Decades ago, business transactions had to be done in a face-to-face situation. People had to visit their local brick and mortar store when they wanted to purchase a product. If a person needs advice on a particular item, they would have to drop by the nearest service center to talk to an expert. In most cases, it required waiting in long lines because staff was often limited.
Nowadays, consumers no longer need to leave the comfort of their homes. They can log in to the internet and find the solution to their problem. A simple web search can provide a detailed information about a certain product along with an exact location on where to buy. Even better, a customer can have it delivered to their door.
These advancements have made our lives more convenient. It also influenced two of the most important aspects of a business — Customer Service and Customer Engagement.
In today’s digital age, brands with outstanding customer service seem to gain the most loyal customers. Consumers are smarter now. They prefer companies with online presence, especially those that offer alternative communication channels like messaging apps. They look for brands that are able to give them information, and answers to their queries, in a timely manner.
The Role of Social Media in Customer Service
The very first social networking site was a website called Six Degrees and it lasted from 1997 to 2001. It was inspired by the ‘six degrees of separation’ theory. The platform provided basic features that we still use today. It allowed users to create a profile and then friend other users.
A few years later, more social media platforms were launched but only a few survived. Facebook, Twitter, and Google Plus eventually became the major players in the industry. The primary purpose of social media sites was to connect people and allow them to stay in touch even across great distances. But times have changed and social media has evolved significantly.
These days, social media platforms can do much more than showing what your friends are up to. Businesses turn to social media to promote their products and services in a brand new way. They create their own profile to increase brand awareness, establish more authority, and attract more buyers.
Social networks also come in handy when it comes to online marketing campaigns. It’s not that surprising considering people spend a lot of time on social media. According to a survey, the average daily time spent on Facebook is 35 minutes, Snapchat – 25 minutes, and Instagram- 15 minutes.
Using Chatbots for Social Media Marketing
Chatbots is a relatively new term used in digital marketing. It was only in 2016 when bots were officially introduced. Early bots had very little practical use but today’s bots are smarter. They are now being used on websites, messaging apps, and social media. Facebook alone has around 33,000 chatbots on their messenger app.
Another factor that makes chatbots so attractive to businesses is they can use the technology without having to know how to code. Companies can boost their social media engagement by offering more advanced customer support. With a chatbot, customers are talking to a “virtual” representative, not a real person. However, it is programmed to mimic the way a human representative would communicate with a user.
Here’s how chatbots can boost your social media marketing:
- Automated Customer Service
Studies suggest that 71% of millennials are expecting to interact with chatbots from their favorite brands. Bots can answer important questions, provide content and personalized offers on-demand, while inspiring engagement from social media users. Automating customer service also leads to a significant reduction in staffing costs .
- Better Access to Data
Bots can collect key demographic data like gender, age, product/content preferences, location and more. Thus, they are able to provide the business owner with essential information about visitors who talk to the bot. With such data, you can further improve your brand’s social media content and create personalized offers and promotions.
- Engagement through Customer Support
With a bot, customers no longer have to wait for responses. They can get instant replies even if they contact customer service outside business hours. Through a chatbot, you can also present options to contact support across multiple channels.
- Spread to multiple platforms
Apart from Facebook Messenger bots, businesses have been developing chatbots for other social platforms, such as Twitter, Skype, Slack and many others. This allows businesses to expand their reach.
Consumers are now online. Nowadays, people choose to shop at the comfort of their homes. The number of online shoppers in the U.S. reached 209.6 million since 2016. These figures are projected to reach 230.5 million in 2021. Chatbots have gained popularity because it offers the same convenience.
Thinking of implementing a chatbot into your current social media marketing strategy? Setting it up is easier than you think. It does not require any coding skills at all . Win customers by providing a consistent experience across your social media profiles. Contact us today to find out more about chatbots!