Thinking About a Bot?
So you’ve heard the bot buzz and probably even engaged with them, but you’ve finally come around and decided it’s time for your business to start using a chatbot. If so you’re right on the money. Chatbots ARE the future.
Why? Well, it’s simple. As competition increases, companies must become increasingly aggressive in order to maintain an engaged audience and acquire new customers. While many companies have relied (and still rely) heavily on email marketing, it’s become clear that chatbots are making up for the shortcomings of traditional email marketing. Bots are quickly evolving into the most effective and unique way to reach and listen to your target audience.
The Problem with Email Marketing
You know the drill. You’ve given your email addresses on countless websites via contact forms or popups in hopes of getting updates about new products, receiving website content, or getting discount codes for deals and flash sales. You then get a series of separate emails to your inbox that include a slew of information, possibly an in-your-face (probably cheesy) graphic, and an enthusiastic call to action. The email reads like a long and clickable digital flier, for lack of a better term.
This is ONE sided communication. You may have guessed this from the “do not reply to this address address” located at the bottom of the email.
After a potential customer’s first interaction, only 15% of people will open follow up emails anyway, and then what? You know nothing about your new subscriber and are left with very little information to leverage a trip down funnel lane. In addition to high acquisition costs and low conversion rates, the non-personal approach doesn’t help you build a meaningful relationship.
And here lies the problem, and it’s a simple one. Companies relying solely on email marketing are limiting themselves by not giving the recipient a place to instantly communicate, offer their personal information, ask questions or receive any sort of direction their shopping experience. This results is obvious. A “maybe later” drop off in engagement and a lack of sales.
Before we go building bots anywhere on World Wide Web, we must first look at where people are living online. We, as marketers, would be silly not to go to where our customers spend their time.
So…where are people living? They’re living on Facebook. And if I know you at all, you’d prefer to text, you like to message, and nearly all your communication takes place via text or messenger apps, so more specifically than just living on Facebook, your customers are living on Messenger.
Unlike traditional email marketing, not only does Facebook Messenger make the back and forth possible for companies, but it makes it easy. Not just that, but Messenger marketing results in sky high open and click through rates. It’s where your customers spend their time, it’s more personal, it’s less invasive, and it allows both retailers and consumers to converse efficiently, conveniently, and effectively. It is the most direct way to communicate. Period.
According to BI intelligence, people are using Messenger apps, like WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger, more than the top four social media sites. There are now more than 1.3 Billion people using Facebook Messenger each month. In a study conducted by Facebook IQ using 12,000 people worldwide, 56% of consumers would rather message a business than call for customer service, and 61% of people actually like getting personalized messages from business. Messenger will not be a channel. It will be the channel!
The Killer Content
Like I mentioned above, what gives a messenger bot the upper hand in the marketing world is the unique opportunity to build a more personal and human relationship with a customer. Hence why writing killer content is of the utmost importance.
So, how do you ensure you’re going to get the best results? To start, before you begin writing copy, remember to keep it simple, keep it conversational, and always have a clear and concise goal in mind. If you know the end goal (for the user), you’ll have a much easier time guiding the bot’s trajectory and walking users through to the finish line.
That’s always number one, but there are a few “best practice” bot components you should consider doing to make sure your bot is working hard for results. You can start by telling participants how your bot will help them. What’s in it for them? Why will this conversation be a good use of their time? Call out your bots capabilities and the value it has to offer.
Ask only what you need to know to move a customer down the funnel. Make sure your questions are clear, easy to answer, and cover your bases to reach that initial goal. A good way to ensure that the bot will keep the customer on track is to create buttons or quick replies with calls to action sprinkled throughout the sequence. There’s no reason to have someone spend more time with the bot than they need to.
In terms of copy, don’t forget, it’s a bot that lives on Facebook. Give it a personality! People flock to Messenger because it’s personal, interactive, and light hearted. Make sure that your bot reflects your brand’s personality, and keep it fun. A little fun never hurt anyone. The most viral campaigns have an element of humor, and studies show people are most receptive to humor online, so anything you can throw in to make the engagement feels less like a transaction, have at it (and don’t hesitate to use emojis).
A messenger bot can be your best friend and biggest ally so use follow up sequences to reach out to your cart abandoners, thank your customers when they make a purchase, provide timely order and shipping updates, and follow up by asking how they like their new product. Once you’ve proven yourself as a company that cares about its customers, you can even ask them to leave a review! You have earned their trust with helpful content, and you deserve a little bot TLC too.
Staying Within Facebook’s Guidelines
When you’re planning a messenger broadcast be sure to keep the first message short. It should be quick and easy to read and respond to. That’s where you’ll get and keep the user’s attention. Make it easy for users to unsubscribe, and don’t send spam.
You can send a few types of broadcasts. Subscription broadcasts can’t include promotions or ads, BUT you can send them anytime, as often as you want regardless of how often subscribers engage with your page. You can also use subscription broadcasts to ask questions. The thing to remember here and why it’s fair game, is that you’re not blasting them with ads, you’re creating an interactive (and hopefully a personalized) experience.
Then there’s promotional broadcasts. Unlike subscription broadcasts, promotional broadcasts do include an ad or promotion, but there’s a catch. In order to stay within Facebook’s guidelines you must first interact with the user. It’s as simple as sending a broadcast that says “our summer collection has arrived, would you like to check it out?”. Users that select “Yes” may now receive your promotional offer. Keep in mind that your promotion must be delivered to the user within 24 hours. After this period you will not be able to send any other promotional messages unless the user interacts with your bot or page again.
To ensure that your bot doesn’t get flagged, make it really easy for users to unsubscribe, and don’t spam! We actually recommend including a message with the ability to unsubscribe within each and every one of your broadcasts. Sure, this might make it easy to quickly lose subscribers, but you’re left with a core list of high value people that actually care about your content.
That’s a Wrap
We’ve given you some bot basics and hopefully you realize that having a messenger bot will help you to increase engagement, sales, as well as conversion rates. . But, where do you start? No fear, we’ll do the heavy lifting. More and more e-commerce businesses are turning to Messenger marketing agencies like Fetch & Funnel. We’ll start by doing a comprehensive evaluation of your brand and business, make a few strategic (bot specific) recommendations, conceptualize and write out that killer content, and build and manage your new Messenger bot.
Every hour you wait is just another hour without the help of a kickass messenger bot to scale your business online. Get in touch with Fetchbot today!