Why WhatsApp bots are a revolutionary customer engagement tool

WHY WHATSAPP BOTS ARE A REVOLUTIONARY CUSTOMER ENGAGEMENT TOOL?

The marketing landscape has changed significantly and old channels like email and even social media marketing are not as effective as they used to be.

Consumers are simply saturated with marketing messages and even the biggest of budgets are at risk of being tuned out.

Companies need a new way to engage with customers.

One channel that should be at the top of any businesses’ list is WhatsApp, the chat client actively used by 1.5 billion people in over 180 countries to stay in touch with friends and family.

Yet it’s not practical to hire hundreds of employees to messages tens of thousands of clients on WhatsApp. That’s why you need a WhatsApp bot.

But what exactly is a WhatsApp bot?

Chatbots on WhatsApp work just like automated, AI-enabled chatbots on other channels – think website chatbot support, Facebook Messenger, etc.

A WhatsApp bot looks and acts very similar to another WhatsApp contact. The difference is that a WhatsApp bot delivers advice, support and marketing messages from your business straight into one of the world’s most popular messaging tools.

WhatsApp bot services rely on a mix of pre-programmed chatbot routines and artificial intelligence to respond meaningfully to your customers.

WhatsApp bots have a key advantage

At a time when consumers have so much marketing targeted towards them, it is a real game-changer to be able to interact with customers in a place where the marketing noise is less.

Consumers use WhatsApp to keep in touch with friends, to share content and to join local and mutual interest groups. For many people, WhatsApp is a core communications platform – replacing text messages, phone calls, and even social media.

WhatsApp now also offers guaranteed encryption which boosts the trust factor for users who depend on it to communicate on a daily basis.

In essence, WhatsApp is an essential communications tool that is not cluttered with advertising.

Businesses who jump in with a WhatsApp bot have a rare opportunity to build customer engagement in an environment that is highly immediate and free of marketing distractions.

How WhatsApp bots can boost customer engagement

Companies that create a WhatsApp bot stand to engage with their customers more closely than ever before.

WhatsApp-based customer engagement revolves around three key areas:

Direct marketing and promotion

Most companies will already have a sizeable database of phone numbers. Using a WhatsApp bot your company can directly market to unlimited numbers of users by sending marketing messages as a direct WhatsApp message.

In turn, using a bot WhatsApp messages can function as automated conversations. For example, you could send a special offer to a user and automatically process their sign-up using a bot.

With a WhatsApp bot, there is no need to convince the user to visit a website and no risk of losing user interest due to slow customer service response

Essentially, marketing via a WhatsApp bot is more immediate and more responsive – and far better for building customer engagement.

Customer service

The less effort your users have to go through to reach customer support, the better. WhatsApp is the ideal channel for customer support – users don’t need to mess around with a separate website, app or phone call.

Your WhatsApp bot can answer common support queries and do it more quickly than human support workers can.

If a bot is stuck and unable to answer a unique support query it is easy for a human customer support agent to step in, seamlessly taking over a support case – and still within the convenient environment of WhatsApp.

Just think how a WhatsApp support bot can bring your business closer to your customers by embedding support sessions right next to everyday conversations with friends and family.

WhatsApp notifications

Getting notifications seen by customers is getting harder and harder. Consumers frequently ignore inbound email even where it manages to escape spam filters, while the plethora of apps in the marketplace means that users suffer from app fatigue.

SMS messaging is an option, but with users no longer using SMS messaging to communicate with friends and family your business risk losing engagement by getting relegated to an outdated channel.

In contrast, sending notifications through the WhatsApp API can significantly boost the chances that a customer will get your notification.

Furthermore, WhatsApp chatbots can handle the questions and requests that inevitably follow notifications. For example, customers can request a delayed delivery, add items to an order or change the delivery address automatically by responding to their WhatsApp notification.

It is easy to see how customer engagement is boosted by the combined effect of WhatsApp notification visibility and the rapid responses on offer from WhatsApp chatbots.

Three steps to your first WhatsApp marketing bot

It’s easier to get started with a WhatsApp chatbot than you may think. However, you do need to get a couple of things in place:

  • First, you need to get permission to use the WhatsApp API directly from the messaging platform. This can take up to four weeks and you’ll need to motivate your use of the API, explaining what you want to do with it. Your chatbot vendor can help you apply for WhatsApp API access.

  • Next, sign up with a chatbot provider that can help you build a WhatsApp chatbot. Consider the ease of use of their chatbot building tool and look out for advanced features including artificial intelligence and natural language processing as these capabilities make your bot more effective.

  • Finally, think long and hard about the best way to interact with your customers via WhatsApp. Remember, it’s a very personal communications channel so any mistakes in your approach will be noticed.

WhatsApp bots are a relatively new phenomenon, so everyone is still experimenting with the best ways to implement this incredible customer engagement tool.

Nonetheless, WhatsApp promises to be a powerful tool in the customer engagement arsenal.

Try Xenioo’s WhatsApp bot

Remember, your WhatsApp bot will only be as good as the underlying chatbot architecture that supports it.

Xenioo has built capable, intelligent and friendly chatbots for thousands of companies. We can apply our chatbot expertise to your company’s chatbot requirements too and make sure that it delivers on WhatsApp’s unique customer engagement promise.

Best of all, it’s free to try the Xenioo chatbot for WhatsApp.

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