How to choose the best channel for your chatbot

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The chatbot is becoming a common fixture for companies online. The big question for them is which channel should they install it on?

The oft-repeated mantra you might hear from a real estate agent if you are buying a house. Forget the number of bedrooms, the size of the garden or if the windows are double glazed; it is all about which plot of land the house is situated on. What is true for your home is also true for the best chatbots.

The quality of your knowledge base is crucial. But a close second in importance is the channel you choose for your chatbot. Pick the wrong one and you risk alienating customers who are expecting certain functions from their virtual assistant based on the social media account or website they are using.

Within the last couple of years, chatbots have entered the mainstream and are employed in numerous channels – each with their own advantages.

Facebook Messenger chatbot:

Facebook boasts arguably the most populated social media channel for chatbots with more than 100,000 available to talk to its 1.2 billion users.

After it emerged that its bots were hitting a failure rate of around 70%, a recent update suggests a move towards concentrating on transactions and performing services rather than sparkling conversation.

Facebook bots will be a part of group chats to perform functions such as providing statistics around a sports match or creating a music playlist. Given it will be part of a group chat, the expectation around its conversational features will be low as it is simply performing an almost secretarial service.

In addition, functions such as Smart Replies will allow you to perform actions like viewing business hours or booking a restaurant table without leaving the chat window. These features all point toward Facebook bots designed to serve rather than interact with the customer.

Twitter:

Twitter appears to be trying a different approach with their bots, aiming to provide a medium for companies to interact with their customers to offer an experience which is fun, rather than transactional.

For example, the company’s Direct Message Card aims to draw consumers into testing out their chatbots by playing games or taking part in trivia. One example is the Bot-Tender which asks you a series of questions to help select your favorite cocktail, giving you the option to post the results later.

Skype:

On the same path as Facebook, Skype’s bots are generally utilized in group chats for functional purposes. One example can be found with the Skyscanner bot which can be called into a conversation if one member wants to book some flights.

One new addition will be the introduction of voice chat to provide users with an alternative to typing by accessing the Skype calling API. With this in mind, it is possible that their chatbots could become more interactive rather than strictly functional.

Slack:

While other channels are targeting themselves at the general public, chatbots on Slack are used internally by businesses to increase productivity, improve communications or manage tasks.

These bots can be divided into two categories: push and pull chatbots. Push bots aim to send you notifications or provide you with the information you need – be it reminders or important news of the day. These will generally be intelligent bots which rely on a foundation of natural language processing (NLP), artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning.

Pull bots are far simpler and perform specific transactions which you initiate yourself. An example of this is the Uber bot for ordering transport.

Website:

Of course, one potential concern with the other channels is that you are not in control of your platform.

Within your website, you are able to dictate exactly how your chatbot functions, including its purpose, the user interface, and experience.

Implementing your chatbot on your own website, of course, means that the customer can engage in conversation without leaving the page. This is valuable for those looking to boost conversion rates and provide an easy way for customers to ask questions.

The chatbot window of opportunity is wide open for companies that want to transform their business. To get through this window, the onus is on businesses to recognize what channel will best serve their needs.

Inbenta utilizes its patented natural language processing and +11 years of research & development to create interactive chatbots with an industry leading +90% self-service rate.

Companies around the world including Ticketmaster UK utilize the InbentaBot to maintain a personal service for their customers while reducing support tickets.

Source: https://www.inbenta.com/en/blog/chatbot-choose-best-channel-chatbot/

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How AI Makes Our Life Easy Through Chatbots

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Why chatbots at virtual service desk?

In today’s fast-paced life, no one has the patience to hold on to a customer service call for several minutes. No one likes hearing, “Your call is important; please stay on the line” or “all our executives are busy at the moment; please wait”.

Convenience is a key component of customer experience (CX) and even a single case of negative customer service experience drives away a potential and valuable customer from a company. To overcome this, one of the fastest growing companies in the world is coming up with chatbots to serve at their service desk.

According to Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook, “Messaging business has to be like messaging a friend.” It is also said that the best CX chatbot is one in which that the customer cannot identify as a human or a computer. This can be achieved by passing the Turing Test.

What is AI’s role in a chatbot?

The AI aspect in a chatbot is based on machine learning. It is known as Natural Language Processing; it has the proficiency to understand a conversation and mimic human speech. An artificial intelligence (AI) agent in a chatbot achieves the goal through the ‘sense-think-act’ cycle. In this cycle, the information we type/speak is sent to the agent and the information is then converted to machine language. It further continues to mine relevant data from stored information of the knowledge base and updates the newly gained knowledge to make a decision.

The final step is decision-making and during this process, the more intelligent chatbot prepares a few steps ahead for an expected series of questions and then modifies its decision per need. Later, the decision is turned into an action in form of text or voice chat.

How to measure the intelligence of a chatbot?

The intelligence of a chatbot is evaluated on the basis of NLP and its understanding of information even when you construct it in an incorrect way. The other important intelligent factor of a chatbot is the memory; it should be able to remember who you are and respond accordingly. Just remembering is not enough; it should learn the pattern of your choices, issues, likes, and routine. For example, in online retail portals, chatbots must remember and recall your preferences of color, size, brand, etc.

However, AI and conversational skills should go hand in hand for a successful chatbot. The conversation has to be more interpersonal. Language crafting and conversation scripting skills are considered the heart of a chatbot’s UX design.

What are the current challenges with chatbots?

Chatbots can help in solving various customer problems, but sometimes, the problem itself arises from a chatbot. One of the major problems in a chatbot is that it cannot think contextually.

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Chatbot being unable to understand the context when asked for the menu

AI has made life so easy that it also has its disadvantages; it memorizes all your personal and bank details when you place an order online with the help of a chatbot.

Imagine telling Google assistant, “Ok Google, order me a backpack” and it proceeds to order with your existing bank information. But this can be done even by a friend or a stranger who has your mobile phone. An authentication (like voice/fingerprint/signature) process has to be factored in before proceeding with any of the bank transactions to avoid cases of fraudulence. These problems will be addressed very soon with further development of AI.

What is the future of chatbots?

Eventually, the goal of a futuristic chatbot is to be able to interact with users as a human does. As the saying goes, “the best interface is no interface.” Voice chat is trending with the introduction of smart speakers like Amazon Echo, Google Home, Apple Homepod, etc.

The shift is happening from NLP to NLU, and so the focus is on allowing machines to have a better understanding of the user messages. The advantages of using a CI is to increase the user attention by providing the information progressively based on the user’s previous inputs as an option.

Source: https://www.hcltech.com/blogs/how-ai-makes-our-life-easy-through-chatbots

How Chatbots Can Pair with Email to Achieve Your Marketing Goals

In today’s fast-growing technology world, you must be up to date with latest emerging technologies. You must be ready to survive in the market with your uniqueness. It’s very important how you can attract the customer? The answer is “BOT”. To attract the customer using BOT technology is a very great way.

Let’s see, What Exactly BOTs are?

Basically, BOT is an Artificial Intelligence. It is a computer program which is able to talk or chat with customers. BOTs operate as a virtual assistant for customers or other programs and its behavior is like human beings. They also are known as Chatbots, Spiders, and Crawlers. They are having the ability to understand questions, order etc. and for that, they give appropriate response and answers. They access Web sites and gather their content for search engine indexes.

Advances in artificial intelligence are changing the ways businesses are able to communicate with their audiences and it is proving to be very effective. As a result, chatbots are becoming one of the best ways to engage customers.

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Recently, we have seen a lot of articles that discuss chatbot marketing vs. email marketing. Since chatbots are receiving high engagement rates while the open and click-through rates of email are declining, it is not a surprising conclusion that chatbots are more effective than email marketing.

Many companies are lucky to get a 5-10% open rate through email marketing, while Messenger chatbot marketing through Facebook Messenger boasts an average 70-80% open rate in the first hour. Not a lot to argue with there in terms of chatbot marketing vs. email marketing, but you also need to consider that email marketing still delivers great conversions.

Why Email Marketing and Chatbots Complement Each Other

You would never use just one marketing channel, so there is no reason to abandon your email marketing tactics just because Messenger chatbot marketing is performing better. By creating a strategy that joins email marketing and chatbots, you can get the results you crave.

These two channels can very often have different functions. An email drip campaign can be great for telling the story of your brand, while a chatbot can be used best for answering customer service questions in a timely fashion. It is important to understand which platform – chatbot marketing vs. email marketing – is best for certain use-cases and act accordingly.

It is also possible to promote one channel on the other and get even higher engagement on both. For example, use your email marketing to inform your customers of your customer service chatbot.

You can also use your Messenger chatbot marketing to gather email addresses. Then, offer subscribers content through your bot and ask if they would like to receive similar media via your newsletter. This kind of cross-promotion is a great strategy for integrating email marketing and chatbots and in turn gain more users on both channels.

Furthermore, statistics show that 33% of 18 – 24-year-olds prefer to buy products directly from Facebook. Since you are able to allow customers to purchase your products directly from your bot, the use of Facebook Messenger chatbot marketing may be the ideal situation. If you’re also running Facebook ads, you will see even more reach and success. Support this with an email marketing strategy, and the sky’s the limit!

Source: https://snaps.io/chatbots-can-pair-email-achieve-marketing-goals/