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Why your business needs a Chatbot in 2019

Why your business needs a Chatbot in 2019

It’s difficult to believe that there will be such a large uptake in AI technology for businesses. But why would a business require a chatbot? How can a chatbot be beneficial and become essential to a business? Find out here.

The ongoing evolution in the digital landscape has completely changed how enterprises do business today. Technologies are continuing to change how we use the Internet, both at a day-to-day consumer level and on the business level. 

Five years ago, digital marketing was all about apps or infographics, However, a new player has come into the spotlight: the chatbot. According to Business Insider, around 80% of all businesses will be using a chatbot by 2020.  

Chatbots are rapidly making their way into mainstream enterprise adoption. Failure to adopt now may cause businesses to be left behind. But let’s take a step back to understand why chatbots have become so popular lately.

 1. Understand where chatbots fit in your business strategy 

A chatbot is a service managed by rules you interact with via a chat interface. They are computer programs that mimic conversations with people using artificial intelligence. Facebook Messenger, Skype, and Telegram Bots are all famous examples of chatbots. 

Messenger by Facebook is credited with drawing chatbots further into the limelight by making it possible to integrate them into the platform. 

Chatbots are proving critical for all businesses that want to step up their marketing game through messaging apps, considering the four biggest messaging apps reached about 4 billion users in 2016 

With 1.3 billion monthly active users, Facebook Messenger is the most popular messaging channel of communication - making it a vital platform for reaching out to customers. There are currently 100,000 active bots on the Messenger platform.  

This extensive active user count has led organizations to start envisaging strategies to introduce chatbots. 

Messaging applications are very promising communication tools not only for social media but also as standalone tools. They offer a convenient alternative for companies to stay in touch with their customers.  

While 80-90% of apps are used once and then deleted, messaging apps are thriving and account for 91% of time spent on mobiles in the U.S. 

As user expectations continue to transform, it is imperative that businesses make an effort to stand out from the crowd.  

As Flurry reports: 

 “Time spent in Social and Messaging apps grew by an astounding 394% over the last year, proving to be the driver that helped mobile achieve its year-over-year time-spent growth of 69%.” 

2. Benefits of using a Chatbot for your business 

Chatbots are everywhere. They are speeding up time to response on your customer inquiries, enhancing conversion rates on your landing pages, and unblocking the employee inquiry mailbox. 

  • Immediacy: Chatbots allow companies to answer customer service inquiries of any kind at any time of day, from anywhere and even when companies are closed for holidays. 
  • Easy To Develop: Chatbots are typically easy to build. It depends on what the business wants to achieve, but businesses can design a simple chatbot based on Facebook Messenger without any programming experience. 
  • Scalability: Chatbots can allow your company to manage more customers than before and can help scale operations to new markets without having to worry about handling multiplying queries. 
  • Company Brand & Image: When communicating with the customer, the chatbot represents the company, so from a marketing point of view,  it is a perfect expression of brand building. 
  • Easy To Use: Finding information on a website or in an app is less intuitive. In most cases, it takes several steps until you have clicked through to the desired information. A chatbot eliminates the need for these superfluous steps. 
  • Personalization: Chatbot’s ability to synthesize metadata can quickly and easily personalize the customer experience. This may take the form of product recommendations. 
  • Cost-effective and Time-efficient:  Visitor engagement becomes easy and quick with the use of a friendly chatbot. This further helps convert potential visitors into customers. 

3. Types of Chatbots 

A. Command-based chatbots 

This is the simplest type of chatbot. It relies on a databank of replies and heuristics and only takes place in pre-defined ways and directions. The bots reply by selecting an answer that matches the context of a query.  

Command-based chatbots appear in messaging apps such as Messenger or Telegram.  

B. AI-based Chatbots 

AI-based chatbots can answer ambiguous questions and offer flexible responses to users' questions. However, they cannot understand more complex contexts or lead the conversation—they can only give answers. 

For example, CleverBot is an AI-based chatbot that learns from each conversation and uses these experiences to answer future questions more accurately. 

Recommended: How To Use AI And Chatbots For Your Business Advantage In 2018

Mark Zuckerberg’s “Jarvis” was an interesting AI-based chatbot. He says -- 

“My personal challenge for 2016 is to build a simple AI to run my home and help me with my work. You can think of it kind of like Jarvis in Iron Man. I’m going to start by exploring what technology is already out there. Then I’ll start teaching it to understand my voice to control everything in our home — music, lights, temperature and so on. I’ll teach it to let friends in by looking at their faces when they ring the doorbell.…”  

4. Approach for Chatbot implementation for your business 

chatbot-implementation-for-business

Many companies leverage their own framework to implement chatbots. Their framework involves the ideation of the bot use cases phase to the continuous improvement phase. The following framework is leveraged traditionally for implementing chatbots:  

  • Identify Goals: Identify the goals the company would like to achieve by implementing chatbots and the pain points the company wants to address.  
  • User Stories: Consider requirements as user stories, consider the end user's point of view, and use that to influence bot personality. 
  • Business landscape understanding: Understanding the current business and identifying a messaging platform to kick-start implementation. 
  • Conversation Design: After Prioritizing user stories, Conversation design is necessary to give the bot a conversational voice and develop Its Personality. 
  • Implementation Stage: Leveraging the NLP libraries, intents, entities and develop, test, releasing the chatbot. 
  • Continuous Improvement: Bot learns from a user’s behavior, monitoring performance and learns from each conversation and uses these experiences to answer future questions more accurately.  

Conclusion

The future will be heavily directed by Artificial Intelligence (AI) technologies which prominently includes chatbots. There’s a positive response to many chatbot benefits such as an increase in process efficiencies, decreased workload and improved customer service, but it’s important that a measured approach is taken to implement these technologies. 

If you’d like to know more about how you can use chatbots to benefit your business, do get in touch with us. 

Author: Enoch

This post was submitted by a TNS experts. Check out our Contributor page for details about how you can share your ideas on digital marketing, SEO, social media, growth hacking and content marketing with our audience.

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