What is the Purpose of a Chatbot?
You’ve seen Chatbots, you’ve thought about them, but what is the purpose of a Chatbot? There are 4 main purposes that I know of that I really like about why you need to have a Chatbot. Let’s dig into them straight away and answer this very interesting question…
1. Chatbots for customer service
Firstly, customer service and support. Chatbots are one of the greatest tools in the modern-day business world to help your business enable customer support and customer service. Chatbots take the pressure of having all these people and staff members answering the phones on a continual basis.
What does your customer service look like? Do you rely on lots of person-to-person conversations on the phone, lots of hours, lots of shifts?
Or have you been able to outsource some of the work to automated responses that help you get through the first set of questions to narrow down the service request?
If you’re in the latter camp, good for you: You’re actually following the trend of companies taking the lead and shifting their customer service, or at least part of it, to chatbots, powered by artificial intelligence. The reasons for this are many. People want attention 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and artificial intelligence is able to offer at least part of the help. And they can offer help without putting a customer on hold for any length of time. What else do you need to know about artificial intelligence powering customer service? This graphic explains it.
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I’ll give you an example.
We had a client of ours who had three people that they were paying on a full-time basis to answer the phones and answer questions and usually the questions were the same every single time.
Different people asking the same question, “Where are you located? What are your hours?” And so on and so on.
What they did was they employed a Chatbot to help with that service problem and what it did was it eliminated at least one person from the full-time position. Now, is that a good thing when we’re eliminating jobs?
Yes and no.
At least what we do know is that the consistency of the answers was 100% the same every time because the Chatbot was giving the same answer all the time. Here’s the other cool thing about that is that that Chatbot was working 24/7, it didn’t stop.
The chatbot was always working and delivering customer service answers and solutions to people asking questions especially in this day and age when we all live around the clock 24 hours a day. People are asking us weird things in the middle of the night. Our Chatbot was still able to do that, so there’s number one.
2. Chatbots can eliminate repetitive tasks
Number two is that Chatbots can eliminate repetitive tasks. Now, just like the problem in number one, there are lots of businesses out there who do a lot of the same sort of stuff, whether it’s onboarding a customer, whether it’s delivering an eBook or a product that they purchased, whether it’s showing them a video that they need to do.
A Chatbot can actually do that for you as well. Think about this. If you’ve got the time to eliminate a repetitive task where you don’t have to do it anymore and let’s face it if you’re a small business, you’re probably doing a lot of these tasks yourself and some of them I dare say are probably falling along the wayside and you’re not doing them properly.
A Chatbot picks up that piece where you left it off and makes sure that it’s getting done every single time.
So what you’re doing is you’re eliminating the need for you or that person in your business to do that sort of stuff manually. A Chatbot can do it as well and probably do it even better for you too..
3. Chatbots can build a database
Number three, one of my favorites of all time, which not many people talk about is that chatbots can build a database. A Chatbot helps you build a database. The tools that we’ve got to use today in the Chatbot world lets us collect data and information.
In fact, we can find out all sorts of information about our customers who are using the Chatbot. Facebook, if we’re using a Chatbot through Facebook, they give us certain amounts of information, but when we ask the customer for information such as maybe their phone number or how much they spend at a restaurant or their favorite color or all sorts of things, we can extract that data and collect it and use it and serve it back to them later in a conversation style so that we’re having that conversation with people.
But the cool thing is chatbots can build a database.
We’re collecting their name and their email address, maybe their phone number, and we can use that through other forms of marketing as well because Chatbots are not just designed to be the only part of marketing. They’re designed to integrate with your email marketing platforms, your telephone, and your text messaging platforms.
There are all sorts of wonderful ways that you can reach out to your customer. Chatbots are a great way to introduce people and get them and their data from the Chatbot and then use other forms of messaging to connect with them as well.
4. Chatbots for the customer journey
And number four is the customer journey. We all know that our customers go on a certain journey when they come to us. Maybe you’re there at the awareness stage where they’re not sure who you are or what you do.
A Chatbot could help explain what you do. It can show videos and images and graphs and other forms of multimedia too. It lets customers know exactly what’s going on with your business.
And as that customer gets more familiar with your business, you might take them through the consideration stage, or then you might take them to the decision stage. So your Chatbot knows exactly where each person is on an individual level in their journey with you.
The thing I like about Chatbots is it’s the conversation that you can have with one-to-many, but it feels like it’s a one-to-one conversation.
So your customers are going through it feeling like you’re just talking to them, which you are on a Chatbot, but you’re not having to spend all that time doing it because it’s all automated.
So that’s the fourth purpose of a Chatbot.
Let me recap.
What is the Purpose of a Chatbot?
1 Customer service and Support
2. Eliminate repetitive tasks
3. Builds a database
4. meets your customers on their Journey
If this is your first time finding out about chatbots, then these other resources might help you How to use chatbots for marketing