Did you know that a bot can be an excellent tool for marketing your business? Yes! More and more new, emerging and even established brands are now taking on the latest trend in content marketing – the use of chatbots for marketing. If you are running a business and have not explored bots yet, start now, before it is too late. So, what is a chatbot? It is a simple computer program that enables a user to interact via a chatbot. Well, sort of. In other words, it is a type of automated robot that helps a business offer customer service. But can bots help businesses in their marketing process? Let us find out.
Bots work with the help of artificial intelligence (AI) in the same manner that robots function. They are programmed to have special language processing skills that help them communicate in a ‘human-like’ manner. Today, many companies are using chatbots in marketing to interact with prospective consumers and convey information about product and service offerings.
Here is the list of uses:
- Aids better communication with website users: Probably, one of the best ways through which a business can market itself using bots is on the company website. When users, visit the official company website, they can use the chat interface. Typically, as soon as one opens a website, the chat window will be programmed to appear. For example, a fast-food business can use bots to interact with customers for placing orders, modifying orders or sending out information about new products. Also, whenever a person visits the website, he/she is greeted with a welcome message by the chatbot. The message can be anything such as ‘ Hello, how can I help you?’ or even something that is marketing-inclined like ‘ Hello! Have a look at our new and improved menu’.
- Market insights: With the number of people using multiple apps on their phones decreasing, bots are now becoming a favourite marketing tool in the digital era. In fact, more and more enterprises are using chatbots for marketing. The other reason for the popularity of this platform is because of the valuable data insights that it provides to digital marketers in today’s times. Chatbots have the capacity to gather specific information such as purchase behaviour, preferences and the like.
- Customized marketing solutions: With AI-powered chatbots that collect specific information, bots can be used to develop customised and personalised marketing messages and advertisements. For example, when a user interacts with a bot, it will first greet the customer, gather some information about what the customer is looking for and then provide relevant information.
- Better customer engagement: Chatbots and marketing go hand-in-hand because they provide the prospective customer with better engagement facilities. Many bots act like personal assistants, helping users solve queries and help them in every step of their purchase process. Another advantage is that bots also engage in outbound marketing by engaging with customers after the product is purchased. Bots, therefore, send a number of follow-up messages. Given below are the different methods employed to engage with customers:
- Send messages on birthdays, anniversaries and other special occasions
- Make announcements about new products and services
- Send customers feedback and survey forms
- Interact with customers and offer customer support for post-purchase issues
- Provide quality information
- Helps lead generation: What a chatbot essentially does, is, – chat with users, directly answers questions and also offer information about sales and discounts. It will also notify consumers in case there are certain exclusive promotions. This type of interaction helps the better lead generation that directly converts into sales. All marketing strategies can be fine-tuned in such a manner that it helps in the conversion of sales pitches into business deals (profits) in the long run. This is one of the best uses of chatbots in marketing.
- 24/7 customer service: Customers will be able to get customer support services round-the-clock with the help of a chatbox. This means that there is content shared with consumers on every day of the year including on weekends and other holidays.
- Global reach: Marketing campaigns can be executed across the world, thanks to the reach that can be offered by bot technology. No matter which part of the world your business is in, you can easily reach out to customers using a bot. Chatbots can also run on both web and mobile platforms.
- More interactive than social media marketing: Bots tend to be well-programmed and are run with high-level AI. This enables the bots to interact in a very personalised manner with users. These bots also integrate with social media platforms and draw information through AI, making them a powerful tool for communication. At times, it makes it challenging for customer care personnel to respond to all queries that are posted on social media. This is when bots come into the picture and offer better interaction/ communication with end-users.
- Powerful branding tool: A bot is a very impressive marketing and branding tool for enterprises. They represent and give out information on behalf of the company, hence act as a representative. This is why businesses give a lot of importance on the way that the bot is built. Many enterprises are developing apps that provide customers with creative and fun responses. For example, a retail chain outlet bot can enable customers to look up interesting recipes along with the shopping process. This will enhance customer experience and create a sense of satisfaction with buyers.
On a concluding note
It should be noted here that a chatbot cannot be a replacement for human interaction. However, over the course of the last couple of years, chatbots have become a favourite marketing tool for all types of organisations, be it startups or established firms. Since bots are powered by AI, there are lesser chances that they will send out information that is not relevant to the end-user or the prospective customer in question. If used wisely, a chatbot can be a highly effective marketing platform for all types of businesses in today’s digital marketing environment that is seeing newer developments with each passing day.