Our latest guest on the #GoWithThePro Twitter chat was entrepreneur and digital marketer Mark Bertulfo.

Like most people Mark’s juggling a lot of things at the same time so he decided to create a few systems to minimise the workload. That’s where he discovered building Chatbots for businesses. Here he tells us, in his own words, how you too can get started with Chatbots.

Q1. Why are Chatbots so popular right now?

Since we live in a world of contant digital transformation, everything revolves around mobile and AI. And chatbots are one of the simplest and most recognisable example of Artificial Intelligence.

You can see them on most platforms that require constant customer service. Answering customer queries, gathering data, organising meetings, and the list goes on.

Q2. How can we use Chatbots in our digital marketing?

One of the widely used method is building a funnel out of chatbots. Like all funnels, the chatbot guides the audience towards the bottom by conversation, engagement, and demos or testimonials. You can put this in your page’s send message button or as a widget in your website.

You can also build sequences that tie in with Facebook ads. Use comments in posts as triggers, so when people interact with your post/ad, they automatically get engaged by the bot and the sequence you built.

And the best thing about this is that everyone who interacts with your bot automatically becomes a subscriber. That’s like having a hyper active email list! You can then send broadcasts or nurture certain groups, or whatever you want. As long as they’re subscribed, you can market to them over and over without additional costs.

You get higher open rates than email too. Chatbots won’t replace emails by a long shot but you can pair it with your email marketing to improve the latter’s open/click-thru rate.

Q3. What are the benefits of using Chatbots on our website and Facebook Messenger?

There are several benefits. One simple benefit is improving customer care. They can help prospects throughout the buying purchase with very minimal or no supervision.

It saves cost. Having a PRO account will set you back a couple of dollars but it’s way cheaper than hiring a team of VAs to handle your customer service. It also prevents human inconsistencies.

Chatbots help you gain customer insights. By creating a sequence for feedback and review, you can ask for feedback about your performance and even redirect people to your page’s review section if they’re raving about you.

They get rid of repetitive tasks too. If you already have a system in place, a bot can help implement that so you can focus on other things that might need your attention.

Q4. Many of our members are social media freelancers or digital marketers. How can we get started with Chatbots with limited time and budget?

There are two ways I can think of. First is that you can do some research, get a good course about it, open an account, and try building it yourself.

The other way is get a bot builder, tell the, what you want and what it’s for and pay him to do it for you. At the end of the day, this saves more time and money.

Q5. What makes a good Chatbot experience for the user?

It largely depends on the brand. But I personally make sure that the bots I build make the conversation enjoyable without going out of context or missing the objective.

This is conversational marketing after all. So the bot needs to get the conversation going and make it feel as if the user is talking to someone, not something. If the bot can achieve that while guiding the user to the funnel/buying process, then it has served its purpose.

Q6. What tools do you recommend for people who want to build their own bot?

There are several platforms available but I use primarily two. Manychat and Chatfuel. I like Manychat for the ease of use and price.

You will also need Google Sheets mostly for data gathering or list building.

And integrators like Zapier and Integromat. This is used to get data out and pull data in. Luckily, some of the more common integrations are already native in Manychat so you don’t need an outside integrator.

Q7. How can we create the right personality and tone of voice for our Bot?

Name your bot or get a name from the client. When you can see the bot, or at least a representation, you can picture how it should converse.

Start with the questions and try to answer them as the brand/client would. Depending on the brand, you can add images, videos, or even GIFs to emphasise the message or lighten the mood. At the end of the day, you have to build it and let other people try it to see what needs to improve. Get it out there and let a test group have a whack at it.

There is a bit of copywriting needed but not as hardcore as writing emails. Just try it and ask a crowd to test it. Then tweak it again until you get the tone you’re looking for.

Has this inspired you to give Chatbots a go? Join us in the #GoWithThePro Facebook group and let us know!