It was a Saturday night and I had nothing to watch on TV. I skimmed through Netflix, tried IMDB, but nothing seemed right. So I started a chat with And Chill, a Facebook Messenger chatbot I noticed a few days earlier.
After just a few questions, where And Chill learned which movies I liked, it recommended me a new movie to watch. The recommendation was perfect, the only thing was I already saw it. So I nagged And Chill to suggest me another one, and then another one.
In the end, the chatbot came up with an interesting movie recommendation, based on my preferences. It took less than a few minutes and it also high-fived me for goodbye. I admit it: I chatted with a bot and I liked it.
What’s a Chatbot?
Only a few months after Facebook introduced their Bots for Messenger platform, there are more than 11,000 chatbots available, and over 23,000 registered developers for the platform. And Facebook Messenger is not the only platform that supports bots. There are bots for Slack, Skype, Kik, Telegram and many other text-based platforms.
Chatbots are software applications that run scripts according to the user’s inputs. Apple’s Siri and Amazon’s Alexa are famous chatbots that learn the user preferences and simulates a human-like responds.
Bots are nothing new. People were developing bots from years now, but technology developments raised a new level of interest in the industry. Those developments include utilizing artificial intelligence and machine learning to constantly learn the user preferences and offer customized answers with no human touch.
Ready for the Bots Takeover?
The implications of chatbots on our daily lives can be tremendous. If the bots will fulfill their promise, we will get all the information we want wherever we are. For instance, we can set up a conference call from the chat box on Slack or Facebook, letting the bots on all sides find the perfect time for all guests; or we can order pizza from our favorite place without downloading a special app or calling the restaurant. Consulting with a lawyer or an accountant firm could be a total different experience then we are use to.
If the bots futuristic scenario gives you the chills, don’t worry. The bots will not replace humans so fast. Not only they can’t learn everything most of what humans ask, they also lack an important quality: the human touch.
You see, people chat with bots as if they speak to a human person. They say “Hi”, “Thanks”, and “How are you” to a machine even though they know there’s no person behind it. And as humans, we expect the same from the other side. Currently, bots can handle a chit chat for a few sentences, but not a much deeper conversation. And they are surely not funny or compassionate as humans. The bots are here, but it will take some time till humans become redundant.
Bots for Marketers
Among the thousands of bots available online, there are useful bots which were created especially for marketers. Here are some marketing bots that you can try out today:
“How many people visited my site yesterday?”
“What’s the open rate of my last newsletter”
With Glance, you don’t have to leave Slack to get answers. Glance helps you get stats, updates and other metrics from your daily marketing platforms directly on Slack. Glance supports Google Analytics, Instagram, YouTube, Intercom, WordPress, MailChimp, and many other platforms.
Create surveys that your fans can answer on Facebook Messenger. The survey builder is easy to use, and it takes just a few moment to define the welcome and finish messages, the trigger message (“Enter “Go” to begin”) and to add the survey’s questions.
After creating the alert, the bot monitors any mentions of the keyword over news sites and blogs and notifies you for new mentions on Slack.
Content tracker is a useful tool for content marketers. It notifies the marketers in real time whenever their blog posts reach any milestone. The tool tracks inbound links, traffic and social shares and sends the user a Slack notification when the content hits its goal.
Track a Facebook ad performance from Facebook Messenger. With this bot you can ask Zoey, the Advertise.ai bot all the questions you have about your campaign, such as “How are my ads doing this month?“, “How much did I spend on ads this year?” or “What was my CTR today?”. The bot currently supports Facebook and Instagram Ad campaigns.
Find More Bots
Discovering new bots is still an issue. They are not so easy to find through Facebook or the web. To make things easier, you can search for bots in a curated bots directory such as Botlist or BotPages.
DIY: Create Your Own Chatbot
Ready to create your first chatbot? Start with Chatfuel. Chatfuel is a bot builder for Facebook Messenger and for the Telegram app. The builder helps you define the messages, the content that you wish to integrate into the bot, and more. The platform is friendly and easy to use and there’s no coding required.
Do you use any bots at your company? Did you create a bot on your own? Share it with us in the comments!
Need Help Making the Right Choice? Meet Klear: