There is a new area which is likely to transform lead generation completely in the following years. There are number of reasons why business which catch this trend early enough will be able to profit immensely:
Reason 1. Chatbots have no working hours. They don’t go home after 6 pm, they don’t arrive late. Working in a sales company, I realised how often customers would write emails, make applications or inquire in the small hours of the night. In many cases, there might be hefty time difference between you and your prospects. Giving them the opportunity to get the information they want when they want it will immediately transfer into more sales.
Reason 2. People are intimidated by calls. We are so used to texting that it comes more natural than picking up the phone. People have fear that on the phone they might be forced to make a decision or forget to ask something important. They can always get back to the chat if they have more questions.
Reason 3. Chatbots are now extremely clever. Investing in a well-developed chatbot which communicates with a database is almost equal to getting anew member of staff. A chatbot can book appointments, record personal information, send links, send confirmation texts or emails, even take payments.
Reason 4. You have full control on what is communicated to your customers. When designing a chatbot, your developer will ask you for a script you would like her to implement. This means that never again will your prospect get outdated information, rude attitude or wrong details. In return you will always have the right spelt name, phone number, the correct booking date. You can get integration with you CRM and get this data straight away.
Reason 5. Chatbots encourage people to inquire. “Hi, can I help you with something today?” is a simple invitation which can make miracles with engagement and time spent on your website. Sometimes people give up just because they cannot find something straight away. Having someone who instantly provides answers is the dream of any digital age consumer.
Reason 6. It inevitably saves you money. Spending money for paid advertising can be an expensive exercise. Once you get traffic to your website, a friendly chatbot can engage more visitors and help you convert them into customers. Not to mention the money spent on customer service labour.
Reason 7. Chatbots can be funny. Your developer can include a small talk script in the code of your chatbot which makes jokes or asks funny question. It is another way to add personality to your brand. Interaction with technology is also about fun.
Reason 8. Chatbots cost less than apps. To get a chatbot developed is much cheaper that a whole application. However, you must also consider investing into a quality product which gives the user a good experience. Make sure the service you buy can “learn” over time.
Reason 9. They don’t have to be downloaded. A chatbot is there for your customers and they don’t have to leave your website to get what they need.
Reason 10. You have a chance to be an early adopter. Using chatbots increases loyalty and attracts the attention of technology loving customers. If you start using them early, you are likely to get most out of them on a discount price. In the following year chatbots will become as mainstream as apps and business pages for social media.
Bonus: If you are still not convinced that messaging is the future of marketing: Google AdWords now has a message extension to their ads on mobile and Facebook has an automated messenger feature for its business pages. More to come.