4 Ways to Convince Your CMO to Embrace Chatbots

Chatbots
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CMOs & Chatbots

Not one but many accomplished tech observers have opined that chatbot is the next technological advancement that brands must look forward to. It would not be very far-fetched to say that after app, chatbots form the next step in the process tech evolution. While chatbots are still at a nascent stage, the excitement is partly based on the fact that billions of people around the globe have already directed their mobile-based attention from simple applications to messaging apps like WhatsApp, WeChat, Line, Slack and most importantly, Facebook Messenger.

Now, as the momentum has been firmly established, it is time for CMOs of brands to clearly understand how investing in chatbot development can potentially enhance the results of their marketing efforts. When you are pitching chatbots to the decision makers, make it clear that investing in this technology can effectively smoothen certain process and even help to solve business challenges.

It is a known fact that chatbots can add a human touch to otherwise boring, automated processes, and improve the quality of customer experience. However, it is also important to take a look outside the obvious benefits. Thus, while discussing the matter of implementing chatbots in marketing processes with head honchos, talk about how chatbot can help to grow a brand and reach out to new customers:

1.Increasing reach by making boring customer service much more entertaining:

Decades of academic research as well as Facebook studies have proved that reaching out to buyers, especially light and lapsed buyers) is vital for brand growth. So rather than viewing chatbots as only a cheaper way to serve existing customers, it is now time to look for ways in which chatbots can expand the clientele.

For example, talking about the weather is so boring that it has become the topic of most unenthusiastic of conversations. Now, Poncho the Weather Cat is making weather-talks interesting again. Poncho is available on Kik and Facebook Messenger and answers all of your weather-related questions in a very amusing way. Talk about engaging an user! Now since Poncho has already made weather-checking quite fun, more and more people are checking in with this bot for daily updates.

Your boss might be thinking how a bot can make an interesting introduction to a company or how can it increase ad performance or expand organic reach? Most importantly, how can a bot gather useful information that can be repurposed for marketing automation. In this regard, the finding highlighted at the F8 2016 can be mentioned. One can now run reach-optimized Facebook News Feed ads that drive directly to the chat bot.

2.Facilitating personalised communication between the brand and the customer:

Getting a number of mails daily in the inbox or from brands is hardly a favourable experience, especially if the mails are about deals, coupons, etc. Instead, imagine receiving a quick message saying, “Hey, looking for some new outfits to up your game this summer? Let me know since I have some cool offers and latest style tips for the season.” Way more interesting, isn’t it? As far as fashion brands are concerned, many have already embraced chatbots which act as personal stylists and shopping assistants for customers. Some premium examples are H&M, Sephora, Burberry, etc.

Besides haute couture, retail and e-commerce (eBay, 1-800-Flowers, Macy’s), health (HealthTap, MedWhat, Melody from Baidu), food (Whole Foods, Taco Bell, Domino’s),  sports (NBA, Copa 90, Toni), publishers (NY Times, Today Show, CNN), media and entertainment (Disney, Stubhub, Activision), travel (Hipmunk, Uber, Skyscanner) and financial (Fidelity, Nerd, Capital One) organisations have also started using chatbots. These bots do everything from providing information about the brand to entertaining users through games and quiz, from placing and tracking orders to making payments, all in a friendly, conversational manner.

3.Making early-funnel decision-making processes more effective:

There are moments every now and then, when people require expert advice on something or the other. They ask themselves, what type of dress would suit them the best? Where they should rent an apartment? Which car they should buy or how much life insurance do they need? While now one needs to a representative of their preferred brand to get these type of questions answered, a bot can effectively answer these questions. Meeting a company representative may be difficult as per one’s busy schedules, chatting up a bot hardly takes any time. Thus, catering to basic queries via bots can help the company get more leads and even make a few sales at early funnel stages. It needs to be ensured, though, that the bot knows exactly when it can hand over the conversation to a human representative in order to make sure that the sale gets finalised.

Meeting a company representative may be difficult as per one’s busy schedules, chatting up a bot hardly takes any time. Thus, catering to basic queries via bots can help the company get more leads and even make a few sales at early funnel stages. It needs to be ensured, though, that the bot knows exactly when it can hand over the conversation to a human representative in order to make sure that the sale gets finalised.

Meeting a company representative may be difficult as per one’s busy schedules, chatting up a bot hardly takes any time. Thus, catering to basic queries via bots can help the company get more leads and even make a few sales at early funnel stages. It needs to be ensured, though, that the bot knows exactly when it can hand over the conversation to a human representative in order to make sure that the sale gets finalised.

4.Improving ROI by upgrading data collection processes for product evolution, customer service and reaching new buyers:

Usually, surveys are all about static questionnaires. A company can adapt a smarter technique for surveys by using chatbots. A chatbot that can swiftly adapt mid-survey–without messing up methodological approach, can be used to gather customer insights that, in turn, can be used in product evolution, customer service and reaching new buyers. Chatbots not only offer a new but a  more or less familiar interface for respondents, they also enable the integration within different contexts using developer APIs. This caters to survey participants easily without needing to redirect them to a separate questionnaire on the site.

Since this is the beginning of the rise of chatbots, let it be the start of using smarter ways to replace the old ways of solving actual marketing challenges. Chatbots can do so much and their true potential in the marketing industry is, as of yet, untapped. Now is the time to sit with chatbot developers and see how a bot can be customised to suit your brand’s criteria and achieve its goals.

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