What if we told you there is a social media tool that 80% of businesses will be using by 2020, and you probably aren’t utilizing it yet?
Introducing Facebook Messenger bots (also known as Facebook chatbots). According to Hootsuite, a chatbot is defined as a “piece of automated messaging software that uses AI to converse with people”. We know, it sounds a bit daunting (and sort of creepy), but it really is a useful tool.
Think of a chatbot as your Facebook page’s very own personal Siri. It understands questions related to your business and is able to effectively and accurately answer them. It allows a customer to simply type a message in (just like they’re messaging a friend) and receive an answer. Goodbye making phone calls, searching in Google or waiting for web pages to load just to find the answer to a simple question.
But how do Facebook chatbots benefit your business – not just customers – and is it worth investing time in?
The answer is endless ways and YES!
How Do Facebook Messenger Bots Help Your Business?
Communication, communication, communication. Building a mobile app to communicate with customers is expensive, and most people don’t want to clutter their phone with yet another app. In fact, 71% of users delete an app within 90 days. Very disheartening considering the time, effort and money poured into developing an app.
However, according to Apple, Facebook Messenger is the third-most used app in the world, with 1.2 billion active users every single month. People use it to stay in touch with friends and family, making it difficult to imagine deleting. Utilizing this to communicate with your customers is a no-brainer, making it shocking that there are only 300,000 chatbots currently!
The time is now to invest the time into creating one as there isn’t much competition. Here are the main way we use Facebook messenger bots for our Social Media Agency and it can help your business too.
1.Eliminate Customer Care Costs
Customers expect answers 24/7 (and sometimes, when your audience is international, customer care needs to be present around the clock). No one likes being placed on hold. No one likes being transferred. No one likes speaking to a robot who can’t understand their accent. Staffing customer support representatives to assist people 24/7 can become expensive. AI (artificial intelligence) Chatbots can help track deliveries, answer return policy questions, book appointments and answer simple FAQs. The best part? It’s all done organically in a conversational way.
2. Filter Leads
Chatbots can be particularly helpful when trying to filter out high-quality leads to a human sales team. It can be programmed to ask “What is your budget?”, “When do you need this done by?”, “What date do you need the venue”, or even “How big is your party size?”. The possibilities are truly endless – and it can help simplify transactions and programming for your sales team.
The possibilities are endless. According to Forbes, businesses are utilizing Facebook Messenger for every task imaginable such as…
a) The Marriott allows customers to change hotel reservations through Facebook Messenger, as well as redeem points without needing to chat with an agent.
b) Staples allows customers to check shipping notifications through Facebook Messenger.
c) Sephora uses Facebook Messenger to help customers book appointments AND help find particular lipstick colors in the company’s inventory.
d) Pizza Hut allows you to order a pizza through Facebook Messenger (yes, really!)
The best aspect of Facebook Messenger chatbots is they are extremely customizable and can cater to your business’ specific needs. Perhaps the best example of customization is Bud Light’s utilization during the 2017 NFL season. Bud Light “promoted its team-branded cans by creating a chatbot that could order and deliver a case of beer in under an hour on game days.”. Personalization? Check. Geo-targeting? Check. Timeliness? Check. It’s no surprise this bot saw an 83% engagement rate.
4. Bringing Back Customers
Chatbots are seriously smart and can retain information to help you re-engage customers. Instead of breaking the bank for advertisements, a Facebook Messenger can personally reach out to customers at the ideal time. Hootsuite points out it can “Remind a customer about those cycling shorts still sitting in her cart, or that she sent her mother-in-law birthday flowers this time last year”. Now that’s cool!
Best Practices for Facebook Messenger Bots
Now that you understand the reasons why you should use Facebook Bots, let’s highlight some of the best practices for when you feel ready to utilize them.
- Expectations: A robot can’t do everything a human can (well, for now!). Keep it simple at first, develop one task for the bot to handle, and add more as you become comfortable.
- Personalization: Make sure your customers want to interact with your bot by allowing them to personalize their preferences. It will give you a higher click-through rate.
- Don’t Drag it Out: Stick to five clicks or less to get to a point of sale. Only ask the important stuff or customers will lose interest.
- Keep Your Humans: It’s important to still recognize when a human customer service or sales representative is needed – and to allow customers to connect with one at any point in the conversation.
Facebook Messenger bots are expected to revamp the way businesses conduct customer service, sales, and marketing thanks to their ability to quickly, accurately and conversationally communicate with customers. How will YOUR business utilize them?