According to some reports, 80% of companies either use chatbot technology already, or wish to implement it by 2020.
They are playing an increasingly important role in marketing and customer engagement, especially amongst millennials, whose interaction is highly dependent on technology. Here, Robin Collyer, CRM & marketing specialist at Pegasystems, explores some of the top things that companies need to consider before adopting this technology…
- Positioning – Tasks given to a chatbot must have clearly defined parameters. It’s important to design engagements from the customer’s perspective and only employ a chatbot where it will enhance value for both the brand and the customer.
- Transparency – When interacting with a brand, customers need to know whether they are talking to a bot or a human.
- Benefit – Users must see that there is a clear advantage to communicating with a bot – from 24/7 customer service to faster access to services.
- Issue escalation – If a customer issue cannot be solved by a bot, then a human operative should be alerted immediately for a seamless handover.
- Support – Chatbots should be there to lend support to human interaction, not replace it – using chatbots shouldn’t come at the expense of the human touch.
- Delegation – The company must understand which decisions are made by a bot, and how to switch promptly to a human, when appropriate.
- Integration – Chatbots must be seamlessly integrated into customer engagement systems.
- Communication strategy – Chatbots need to fit flawlessly into the rest of a company’s communication strategy – the responses must be consistent in terms of tone, style etc.
- Empathy – It is critical that bots engage authentically with customers and interact with them with relevance – in the way that a real human being would.
- Authenticity – Chatbots can only be as good as the decision strategies guiding them (e.g. to determine the Next Best Action from your Customer Decision Hub) – make sure those strategies represent the brand you want to be.