Chatbots are already working in customer service. Thanks to artificial intelligence (AI), their skills are being fine-tuned, making them fit for tasks in B2B marketing. At the same time, they are gaining acceptance and the dialogue between people and software is becoming very normal. Companies should therefore use this chance to generate leads.
Chatbots can do more than customer service – and are accepted
Many companies rely on digital contact persons for their customer service. These so-called chatbots are, thanks to artificial intelligence, able to understand and answer questions like real people – both in writing and in spoken communication. This works so well that they are being used more than ever today. According to the specialists from MobileMonkey, sales with chatbots in 2025 will be at around 1.25 million US dollars. In the same publication, they also quote a forecast from Gartner. This US market researcher expects that by the end of 2020, 85 percent of customer communication will be taking place using chatbots. And a survey by the live chat software developers Userlike found that 80 percent of the 415 people questioned have already chatted with a digital dialogue partner.
How chatbots can help in marketing
In light of the increasing presence and acceptance of chatbots, there are many opportunities for them in B2B marketing too. They make sense for the following purposes, for instance:
Chatbot marketing can be leveraged at several stations of the customer journey. This method is especially effective during the customer’s research and decision-making phases. In practice, chatbots offer their service as chat widgets on company websites or via messenger services, amongst others.
Chatbots communicate campaigns
Chatbots can reinforce the success of a marketing campaign. The following functions are possible, for example:
- They directly speak to customers during their visit to a certain Internet site and thus grab additional attention.
- During the dialogue, they more or less take the customer by the hand and explain the products or services of the company to them.
- Depending on the target group, the chatbots create a “personal” mood and inspire conversion.
Chatbots answer FAQs
In the B2B segment, there is often a deep need on the part of the customer for explanations of the products or services. Specialised FAQ bots deliver answers to standard questions and thus relieve their human colleagues of additional work, who can then concentrate on more complex matters in service communication. And the customers get a fast reaction from the bot. Long queues are therefore often avoidable. This allows for more customer satisfaction.
Real-life examples: Gaming bots to increase brand awareness
The liqueur manufacturer Jägermeister expanded their marketing mix in 2017 to include the JämBot. This was part of a campaign on Facebook, whereby the users could send personal greetings and messages to friends. The special thing about this promotion: the messages weren’t sent as text or a graphic, but rapped by the German rappers Eko Fresh and Ali As.
In this way, chatbot marketing increases the popularity of a brand and a product in an original way. Thanks to the optimally cut and entertaining presentation, the promotion grabbed a huge amount of attention among the target group in a quasi-playful way.
Chatbots open opportunities for leads generation
B2B customers value direct and personal communication. If their expectations are met, this increases their trust in a company and ensures a stronger connection. Chatbot marketing is also suitable for this purpose and serves to generate leads as a result. Here are three examples:
- As soon as an interested user clicks on an ad, the chatbot starts up a chat with them. Thanks to Natural Language Processing (NLP), the chatbot sounds like a real person. Over the course of the talk, and based on answers to pre-defined questions, the software identifies the user’s needs. The user then receives just the right information for raising their attention. At the same time, the system receives data from the user, which is then used to optimise the customer journey.
- A chatbot can significantly simplify access to prize draws and encourage users to play along. It actively presents potential answers to quiz questions via buttons, supports it with short videos and, at the end of the round, collects the participant’s personal data. Thus reaching yet another lead.
- Topic-specific chatbots offer content that adds outstanding value for customers. This makes sense for introducing new products or the latest news. For instance, the corona pandemic would be an occasion to inform about the illness in general, or about its impact on customer relations and relevant procedures within the company.