There are numerous texts about chatbots – most of them repeatedly mention the advantages of the tools without the context. With no doubt: reduction of operating costs, immediate response to customers’ questions, and 24-hour availability are real benefits you can see at first sight. But chatbots are not only a collection of isolated features. That’s why it’s worth taking a closer look at the environment in which they’re created and at relations, they establish with users. We hope that thanks to this article, you’ll know how Messenger chatbots improve businesses.
Regardless of the size of the company or the industry you work in, you know that choosing the right communication channel is absolutely essential. If you’re not where your customers are, sooner or later, they’ll go to the competition. And choose a company that will immediately respond to their needs – a place where interaction requires no effort.
So let’s start from the very beginning – the environment virtual assistants “inhabit”. One of the most popular is Messenger – the close relative of Facebook. This messaging platform, together with other social media and communicator apps, takes 75% of the users time on the internet (Statista, 2018). When combined with a Facebook fan page, Messenger creates an ideal environment to communicate with your brand’s clients. It bridges the distance between you and them. And allows for a more personal and intimate dialogue. 🙂
In order to create a chatbot on Messenger, you don’t have to install any additional apps or websites. Users contact the company via communicator they use on a daily basis. It requires minimum effort from them. Plus gives a brand the possibility to use all the resources and features of Messenger platform.
The best confirmation of user preferences are the Facebook data from this year’s F8 conference: clients exchange 20 billion (!) messages with companies a month. That’s over twice as much in comparison to last year’s 8 billion messages.
What are the most popular reasons why clients write to companies? According to Facebook:
We can see that clients treat Messenger as a helpful channel for communicating with brands – a source of information about products and support. However, it’s getting increasingly difficult to meet their demands. Imagine that you have to give answers to questions of 30, 100, or even 10000 people. Holding a personalized and individual conversation with each of them would require an enormous amount of work and time. In some cases, it’s even impossible. Especially if the company’s user base and the amount of questions is bigger. Chatbots are a great support in this field. Well-designed provide customers with quick, clear and simple answers.
The Messenger chatbot of Domino’s Pizza is a perfect example of how bots can meet the individual needs of users. It allows them to see the newest menus from the nearest Domino’s pizza place (hello geolocation!), order the chosen pizza, and even make a complaint. The chatbot answers all the users’ questions at the same time and individually. 🙂
Social media have another great advantage: they allow to engage users with graphics, animated content, or emoticons –spicy ingredients that have stolen the hearts of netizens. Messenger gives much more room for action in this field than other tools available on the market. And make a dialogue with a company more personal.
Chatbots which got settled in Messenger can use the full interactive and user-engaging potential of the communicator. Firstly, because the tool is still relatively new. It attracts the interest of users and inspires positive feelings (the surprise when you constantly discover new features). Also, Messenger allows using a wide variety of elements, which evoke positive emotions and encourage interaction.
Among them are GIFS – short animations that have conquered social media and communicators (the very GIPHY, a popular GIF website, has 300 million active users a day!). GIFs, often fragments of well-known and liked TV series or movies, allow to enliven short text messages, making them more “human” in nature. Above this, brands that weave GIFs into their communication can create a more attractive way of speaking. They enable online dialogues that are closer to natural face-to-face conversations.
Chatbot dialogues can also be enhanced by emoticons. As non-verbal elements, they help users understand what to click ➡️ or simply allow brands to adjust to the specific nature of social media communication ✌️
Both elements I have mentioned may seem pretty obvious, but you can be surprised by how easy it is to forget about them, especially when you’re brainstorming user journeys.
Another chatbot elements are Carousels. They make it easy for users to scroll through products or services they’re interested in. They also give easier access to information about the given issue.
You can now say: “A chatbot on Messenger – a communicator used by a number of people, with the possibility to create personalized answers to users’ questions and with a wide variety of elements that enhance conversations. But how can this tool actually improve my business?”.
This question is asked more often than you might think. And believe me, there are many different answers to it. Most of all, it’s best when your chatbot focuses on one distinct activity or when it seeks a solution to one specific problem. The more areas the chatbot has to “cover”, the worse it is for its performance. Set a goal that will help you work out a solution and, later, measure your results. Usually, companies focus on one of the following areas:
If you want your tool to effectively improve the business communication, don’t forget that it should adopt the identity and tone of voice of your brand. Of course, keep in mind that it also should provide customers with relevant answers (here, the ball is in your court). It also should produce visual and emotional sensations with the help of graphic content – costless elements you receive as a bonus from Messenger. In this way, the virtual assistant will become a natural extension of your communication strategy, not a useless tech gadget.
Once again, remember that the more tasks the chatbot has to perform, the less you’ll benefit from it. Establish a specific goal and work towards achieving it. The saying that “practice makes perfect” can also be applied to virtual assistants. You have to consistently work on developing your bot. For instance, if you introduce innovative sales elements or the newest features offered by Messenger, your tool will be even more effective. It will satisfy your customers and make business growth a piece of cake.