There’s a real contender emerging in the digital marketing arena and it’s threatening to put the reigning champion, the Email Drip Campaign down for the count. Introducing the challenger: The Chatbot Marketing Funnel.
With the release of Facebook chatbots back in 2016, marketers began to realize the awesome potential of chatbot funnels to transform the way we market to our target audiences.
Email drip campaigns present problems in delivering targeted content to consumers that chatbot funnels seamlessly address.
Chatbots are AI-driven programs that allow marketers to automate customer interactions, nurturing leads through the marketing funnel without any actual human intervention.
Another benefit of AI chatbots sure to bring email drips to their collective knees is that they—much like human salespeople—organically learn and evolve with each interaction, that is, they build upon each previous interaction, improving their ability to interact naturally with customers and to address customer needs with each and every conversation.
A well-conceived chatbot strategy can help marketers to address some common issues that plague email funnel campaigns:
- You’re getting a ton of traffic (great!) but very few leads (not so great!).
- Your team is putting way too much energy into nurturing leads that have not been properly qualified.
- You’d like to find ways to move leads through your sales funnel in a way that is faster and more targeted.
Read on to explore three common problems that drive these issues, and to find out how a chatbot strategy—custom-designed for your business—can not only address the above three stressors but also a) dramatically increase your open rate, b) increase your sales leads, and c) increase your sales.
Problem #1: You’re Sending Too Few or Too Many Emails
Sending too few emails too infrequently can give potential customers time to forget all about your brand and start investigating other options.
Leads who have taken the initiative and signed up for email updates from you are interested in actually hearing from you and have probably put deciding where to procure the goods or services you are offering at the top of their to-do list. If you don’t engage these leads right away, you risk losing them to someone else who feels a greater sense of urgency.
Conversely, sending too many emails can irritate potential customers. Too many emails sent, or sent too frequently (say, several within a day) is no better than waiting to send an email blast until your leads have already forgotten that they had an interest in your brand in the first place.
The lead may get annoyed, become unreceptive to your marketing efforts and unsubscribe. Also, sometimes—although it shouldn’t happen—people are not even aware of how they ended up on your mailing list. It is best not to make them regret that they did.
Chatbot Fix: The strength of the chatbot strategy versus the email drip strategy lies in the fact that chatbot funnels are driven by customer interaction. This means that leads have voluntarily and explicitly initiated the move further down the funnel by making a conscious decision to continue interacting with your chatbot, so less need to be concerned about whether you are overwhelming customers with too many overtures.
Not only are the interactions customer-initiated, but your chatbot will be programmed to deliver real-time content with an immediacy that cannot be matched by a traditional email drip.
Timely interactions with your chatbot that address the customer’s pain points—and answer all of their most frequently asked questions—can move them down the funnel more quickly than email campaigns, and with much less wear and tear to the human members of your sales team.
This kind of devotion to nurturing potential customers that perhaps only bots have the resources to provide can greatly increase your number of qualified leads. We implemented a highly successful Facebook Messenger bot strategy for one of our clients that lead to a 116% increase in sales leads.
Problem #2: Overwhelming with Too Much Content All at Once
Most people do better with something akin to the content equivalent of fast food. They are overbooked and overwhelmed and need content that can be quickly and conveniently consumed on the run. If your emails are too long, or you are offering too many pieces of content in one email, you may further overwhelm an already stretched audience.
Chatbot Fix: This one is a super-easy fix. With AI chatbots, as customers move through your funnel, your chatbot organically suggests content that might interest specific segments of your audience. The organic conversational abilities of your chatbot thereby automatically do the job of segmenting your audience, offering them content—like webinars or ebooks—that is personally relevant and tailored to their specific needs in the moment.
This allows you to offer content that your customers truly want, exactly at the moment when they want it—and all in the course of natural, personalized conversations with your chatbot. No more worries about how much content is too much, just let your leads ‘take the lead.’
Problem #3: Your Subscribers Aren’t Opening Emails
After a brief period of initial interest, marketing emails can appear to potential leads like so much inbox white noise and they may cease to open your emails.
Chatbot Fix: Chatbot campaigns can deliver up a 98% open rate. Pause for reaction. Yep, that’s 98%. This is because chatbots deliver the kind of personalized experience that users prefer and make it effortless for marketers to collect data from users who interact with their chatbots.
This data organically drives future interactions and makes it easier to better target users for content and future offers that are perfectly aligned to their needs and preferences. The real-time flow of questions and answers automatically segments your audience so that they receive only the information that they specifically opt to receive in the moment, making them far more likely to open messages.
Wait, there Are How Many Chatbots on Facebook Messenger?
These examples underscore why chatbots are likely to be a go-to digital marketing strategy going forward. As of 2019, there are about 300K active chatbots on Facebook Messenger alone, and 40% of millennials interact with chatbots on a daily basis.
With millennials having solidly reached “the most important age for economic activity,” in other words, the age where they are starting businesses, starting families, and doing most of the consuming, they are a key demographic to consider when planning most future marketing strategies.
Want info about how chatbots can improve your metrics and transform your results? Contact us to find out more or engage with our chatbot on Facebook to explore how we use chatbots at Fanatics Media.