The potential of chatbots is growing rapidly with technological advances. Marketers need to tap into the right areas of application to benefit from the intelligent helpers. Which these are and how the B2B sector can benefit.
The lead machine
According to the latest report “State of Inbound 2018”, the conversion of leads for 57 percent of marketers is the top priority for the next twelve months. Used wisely, chatbots can help achieve this goal. For example, Opel uses its “Chad” to offer test drives at Opel dealers in the vicinity of potential customers based on location and preferences and to lure them into business. Similarly, as part of their content marketing, companies can use a simple but effective assistant for B2B lead generation. If a potential customer is interested in a particular topic, a chatbot can work out in dialogue which content from his own repertoire might be relevant to him. Based on this, he can offer the appropriate e-book from the content library and guide him to a landing page. There the potential customer exchanges his contact data for the offer, and the chatbot has independently generated a lead. In this way, HubSpot has achieved very good results with a click-through rate of 15-20 percent.
The customer whisperer
By connecting to a Product Information Management (PIM) database, the chatbot can access even more information. In this way, he becomes a digital shopping assistant. If a customer is looking for a particular product, the chatbot can replace the cumbersome navigation and confusing search filters and simply deliver the appropriate results by voice input. This procedure is demonstrated by “Emma” by Zalando. If the shopping assistant then learns which properties a customer prefers, the results will become more and more precise and relevant. What is offered in e-commerce can also make sense for B2B companies with a broad and highly differentiated product portfolio and optimize the customer experience with such an individualized shopping experience. This increases the efficiency in customer acquisition and retention sustainable. But not only as a sales support, but also in customer service, a chatbot can provide real added value. According to the survey “Artificial intelligence is everywhere”, 40 percent of users are open to artificial intelligence support. This value even rises to 53 percent, if it concerns simple concerns. No wonder, because equipped with information on common standard concerns of customers, a chatbot can answer many inquiries quickly and easily independently – around the clock, even outside normal business hours.
Your friend and helper
Last but not least, the smart helpers can also provide support in everyday marketing. Chatbots developed specifically for marketing and sales, such as the “GrowthBot”, can research currently discussed topics and background information. In addition, he can, for example, create blog posts and, in conjunction with analysis tools, provide information about their own marketing performance. The skills of the smart assistants are constantly evolving, so that marketers can look forward to ever better functions and a relief in the marketing routine.
Many trends are leaking from B2C to B2B marketing and while many are still looking for applications, clever B2B marketers should build on best practices and develop chatbots for their own marketing strategy. Not only does the power of smart bots grow, it’s also becoming easier for companies to develop chatbots themselves. There are already simple tools that companies can use to set up their own chatbot by dragging and dropping. Therefore, marketers should not lose time and seize the opportunities for an innovative and immediate customer experience.