Fact: Chatbots are changing your industry’s sales cycle
I ::hope:: chatbots will never replace human interaction…
But, (getting a little technical here) “contextual automation” can be set up with simple if/then logic to answer pre-sales and support FAQs, so you may have more meaningful conversations with your better informed prospects, once they are ready to talk to a human.
Chatbots are the present state of sales & marketing artificial intelligence (AI), and we can now create a tactful way to help your business interact with fans using a tool 1.2 BILLION use monthly: Facebook Messenger.
But, why should I care?
“Facebook Messenger bots are the future, and it’s time to start using them.”
– Neil Patel
I’m going to take that further, Neil, and say that they are not “the future,” Facebook Messenger Chatbots are NECESSARY NOW for your business. Don’t miss your opportunity.
Facebook Messenger has an average 80% open rate — with 4-10x higher click-through-rates (CTRs) compared to email! You’d be lucky if you got ~20% of email subscribers to open, amiright?
Facebook has been allowing business pages to communicate with their engaged audiences via Messenger since April 2016. Let that sink in. Why aren’t you on it yet?
Furthermore, why are we just learning about this really awesome tool? Because it’s not perfect.
We’re finding new ways to make it work, however. For starters, we can suggest responses, so we may guide an engaged human along a structured path, to answer some of their most frequently asked questions, before turning more informed leads over to a human.
Let’s back up a little bit…
What is a Chatbot?
A Facebook Messenger Chatbot is a dedicated messaging page, married with an individual message in your Facebook Messenger App, that sends and receives interactive messages, responding intelligently and automatically, based on logic.
You’ll need administrative access to your Facebook Business Page to create your chatbot, and in order to message your followers, you will need their permission first. We got you.
Live chat functionality can also be integrated, which notifies you when your attention is needed, and routes messages into a live chat.
For example, when the chatbot receives a difficult support question, or a predefined sales signal, you can take over the conversation in real time, but I’ll get into that a little later…
Just a few short months ago, only engineers were able to ideate and create these virtual employees, so you can imagine how interesting and engaging those were… </sarcasm>
Now, real marketeers are doubling down on chatbots to inform potential customers about a product or service, without having to deal 100% with a real, live (pushy), salesperson — while adding a little fun (and personalization using Facebook’s scary targeted data) along the way!
While companies, like PullString, are focusing the quality of conversations with technology and AI, you too can start small in this space.
First, define the most frequently asked questions your customers ask, and use that FAQ to put together a helpful, reasonable path folks should take.
In order to really get that path right, we like to interview our clients’ customers to come up with a properly defined set of Buyer Personas, so we may validate that the questions are something they want answered.
Then we build.
When was the last time you had a question for your cable, phone, or internet provider?
Rather than pick up the phone and talk with a technician, I know what I did — I sent a chat request to Project Fi.
What did you do?
A Facebook Messenger Chatbot turns customer service into a “create your own adventure” story, based on logic
Soon, we’ll all be able to resolve most problems via chat. Here’s your chance to get ahead of your competition.
According to Kissmetrics,
“Live chat has the ability to provide the convenient answers that customers want, while also adding significant benefits to the staff and bottom line of companies.”
Chatbots are turning into the most frictionless and economical way to get in touch with support in real-time, especially if you can get in touch with someone 24/7 without an attitude.
Enter: Facebook Messenger Chatbot
An automated chatbot can provide your prospects and customers with immediate access to help, proactively.
It’s not magic, Shia. You can pre-program instant replies for anybody at any stage in the buying cycle, at their preferred rate of engagement!
I don’t know about you, but as a potential customer, I’d rather be a slower responder — but if the business’ side doesn’t rush to type out a timely response, I get annoyed.
With Facebook Messenger Chatbots, your communications can be asynchronous, meaning a human doesn’t have to type out responses in real time.
Answers are already pre-programmed, and the messaging queue doesn’t need to wait for a reply to continue the conversation. You can pre-program realistic responses according to engagement.
I have ZERO attention span. I have virtual ADD.
I don’t want to wait eleven minutes on hold, or even three minutes for a response from a human who is probably only chatting out pre-packaged responses via a website customer support portal, with minimal compassionate care.
With the website chat model, the cost of human labor starts to adds up. When you have chat on your website, people expect that to be available 24/7.
NOW, your new “virtual assistant” Facebook Messenger Chatbot can pick up the ball on missed sales inquiries and customer service opportunities, without wasting your resources answering common questions and clogging up your day from doing what you’re best at: closing big deals.
Easily, you can set goals and signals that qualify people engaging with your Messenger Chatbot, so the ball is passed on to the right sales or support person for live chat, at the right time.
Stand out from your competition
…For now. Because chatbots are still in their infancy, very few businesses are using them at this time.
That’s number’s going to go up as news of this idea becomes more mainstream, but in order for YOU to stand out from your competition, you should jump on it before they do.
For example, if you’d like a Chatbot for your restaurant, you can offer button options within an initial chat: menu, directions, phone, and even encourage folks to order items for pickup or delivery.
For a more proactive approach, you can let folks know about upcoming special events, promotions, and live music on a set schedule they’ve agreed on — think daily, weekly, or monthly.
The possibilities are endless, but you don’t have to make this complicated.
For your real estate brokerage, you can ask questions and create a profile on each individual, as well as survey all subscribers at once.
You can spend less time on rental inquiries and identify qualified leads who are not just kicking the tires, based on engagement activities.
You can also add a booking component, so when someone’s ready to meet with one of your agents face to face, it can simply sync with Google Calendar or iCal to share availability in real time.
Facebook Messenger has fundamentally changed how humans communicate with each other, and it’s about to shift how people communicate with your business.