As I’m sure you know, the faster you can respond to a customer the better chance you have of doing business with that client. Time was, e-mail was an excellent method of building your client list with a view to closing a deal eventually, after numerous follow ups to build the level of trust. Unfortunately, there is such a deluge of e-mail today that most of it is note opened or read. Even if it read, there is limited response to the Call To Action (CTAs) contained therein. Recent studies show that e-mail open rates rarely exceed 20% and Click Through Rates (CTRs) are less than 5%.

Back in the 90s, AOL introduced AIM (AOL Instant Messenger) the forerunner to the messenger platforms incorporated into today’s social media services. Today, the Facebook Messenger platform connects you to over 1.3 billion people each month with over 2 billion instant messages passing between people and businesses. On top of that, 53% of those who message businesses say they are more likely to shop with a business they can message.

To provide the instantaneous customer response that makes messenger platforms has one drawback Рthey require constant monitoring so that replies can be sent at the earliest  opportunity Рa costly time investment for any business. Enter Messenger Bots.

So what are Messenger Bots? Bots are way of offering a viewer choices that help them navigate to the information they require, almost as if you were there to tell them the direction to go in. On Facebook, for example, using a Facebook Messenger Bot, you can route the incoming customer to the help they need based on their selection from a menu. The bot appears as soon as the viewer tries to message you.

Example: 

Messenger Bots can serve a variety of uses including brand-building, couponing, event promotion & ticket sales, quote requests, appointment setting, and consumer education. Here is another example:

Options for customer selections can include send a message, phone number with tap to call option if viewed on a smartphone, redirect to a web page, landing page, image gallery or contact form, a buy button, or even a second Bot. Used extensively by major corporations, bots are providing up to 400% ROI according to some providers. Not only that, statistics also show that, compared to e-mail, bots average an 80% open rate and 30% click through rate (CTR). It is little wonder that there are more than 300,000 bots now in use on Facebook Messenger.

Facebook Messenger is not the only place where bot usage is growing. It is possible to add messenger bots to your web site and collect information from steerable conversations on any page. Chatbots take this one step further by offering a character avatar to introduce the conversation or an actual person can be recorded in front of a green screen to greet visitors and invite them to use the bot. Check out this example: https://chatagentdemo.com/9BHDp7K5AXzN

Bot conversations are usually organized into “flows”. It is important to try and stay conversational, asking questions and leading the client to the next question based on their response. For example, in the case of a restaurant, the question may be asked, “Are you interested in dining in, take out or catering?” If the answer is “dining in” (or dining or eat in or inside, etc.) the client may be redirected to the menu page on the restaurant’s web site. If the response is “take out” (or delivery or home or take away, etc.) the client might be redirected to the restaurant’s Grubhub account page where he or she can place on order. If the answer was “catering” (or cater or party or event, etc.) the bot might direct them to the next part of the sequence where they might be asked to choose the event type from Business, Wedding, Birthday/Anniversary, Reunion, etc.

All in all, bots are growing in usage, provide great return on investment and generate leads and direct sales if properly implemented.

If you are interested in having a messenger bot constructed for your Facebook page and or a Chatbot for your web site, please let call us today at (772) 257-0123.

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