s in store for Chatbots on Facebook Messenger. According to Techcrunch, Facebook in their next conference will be announcing the launch of group Chatbots to Messenger and is in talks with various Chatbot developers on the launch. These group Chatbots can be added to group conversations to carry out various tasks and have a conversation collectively with a group.

This is quite an interesting update for businesses and can give them the headstart to develop Chabots that can serve multiple users at the same time.  For example, a group of basketball fans can add a Basketball Chatbot to their conversation and be updated on the news and score in real time through the Bot.

Group travel plans could also be arranged and paid for by all the members of the group using a travel Chabot and dinner reservations for the group can also be quicky made using a group Chatbot.

This also opens the door for entertainment bots and big entertainment giants could also make it possible for a group to watch content in the comfort of their Facebook Messenger. Movie nights with long distance friends could also be possible with a Movie Chatbot on Facebook Messenger.

A group Chatbot on Messenger also allows businesses to disseminate their information to more number of people and is expected to give rise to a more viral growth of Chatbots in the community.

Whether it is a group that loves hourly sports updates or random hourly giraffe facts to mildly annoy their friends, the potential for interaction with group Chatbots makes it a much more enjoyable and immersive experience for Messenger.

While Facebook has not confirmed these rumours, we can only wait till the next conference to find out for certain if they are making an entry into the Chatbot world.

WeChat And The Origin Of Chatbots

Recently, there has been a lot of talk about ChatBots that are increasingly replacing applications. It’s time to have a lookback at how the ChatBots phenomenon started.

This phenomenon of ChatBots started in China with WeChat. What is surprising is that WeChat has a bot platform for 4 years now! We’re talking about Facebook Messenger bots, Slack bots but WeChat started the gear! Which means that we already have matter on the subject and that we can already know what mistakes not to commit.

But how were ChatBots born in China? In China, social media is much better integrated into consumer shopping experiences.

Compared to Europe or the United States, the Chinese consumer’s psychology is peculiar. Chinese consumers are wary of the products manufactured in their country because of the various scandals that have erupted in recent years about safety standards. Beware, the Chinese consumer feels reassured when asking questions to other consumers or the manufacturer directly, his intention to buy is therefore influenced by the answers he will get.

It is from these thousands of consumers, who need to ask questions to be reassured, that were born the ChatBots in China, well before those developed by Facebook and others.

WeChat ChatBots

Since the launch of the application in 2009, WeChat has conquered many users. Even if we leave the bots aside, WeChat is a great social network.

In the third quarter of 2016, WeChat had more than 705 million users. In China, more than 70% of smartphone holders use WeChat. This can be compared to the penetration rate of 67% of Facebook for US Internet users.

Thanks to its platform, WeChat has made easy the development of ChatBots simple and not very intelligent. ChatBots have become one of the preferred means of customer service, because they have reduced the time spent interacting online with consumers. However, this does not mean that you can not develop a smart bot on WeChat.

Chumen Wenwen, a company founded in 2012 by a former Google employee, has built a very sophisticated bot that runs on WeChat and other spaces. The company has combined voice recognition, AI and WeChat platform in a package that provides information to users. By connecting to third-party APIs, the app can answer questions about what’s around you, including movies, restaurants, and more. Even before creating their own website, some entrepreneurs started by creating their WeChat account.

Types of ChatBots on WeChat

There are two types of ChatBots accounts; There are subscription accounts and service accounts. These two types of accounts have been launched as a ChatBot but have been modified to rely less on artificial intelligence. The main users of subscription accounts are content publishers, they automatically receive, once a day, the latest published articles. These users click on an item to be viewed in a built-in WeChat browser. This type of account is for people who want to follow a trademark or influence on WeChat.

For companies, this creates a gold mine of data such as the number of users who have seen this or that article. From these data, companies and brands can then target their audience for a certain type of content. Through A / B testing, marketers can identify effective ways to structure their content and in what format to publish it.

Customer services for brands and companies subscribing to WeChat use service accounts to interact with their customers via the application. Fashion brands, airlines, restaurants, hotels or e-shops often use ChatBots for their online interactions.

On WeChat service accounts, all types of messages (information on latest promotions and events, location of nearest restaurants, updates on airline tickets) can be sent to users. In addition to the simple interactions of subscription accounts, consumers can find themselves engaged in more complex conversations with bots. Nevertheless, developers and brands recognize that at the moment, their robots are unable to handle all types of customer requests. Therefore, these accounts must be supported by employees.

How do ChatBots work?

The WeChat bot platform is simple. WeChat robots work by identifying keywords in text strings and using manually coded rules for how to answer a question. Bots also work with automatic learning, meaning that the more users interact with brands and companies via ChatBots, the more intelligent ChatBots become and learn to understand user requests.

Although robots learn to understand these requests, they continue to send pre-made replies. Unfortunately, they can not yet give very complex answers to specific questions. The bots of brands and companies on WeChat are basically there to provide a simple customer service but also to entertain the users.

What is the future of WeChat ChatBots?

WeChat is installed on most smartphones in China, and the Chinese are completely immersed in a world of virtual communication and technological evolution. With each new version, the functionality of the WeChat application improves and the ChatBots transform the interactions with the consumers, the interactions are thus more and more sophisticated.

WeChat users understand that they can not only have a nice chat with ChatBots, but they can also get valuable advice from these bots. Companies that have official accounts on WeChat know that ChatBots help them to extend their customer service teams more efficiently and allow them to respond to a greater number of requests, which corresponds very well to their business models.

In the near future, for consumers, ChatBots will no longer be a novelty and will no longer be the object of entertainment but will rather be an omnipresence. For businesses, ChatBots will be an integral part of their business.

However, as on Facebook Messenger and other Western platforms, in most cases, WeChat robots do not use a true conversational strategy. WeChat also has buttons that allow users to interact without too much chat. For now, the race is still open, to see who can develop a ChatBot that is more than a website on Facebook Messenger Conversation UI.

Chatbots for the Corporate World

The progress of artificial intelligence combined with various messaging applications, fuel the development of ChatBots that can perform different types of tasks such as scheduling a meeting or help users to buy a new gadget. The bot revolution is still in its initial phase, but the enthusiasm of customers and companies is felt. Let’s take a look at the existing ChatBots that can already be used by companies.

Bots are clearly one of the biggest social media trends to watch for, especially those built within email applications. What do these Bots do? They are a of tool to which you can ask a question and which will answer you accordingly.

The trend of automatically speaking robots in e-mail applications has created the conversational economy. They allow you to do many more things than mobile apps, they also come in handy since you do not need to download a different application each time and use them through a chat interface.

What should we expect?

Technology analysts have predicted that the Bot Stores will be the biggest entrants after the Facebook Messenger and the biggest advance since the rise of the App Stores. For example, Telegram, an email application with more than 100 million active users, has launched a bot store with many features. You can find bots in apps that allow you to play games, communicate or buy online. Bots are the future of how we communicate, buy, travel. We can even predict that the bots will become the new websites.

The year 2016 marked the beginning of the use of ChatBots. It turns out that messaging platforms are actually the most used applications for smartphones. By 2015, more than 1.5 billion people had used chat applications. In addition, almost 70% of all applications use from just 200 applications. This shows that most applications are not used. Many developers think it will be much easier to get users to chat with ChatBots than to download apps, connect to them, learn how to use them. Now let’s see how bots can be used by businesses.

Bots significantly reduce the number of applications on your phone. For example, you no longer need to have the Uber application on your phone, you can now send a simple message to Uber with “pick me up from this destination” etc.

What is a Business Bot?

This is essentially a text service that allows users to perform tasks such as scheduling a meeting, ordering a product, booking a flight, via text. If you are an e-commerce company, a company or a brand and you do not consider using bots as one of your strategies, you definitely need to rethink your strategy in order to be competitive in the market .

Here are some examples of Business ChatBots that are gaining ground:

KUDI:

 

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KUDI is a ChatBot that allows you to pay bills and make transfers via e-mail. It currently exists in Facebook Messenger and will soon be available in Skype. It helps users to transfer money, to buy credit for their phone, to pay bills. More info: https://kudi.ai

MY STARBUCKS BARISTA:

 

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Starbucks recently launched a ChatBot that is activated vocally. It allows customers to place orders while talking. The functionalities of this bot also allow to pay the orders. More information: http://money.cnn.com/2017/01/30/technology/starbucks-mobile-app/

Currently, there are five big players in the bots market: Facebook, Google, Amazon, Apple and Microsoft. ChatBots will soon be ubiquitous in our way of acting and communicating. This opens doors and many opportunities for developers in building ChatBots and aiding to the Bot Revolution on Messaging Applications.

5 Ways the Facebook Messenger Update Can Affect Chatbots

Facebook has recently announced new updates on Messenger, the changes affect not only the application itself but also the algorithm that developers are primarily concerned with creating their chatbots on the platform. Facebook has launched these recent changes as new ways for users to discover, share and engage with the community.

What does this mean for Chatbots? Let’s take a look at the important updates and what they do:

  1. A complete redefinition of the already existing menu
  2.  New tools that it easier for users to share a Chatbot
  3. Improvement in purchasing conversions
  4. Better statistical data
  5. New methods to improve e-commerce solutions

Changes to the menu have caused many debates in the developer community, especially the new feature that allows the developer to disable free data by typing and limiting user-bot interactions via menus or buttons.This raises a known problem that developers and users have experienced in the past:

One of the primary drawbacks to Facebook bots is the fact that there are often misunderstandings on how to start the conversation. The chat directory on Messenger was not available before and now it only turns out once you have started the conversation in the application. And once it has been added it’s not always very clear to understand how the bot starts to talk and how the user can navigate back and forth inside the bot and sections.

The new feature update is on the same page as the standard “start” button but now allow developers to solve this problem and create a simple messenger experience without any conversational potential. Which brings us to a big question: Can we still call it a chatbot if we can not have a conversation?

The primary reason behind this issue is the behaviour of brands. Brands have been trying to sell products or build brands targeting the generation of “chatters” or “Millennials” and they have tried to create chatbots more and more intelligent in order to keep the conversation flowing with users. The result is a remoteness from the very idea as these brands continue to see Messenger merely as a primary means of reaching their consumers and not as a means of engaging with them in a relevant way.

However, there is no single opinion on the development of chatbots and the reactions to Facebook’s announcement have been mixed between the “it’s great” and the “that ruins the whole concept”.

This depends on what type of bots the business wants to develop. If you want to create something with a transnational nature that should support an easy and fast navigation and serve consumers in a tactical manner, then the new menus will be very useful to turn off unnecessary text and help set up a good experience for the user. On the other hand, if your bot has to handle complex situations and it is difficult for the bot to cope with a given situation, then it may be worthwhile to mix traditional conversation features with additional menus and buttons.

The new menu proposed by Facebook Messenger can be found here.

Bot developers have always been interested in the question of how to manage an interaction model that would function as an intermediary for consumers. While initially the expectations were to go to a natural language and have a simple interaction, it is now time to combine different elements in the same interface of a native messaging application, such as carousels, Graphics and buttons combined with text. This will become the most effective way to use chatbots.

In conclusion, the main goal is to provide billions of Facebook Messenger users with solutions they already enjoy with a well-designed chatbot that provides an effecient conversational experience.

Men Vs. Women: Who Engages More With Chatbots ?

In order to be informed before you start creating a chatbot, it is important to know a little more about the profile and practices of the users of this tool! Let’s take a look at the different relationships between chatbots and men vs. chatbots and women.

Who uses Chatbots the most?

On average, 63% of the users of chatbots are men and 28% are women with 9% still unknown or undetected. Men tend to be more engaged than women in terms of sessions per user per month. On an average, they have about 50% more sessions. However, women write more messages per session, about 12% more messages per session.

The Usage of Bots

Regarding the number of bots used by men and women, the majority use only one bot. 14% of men use more than one bots compared to 10.6% women.

A Picture Speaks a Thousand Words

By looking at the images sent to bots on Facebook Messenger, we can see a prominent difference between men and women.

Using the Amazon API to detect these images we can see that both men and women send selfies to the bots. Women tend to send a little more than men. The keywords “person”, “human” and “portrait” appear in the selfies which seems logical. Men take a magnitude of photos of cars, motorcycles and the keyword “car” returns regularly.

Another element that we can see by studying the images sent to Chatbots is people tend to send the Chatbot risqué photos. Men and women been sending these images to bots to see how the latter react. About 90% of these photos sent to Chatbots come from men.

Fortunately, the total percentage of sending these kind of pictures is low with only 2.5% of the images sent and only 6% of the chatbots are concerned by this kind of images. What is interesting is that even if the percentage of users performing this kind of practices is relatively low, when someone sends compromising photos, they send a lot! On average, the same image is sent 5 times, compared to only once for a normal picture. In fact, users can even send the same image more than a hundred times! Apparently, when you enjoy sending compromising photos, you cannot stop!

How do we like bots?

It’s time to see how men and women perceive Chatbots. On average, for each bot, the feelings experienced by men and women are almost similar, that is, they feel the same (whether positive or negative) sentiment while speaking to a chatbot.

For example, during the Valentine’s Day, when love was in the air, it was found that many users expressed their love to the Chatbots they use. This phenomenon has been noticeable in more women than men!

Depending on the target of your market, it is important to know their behaviors in a dialogue with a chatbot and these investigations prove that the bot must be trained in order to address the users in the right way. However, it is also essential to prepare your chatbots to react to comical situations such as sending particular photos and love notes!

The Most Common Chatbot Errors & How To Avoid Them

There will probably be a time when Bots will be able to flatter our egos and tell us what we want to hear but this day has not yet arrived.

Based on the latest debates on the subject, we find that assisted artificial intelligence of bots still has a little way to go before reaching the conversational and social skills required to converse with human intelligence . By taking a closer look at the phenomenon of robots, we find that it is easier to give them a human appearance than to provide them with the skills peculiar to humans.

This means that we will have to wait a little longer before we have a version of Samantha, from the movie “Her”, in real life!

The Rise of Chatbots:

There is no doubt that Chatbots have made enormous progress since their creation decades ago. You can meet them today in different forms and they are able to solve many tasks, like helping consumers via Slack or sometimes even casually flirting with Tinder users.

Many companies have realized the stakes of these chatbots and the potential they represent for a brand. Some experts even say that Chatbots will soon dethrone applications as they are ubiquitous, easy to use and essential in our daily actions.

These experts are certainly right. Technology giants such as Microsoft, Google, Amazon and Apple have already bet big on this artificial intelligence based on database and automatic learning to make the bot more human like. For many of these projects, Chatbots most often serve as a bridge between artificial intelligence algorithms and people who try to communicate with them. This is how meaningful dialogues can emerge, and therefore commercial transactions.

This is why the demand for the interfaces of conversations tends to increase, supported by rather revealing cases. From the point of view of technology leaders, large companies in the finance, toys, food, media and automotive industries, for example, can now actively use Chatbots to have meaningful discussions with their consumers.

Successful Bots

The benefits and success of an effective Chatbot are easy to see:

Scale: A single chatbot can handle thousands of conversations at the same time. This same bot can perform many tasks either in after-sales service or in terms of marketing actions, and this better than the appointed real agent team. This bot performs these tasks at a lower cost which increases the profitability of the company that chose to launch its bot in the long term.

Practicality: Chatbots promise an unprecedented level of practicality. This is justified when you see how many users use the “Assist” Chatbot to organize their applications to do daily tasks such as calling a taxi, booking a hotel, reserving a table, sending a gift to a loved one etc. . All these transactions have never been easier thanks to the Chatbot!

Customization: Chatbots can be programmed to build an organic personal profile for each consumer, allowing companies to deliver a truly personalized experience.

Versatility: Applications often have a specific purpose. Chatbots are known for their role as lawyers, doctors, stylists, caretakers, financial advisors, sports coaches, pets and even boyfriends.

Natural Interactions: “Chatter” is second nature to us and this makes our use of the Chatbot much more intuitive and easy than clicking on a multitude of buttons on a classic interface. In addition, the Z-generation, which represents the market of tomorrow, spends a lot of time on message applications, rather than on websites, which is a huge opportunity for companies that want to reach this target on email platforms .

When do Bots go wrong?

Even though Chatbots represent a strong interest in brands, some of them repeat the same thing over and over because of a huge lack of vocabulary and answers in their database. Others can not answer even a very simple question because their creator did not necessarily think of the fact that humans could ask stupid and unthinkable questions in a long time. And worse, some Chatbots fail even in their specialized field because they do not understand what consumers are asking.

A Know-it-all Chatbot

Do not try to create a chatbot that knows absolutely everything and everything people ask! Siri, for example, may possibly develop this ability but it is more interesting to specialize for a single specific purpose in order to engage your audience.

Solution: Define specific goals and identify the different cases your Chatbots might face. Do not try to solve problems that do not concern your bot. Instead, focus on a particular area and try to respond as effectively as possible to consumer expectations by keeping conversations in a comfort zone.

No Engagement Paths

The majority of chatbots used by companies still need human intervention to generate the best commitments. Never create a bot without first establishing a scaling string that corresponds to a map of the interactions defining different routes that your users can use during the conversation. All answers to questions or problems that may be raised in the conversation should be defined.

Solution: Make a summary of the different engagement paths so that your bot knows exactly what the scenarios may be. Make sub-categories so that your bot prepares for different scenarios and collect interesting data and possible consumer demands. It is necessary to build the knowledge of its bot in time and giving more time to the real agents to optimize the tasks.

Limited Linguistic Knowledge

This major issue can take form as the following:

  • Inability to answer unique, complex, contextual, personal and unusual questions.
  • The abusive use of familiar emoticons and expressions simply to appear human.
  • Answers to certain human linguistics, the use of sarcasm, humor or insults.

For example, some Bots do not know how to arrive at the correct answer because of a poor understanding of natural language and a weak ability to break down sentences that do not coincide with the pre-established Bot library.

Solution: We must first manage the expectations of users. If necessary, let your bot admit that it did not understand and that it does not know some term used. At the same time, train your chatbot to improve its conversational skills by creating a language database so that it can always communicate by improving from session to session.

Inconsistent or Non-Existent Personality

There is probably a very few set of people who would enjoy talking to a robot that acts like a robot. That’s why technology leaders strive to make their Chatbots as human-likeas possible and try to establish a real connection with their audience. However, abusing emoticons and familiar language does not always work!

Solution: Make sure to create a Bot that includes visual elements (symbols, avatars), vocabulary, a certain tone, a personality in its own right that will make sense for your consumer target. After all, your Chatbot must represent the ambassador of your brand just as much as the human who creates or sells your product / service.

Lack of Consistency with your Company’s Business Systems

A Chatbot that has no clue about the company it is supposed to represent or the target to which it is supposed to address is a real disadvantage. Consumers want to optimize their time. As with after-sales service with real agents, consumers may lose patience quickly if your Bot constantly asks for their account credentials or if they are unaware of their purchases or their previous interactions with the company.

Solution: Allow chatbot to access relevant consumer databases, biographies, contact information with key people in your company, media and marketing information, brand CRM data etc that will allow it to generate much more value.

Neglected security and privacy

Certain Twitter users for example like to give a lot of false information that can destroy the brand’s reputation. Since your Chatbot represents your brand, you would not want such a thing to happen to it. In addition, if you have already integrated your bot into your CRM system, internal servers or other systems, a breach can destroy everything!

Solution: Adopt the best security procedures and ensure that your Chatbot is well protected from external attacks.

Conclusion:

Interactions with a chatbot can influence your consumers to buy your products or to love your brand, or to hate and criticize it!

Since the benefits of Chatbots are becoming more and more proven, many companies are creating their own artificial intelligence assisted bots to improve their consumer service, marketing, sales, social media strategy on social networks. It should be remembered that the user experience remains the key that will contribute to the success (or failure) of your Chatbot strategy.

Delivering Pizzas Through Facebook? 5 Interesting Examples of Brands Using Chatbots

As we establish the emerging buzzword for 2017 in the digital marketing world is undoubtedly ‘Chatbots’. Over the last quarter, we have witnessed many ways businesses are using Chatbots to interact with their audience in the most effective way. Here are some interesting examples of how brands are making use of this effective conversational user interface on Facebook.

1. Dom – A Chatbot that can deliver a pizza

As the name suggests this Chatbot is an automated ordering Bot from Domino’s. If you are in the mood for pizza all you have to do is message Dom, the pizza bot and connect your pizza account so it can know your specific preferences for your order. This is a great example of the efficiency of Chatbots and how they can make tasks much for user friendly for customers.

2. ReplyYes – A Chatbot that can help you buy music and concert tickets

ReplyYes enables artists that are partnered with Universal Music group to sell tickets, music and other merchandise directly from the Facebook Messenger to its fans. With a simple user interface, this app is an example of how Chatbots can cater to almost every industry and contribute to its success.

3. FRAnky – A Chabot that provides you flight information and updates

FRAnky is the Frankfurt Airport’s Chatbot that was introduced to help passengers with their questions,flight updates and offers information of airport restaurants, shops and facilities within the airport. This an example of the revolutionary technology that can eliminate users going to the help desk of the airport or searching for the information online. The specific information is contained in the Chabot and is easily accessible to passengers instantaneously.

4. Just Eat – A Chatbot that helps you decide what you should eat

The JustEat Chatbot chats with users and provides them some ideas on food choices depending on your current mood. The Chabot asks you questions and redirects you to a particular dish that you can eat if you feel indecisive. Chabots can be a great customer service tool that helps brands keep track of their user behaviour.

5. SnapTravel – A Chatbot to book a hotel or travel recommendations

SnapTravel helps users find a hotel according to their budget and specifications on Experdia, Priceline and more than 100 other websites. The Chatbot asks the user questions about their travel dates and makes meaningful recommendations based on these dates. The Chatbot also provides users the opportunity to chat with human agents to take it a step further.

There are numerous examples on how Chatbots can be the tools for success in a business and as days go by more marketers are opting for Chatbots to leverage their business and get an edge over their competitors.

3 Questions You Need To Answer Before Building Your Chatbot

The emerging buzzword for 2017 in the digital marketing world is undoubtedly ‘Chatbots’. Over the last quarter, we have witnessed many ways businesses are using Chatbots to interact with their audience in the most effective way. However, for brands that are new to the idea of Chatbots the whole situation may be quite overwhelming.

Here are 3 questions you need to ask before adopting a Chatbot model for your digital space.

1. What role will the Chabot adopt for your business ?

Before answering this question it is important to know about the different types of Chatbot your business can adopt on the various social channels.

– The Assistant: This Chatbot acts as the user’s personal assistant providing crtitical information and answers queries that are usually pre-programmed. For example a restaurant could adopt a Chatbot to automate its reservation system or a travel agency can host a Chatbot for users to book their travel in the comfort of their favourite Messenger Application. This is one of the most popular types of Chabots in the market.

– The Conversational Bot: The sole purpose of this Chatbot is to strike a conversation with its audience. There are no pre-set tasks. However, this is not a recommended model unless a lot of time and money is invested in educating the Chatbot on every possible conversational topic.

– The Search Bot: This Chabot helps users find a particular set of information. For example, the Chatbot for a mall can help the user find exactly what they are looking by interacting with the Chatbot. Users can find a particular product or a particular article from a shopping or news website and more. The purpose of this Chatbot is to act like a search engine for specific topics related to the brand.

– The Complex Bot: This Chatbot is able to perform all the tasks specified above and more. This Chatbot is well versed in multiple topics and is able to provide a personalized experience to the user that interacts with this Chatbot.

It is always important to have a clear idea of what the Chatbot will help the business to achieve before developing your own. It is crucial to define which process can be simplified with this automation to build a better relationship with your audience.

2. What will be the personality of the Chatbot?

Establishing a relationship between a Chatbot and the user plays a great role in the success of a Chatbot. Therefore, it is important to ascertain what personality will the Chatbot adopt to make it more likeable and trustworthy among the users. The Chatbot must be injected with the values and persona of the brand itself and speaking with the Chatbot must make users believe they are interacting with the brand itself. This is what will help the user ultimately build a lasting relationship with the Chatbot.

3. Who will develop the Chatbot?

Let’s say the business has internally analysed the objectives of the Chatbot and how it will impact the goals of the organization. If someone is new to the Chatbot world, they may be unaware of who to approach to create a Chatbot. Should you opt to have a software company build your Chatbot or a dedicated Chatbot Agency? It is always recommended to go with the latter because the Chatbot Agency will be well equipped with the digital strategies needed to market the Chatbot, creating a personality for the Chatbot that matches the brand, even designing the the phrases it will use; as well as provide the technical assistance to develop and host a Chabot on the instant messaging applications.

With the numerous industry leaders using it to leverage their business in the digital space, Chatbots are undeniably the future in conversational user interfaces.

A Software Company vs. A Chatbot Agency – What Should you Choose for your Chatbot?

Since Facebook announced Chabots at the F8 conference last year, many brands have opted to introduce Chatbots on their Instant Messaging Apps. Chatbots are much more than automated responses, they are conversational interfaces that can be used to connect with the brand’s audience in the most efficient way.

With the rise in tech giants using innovative ways to interact with information, many businesses are considering the idea of teaming up with software companies to create Chatbots. However, they often face limitations due to the scope of the Chatbot being much more than a software. This is where, a dedicated Chatbot agency is more equipped to handle the intricacies of creating a Chatbot.

Let us explain why:  A Chatbot is nothing without the essence and personality along with what it conveys to the audience. A Chatbot is not merely a software but an efficient tool by which a brand can leverage its business and improve its conversation with loyal fans and potential customers. Every word and personality must be customized to suit the voice of the brand and generalized for every brand. Therefore, it is extremely essential to understand the digital space and more importantly the social strategy of the business before creating a Chatbot. The Chatbot must be technically sound while ensuring it is able to build a loyal relationship with its users while providing them a sense of satisfaction and connection with the brand.

Conversation blocks occur when the Chatbot is unable to process the user’s replies, these can only be understood with a deeper knowledge of user behaviour and habits on the platform which a software company may be ill-equipped to deal with.

A dedicated Chatbot Agency, therefore provides the business with reliable technical support with a core focus of personalisation in the Chatbot on the social sphere. While there are multiple ways how companies can adopt Chatbots in the most effective way, there is no denying the fact that 2017 is the year of Chatbots!

 

Are Chatbots really like Personal Assistants?

With the growing rise of Chatbots in the digital space, there are certain trends amongst the type of Chatbots available. The most common form of Chatbot is one that mimics a personal assistant. They are well equipped with handling sales enquiries and are usually given some form of human personality. However, many of them fall short in providing a personalised experience to the user. Even in the case of Ebay, one of the best Chatbots in this space; it does not provide anything more than what is readily available on the website via Messenger. The Chatbot has an impressive design and integration and a great working search feature. But is this all that a personal assistant can do?

Often times internet users are looking for assistance to make their purchases without really knowing what they are looking for. A Chatbot must be able to assist them in this instance too just like a personal assistant would.

Chatbots must be Customised

Even if it’s fun to search for products via the Facebook Messenger platform, the real potential of Chatbots compared to other channels of communication is personalisation. It is on this feature that companies must invest for better growth in sales. We already have websites that provide us with information about numerous products. The experience on these sites is not very interesting because the homepage is supposed to attract many visitors and is made for everyone. In reality, the person who goes to a shopping website like Ebay for for example, does not pay attention to 90% of what they see on the website.

On the other hand, bots are private conversations. For the first time, brands can offer personalised services and individual experience for each of their consumers who come to ask questions. It is also an opportunity for companies to store critical information about their target to see benefits.

The more conversation there is, the more the brand knows the preferences of its users and the better the experience will be! Chatbots are a direct and personalised link between brands and their targets.If you are looking for information on a site, these are not necessarily always obvious. From now on, you have this information directly in your inbox when you want it which is really relevant. Less information and more values. Brands now have the opportunity to provide each of their fan with a unique and personalised experience that improves over time spent in conversation.

Create a Chatbot and not a Website
At the moment Chatbots provide us results that the user may not be interested in. An effective bot for a shopping experience should ask closed questions and get to really know its user.
A good place to start is: The budget, the age, is this a gift or a personal purchase etc. After showing a list of products, the bot should be able to make recommendations and keep this information stored for the next time.

After showing a list of products, the bot should be able to make recommendations and keep this information in mind for a next time. This information gathered can be used in order to improve the its services and the user experience. For example, the shopping Chatbot could recognise the user’s tshirt size and provide relevant suggestions on the user’s purchase.  Knowing his user by asking them questions to provide tailor made solutions is the quickest and most effective way to then offer relevant product recommendations. Is not that the role of an assistant?

A Chatbot that does not ask you questions does not really want to know you. What kind of personal assistant leaves you alone facing the products by making you no recommendation? But a Chatbot asks questions, makes relevant suggestions by selecting the products that match your preferences. The Chatbot will also take feedback on these recommendations by adapting to what it learns about you during the conversation. The Chatbot can then remember the whole conversation in order to push you to the final act of purchase.