After years of being consigned to research labs and sci-fi stories, artificial intelligence has finally started to make its way into the mainstream. Technologies such as machine learning, computer vision, and natural language processing are changing the way how we approach various technical, commercial, and theoretical problems. There are now consumer-grade, as well as enterprise-level AI-powered products available on the market, which is further accelerating their adoption rate by individuals and businesses alike.
One of the more ubiquitous examples of AI in use today, is the simple web robot, or bot for short. These programs are designed to perform certain predefined tasks without the need for supervision by human operators, which makes them ideal for doing simple, repetitive activities in all areas of business.
The digital marketing industry has been quick to embrace bots, seeing in them the opportunity to automate a significant portion of their everyday procedures. To give you an idea of what bots can add to your marketing campaigns, we have created a short primer on their current usage trends.
Soliciting Reviews Post-Purchase
The best way to nurture your audience is by keeping them sufficiently engaged whenever they interact with your brand. Unfortunately, some interactions are inherently less conducive to being made engaging, or require a disproportionately large amount of effort to become such. Product reviews are one such example. The benefit of having good reviews for business success is a well documented fact, but sometimes it can be quite difficult to encourage customers to write one. This is where bots come into play.
Instead of giving your customer a blank sheet of digital paper to write a review after a purchase, try putting them in a conversation with a chatbot. Program the bot to ask questions related to the product in a friendly, conversational tone. It will make it easier for your customers to formulate and express how they feel about their purchase, instead of putting them on the spot by asking them write something essay-like.
24/7 Customer Support
When customers engage with your brand, they usually want to ask questions related to the products and services your company is offering. Responding to these queries is mandatory if you wish to retain your audience in today’s competitive marketplace. However, answering the same kind of question day after day, customer after customer, can quickly get tiring even for the most patient customer service representative. Fortunately, modern bots are perfectly capable of performing this repetitive task, allowing your human staff members to attend to more important matters.
Companies like Servisbot offer chatbots that can be set up to respond to common customer queries through multiple messaging channels, providing round-the-clock support as long as your servers are running. These bots can also act as analytics tools by providing information about problems that your customers are facing, which can then be used recursively to modify bot behavior to provide an even better service experience.
AR Marketing Events
If you are keeping up with the current marketing trends, you have probably considered implementing an augmented reality marketing campaign to engage with your audience on a more intimate level. Usually, an AR marketing campaign will resemble a video-game, with participants having to engage in various activities in order to accomplish certain goals, usually in order to receive some sort of prize, like a preview for a new product. Such campaigns can be further enhanced through the inclusion of AI-powered participants.
A bot can take the role of a NPC (non-player character), whose job is to provide participants with information related to the campaign. It could give notify participants about certain events happening, give them tasks to accomplish, or provide answers to any questions they might have. The novelty of communicating with an AI is certain to entertain your (potential) customers, giving them one more reason to pursue your brand in the future.
Personalized Shopping Experience
Few customers simply go out and buy a thing they are looking for. What they do instead is browse around the store, whether physical or digital, before commuting to a purchase. Sales associates are there to help the customer decide what they would like to buy, but having someone attend to every customer in an online shop is practically impossible. Unless you hire a bot for the job.
Bots have no limitations on how many customers they can serve at once, which means you can provide each one of them with a personalized shopping experience. Data from these interactions can then be used to further profile returning customers, so your bot will continue to improve its suggestions the longer you have it running. Tracking customer responses through the bot will also give you a better overall view on why they prefer certain products over others.
If current trends are anything to go by, bots are shaping up to be an integral part of digital marketing in the future. Their advanced learning and automation capabilities allow them to perform specific marketing-related tasks with greater efficiency, and at a lower cost than a human. Marketing experts should embrace this change, as it will allow them to devote their time to more creative endeavors, instead of getting bogged-down with repetitive tasks.
Michael has been working in marketing for almost a decade – and has worked with a huge range of clients, which has made him knowledgeable on many different subjects. He has recently rediscovered a passion for writing, and hopes to make it a daily habit. You can read more of Michael’s work at Qeedle, or catch up with him on Twitter.