Nowadays, we’re seeing more and more people embracing digital marketing bots. Bots make digital marketing simpler for marketers and develop a better user experience for the customers. It’s difficult to ignore the many ways bot technology is giving companies a competitive edge as the bots provide a better relationship between the brand and its customers.
What is a bot in digital marketing?
A bot is simply a kind of software that is used to run automated functions over the internet. You can build the software to do anything you want, and then wind it up, and leave it to perform all the tasks by itself. As you can imagine, this saves you a lot of time and assists you perform your everyday tasks a lot more effectively. One of these tasks is conversing with your prospects. In this case, you can program your chatbot with different responses to certain requests. If, for instance, a prospective customer clicks on your company’s webpage, a chatbot can ask them what business services they’d want to explore or know more about and give a response, or simply lead them to better information based on what the prospect chooses.
If a bot is programmed well, there is no need to worry about the typical, costly human error.
Chatbots for digital marketing- How they work
You must have a pretty good idea of how the top digital marketing bots function- but how are they able to chat with us or settle our queries independently?
There are three main methods that are used to run chatbots.
The first option involves creating what is known as a pattern matching bot. In other words, these bots classify text and give out responses based on the keywords they’re seeing. These patterns employ a standard structure known as Artificial Intelligence Markup Language (AIML). In pattern-matching, the chatbot only has answers to questions existing in their models. The bot has to stay within the patterns already executed into its system.
Alternatively, modern chatbots use algorithms. That means that for every type of question, there has to be a unique pattern in the database so that the bot gives the right answer. With different trend combinations, a tiered structure can be created. You can view algorithms as the way a developer reduces the classifiers and improves the manageability of the structure.
Lastly, chatbots can also employ artificial neural networks, solutions that enable bots to calculate the response to a question with weighted connections and data context. Here, every sentence provided to a bot is segmented into various wards, each of them working as the neural network’s input. As time goes by, the neural network develops and becomes more advanced, and the bot is able to have more accurate responses to everyday queries.
Businesses using these tools have to train their bots to become more effective and efficient; and lucky for them, training digital marketing bots is faster than training a human being.
How do you use chatbots in marketing?
In digital marketing, chatbots are specifically used to market businesses. There are many ways of using chatbots in marketing. Here’re are some of the most popular ones:
Gathering critical initial data from leads
Before any making any meaningful conversation with a lead, there are some details you have to gather. This includes contact details, the specific areas they need to be supported in, and whether they are a customer or not. As opposed to things like contact forms, chatbots are a lot more personalized and thus, a more efficient means to gather this data. This leads me to my next point:
Boosting website conversion by increasing engagement
Most users don’t stay on a webpage for more than a couple of seconds. It’s therefore important to find a way to improve the conversion rate on your website by getting them to take more time on the page or getting them to take action faster. You can use chatbots to engage the users and nudge them to take action. Let’s say you are marketing a course within a blog. It’s obvious that moving your guests from that page to a landing page would reduce conversion. Conversely, chatbots can work as a form on every page, thereby reducing the steps to downloading the course and increasing the chances of conversion.
If you need to schedule a critical sales or customer service call, or even an onboarding session, you’d be better off having a chatbot do the scheduling for you instead of having an endless back and forth with your customer.
Specialized functions of chatbots
Besides the means highlighted above, there are many other more “specialized” functions chatbots are often used for. These include the following:
You can use a chatbot to get users or prospects into your sales pipeline. Whether you use it for consultations or to set appointments as discussed earlier or gather emails for your newsletter, there’s no denying that it can be a nice start to a customer’s journey. You definitely won’t find many customers picking up their phones and calling, so it is important to add an easy means for them to begin communicating online.
If your business is getting many customer service requests via messenger, or maybe you want to begin using Facebook Messenger for customer service, you’ll find using a bot very helpful. You can build a bot that assists your customers to focus on their issues to a certain category before you direct them to the most appropriate answer or the relevant person to talk to.
Answering frequently asked questions (FAQs)
It doesn’t matter what you’re selling or the kind of services you are providing; no matter the business you’re in, there will always be a certain set of questions you’ll be getting. Chatbots keep you from wasting your precious time and energy answering those questions repeatedly by doing all that dirty work for you. This is one of the biggest ways people use chatbots in marketing. The customers get all the answers they’re seeking, and you get to do something more important than answering the same five questions 5,000 times a day.
Examples of chatbots
Many companies are already using various types of top digital marketing bots to seal deals, provide better customer service and so much more. Here’re a few examples:
This cloud-hosted database program uses a chatbot known as Drift on its site to answer its users’ questions and lead the most qualified users to a sales call. At first, the bot asks the users whether they have any queries about sales or pricing. When the user responds, it then determines whether or not the user is a qualified lead based on both their questions and responses.
Whole Foods Facebook Messenger Bot
This bot helps Whole Foods connect with users by offering products, recipes, and different forms of cooking inspiration. The bot also offers filters and a wide range of food options, including international delicacies -with a simple message. With this chatbot, Whole Foods is able to boost conversions by narrowing in on the type of recipes its users are looking for.
NatGeo Genius Bot
This bot was being used by National Geographic to promote its TV show “Genius” that essentially chronicled the lives of important historical figures such as Albert Einstein. For instance, before Albert Einstein’s show started, the chatbot would connect Facebook users who clicked “Send Message” with the genius and converse with them using his voice. It would then follow the users’ conversation by replying to messages with the show’s information.
BabyCenter UK Bot
BayCenter UK’s bot helps the childcare company by assisting parents to get through the stages of motherhood through Facebook Messenger. It asks questions about the challenges the parent is facing, before suggesting personalized advice along with targeted content to expound on the advice.
Three mistakes to avoid in chatbot digital marketing
Chatbots are clearly helpful and lucrative in digital marketing, as they provide easy options to help customers with their queries, and even assist in making critical product recommendations. Unfortunately, the chatbots can be ineffective and detrimental to your business if you make the following mistakes:
Having spammy or pushy bots
In digital marketing, you can increase customer engagement with the top digital marketing chatbots. In the process, it’s easy to go overboard while trying to get prospects to interact more with the brand. As a result, you can end up with a flood of blank, unsolicited messages. As much as possible, therefore, try to create a program that gauges customer response and communicates only when necessary.
You can also be tempted to take the easy route and design a monotone- and then get stuck with poor engagement when you put it to work. Making the necessary enhancements to humanize your chatbot and create a personality in it is important and lucrative.
Implementing the chatbot without testing it first may render them unresponsive when they encounter unexpected glitches as they communicate with real users. You, therefore, need to test your program with real-time communication to ensure it is operating as expected.