Between digital assistants, smart speakers, phones and chatbots – the rise of AI and machine learning hasn’t reached ‘Star Wars’ or ‘Transformers’ levels of adoption and sophistication yet – but we aren’t that far from it.
As marketers, we know that machine learning is a digital marketing trend that will continue to impact the way organizations operate and communicate.
But the question must be raised: Are chatbots a fit for my organization this year? And if so, how can I begin using chatbots for marketing without feeling robotic?
To tackle this digital marketing trend and chat with success, you’ll learn the following:
So, what are chatbots? Bots are created using artificial intelligence (AI) and are designed to communicate with humans, helping them solve problems and answer common questions while accomplishing the task they were set out to perform.
What can chatbots do? Lots, but it depends on the problem your organization is using a chatbot to solve. For example, organizations have used chatbots to accomplish the following:
How can chatbots and AI accomplish all this? A combined effort of deep learning (advanced machine learning where an AI solution makes its own decisions based on data points it’s receiving) and IFTTT (a programming conditional statement meaning ‘if this then that’). By enabling chatbots with these protocols, organizations can utilize advanced (and very smart) marketing automation in real time.
And your company isn’t the only one looking to turn chatbots from a digital marketing trend into a robotic revolution.
According to Gartner’s ‘Making Live Chat A Must-Have Engagement Channel ’ 2017 report, by 2022, over 85% of companies will offer some form of live chat on their website or on mobile devices to interact with their customers.
At this point, your team may be ready to roll up its sleeves and allow the robots to handle the conversational heavy lifting. Not so fast. Before making the investment, heed these considerations.
1.) Have a Team Member Responsible for Monitoring and Innovating Chatbot/Human Customer Relations – It’s important that your organization conveys its brand through AI when using chatbots for marketing or providing any other task. So, your company must get it right the first time, especially considering the investment and time it will require before sending your friendly bot out to meet and greet strangers. Designing and creating conversations is imperative to plan out before your chatbot rollout.
Depending on the application your organization is using a chatbot and AI for, it could simply program a series of scripted responses, but typically, the technology behind it can inherently be unpredictable. This isn’t even considering how conversational you want your bot to be, and how closely you want it to personify your brand.
2.) Consider Using Humanistic Speech Patterns and Language into Your Chatbot – With the machine learning capabilities that are possible, your AI will learn to converse – or at the very least – point the prospective customer in the right direction. Your organization can program your chatbot to be familiar with some categories outside your respective industry. The potential to connect with customers exists today. The Wall Street Journal cites a survey Forrester Research Inc conducted, stating that 36% of adults prefer digital customer service – which could include chatbots and automated email – to that of working with a human. That survey was conducted in 2017 in with 4,500 people across the U.S. That statistic is likely to rise as other industries adopt the best use and user experience for their AI or chatbot.
3.) Keep Customer Data Privacy and Experience at the Forefront – Programming your chatbot to ask the ‘right questions’ is imperative. But that can also help to decrease the time of closing a transaction. Having a chatbot on social media platforms is becoming increasingly common. Some brands have executed their rollout in a way that stays loyal to their brand, while also keeping customer privacy in mind throughout the transaction or task.
If your organization operates outside the U.S., it will need to adhere to GDPR regulations. You can catch up on what your organization can do now that it’s in effect.
One of the most important considerations when integrating any chatbot or automated solution is to enable it to be consistent and repeatable. If your organization has taken our considerations into account, your team will hopefully feel more confident in the rollout. But if you had any questions about the potential integrations for your organization, contact our team. We’ll provide recommendations keeping your specific goals in mind.