Measuring chatbot results: Are we there yet?

Chat bots are the new shiny toys fascinating the world of marketing. Artificial intelligence powered, this application stimulates conversations between the tech side and the human world.

In fact, it is safe to say in days to come most of our customer service interactions will no longer be with humans but rather polished sounding chatbots. A Forrester Research that going forward this year, there is a greater than 300% increase in investment in artificial intelligence compared to 2016.

And clearly these devices are handy. They reduce customer support cost and open up a direct dialogue with customers.

A recent study by Zenith also said these devices pave “the way for marketing and sales to open new revenue channels and as such, there is great opportunity for brands to create personalised recommendations for the consumer based on insights obtained from a trail of chats.”

Speaking at the Digital Marketing conference in Indonesia on the matter, Krishnadeep Baruah, vice president, Asia Pacific, at BBM agreed that the help of chatbots, brands can efficiently reach out to consumers and interact with them to answer standard questions in a particular way.  However, with the space being a relatively new one, the points of measurement are not yet completely carved out, he said.

Baruah admitted that at this point, “The hard result is difficult to measure. But the customer experience it provides makes it special.”

He cited the example of how chat bots allows e-commerce websites to interact with retailers and consumers alike on a real time basis.  He explained that the key aspect of chat bots is its ability to deliver efficient client servicing and fuelling this new phenomenon of using bots is the growing number of active internet users and social media users.

In view of this how can brands leverage on this platform to ensure efficient marketing?

The Zenith study urged brands to first need to determine who they are trying to reach and define the precise vertical (commerce, content or service) the bot will operate in.

“It’s important to limit the scope of what your chatbots can do by focusing on a particular product or service to start with. Then, slowly expand the chatbot’s knowledge base by feeding it more relevant information over time,” the study said.

Moreover, to provide a good user experience, a bot needs to have a good user Interface, as well as have the intelligence to conduct two-way conversations with a wide audience in real time.

Baruah also added brands keep these following aspects must keep in mind:

Appropriate platforms

Firstly, most of the consumers are found online. Hence, he urged advertisers and marketers must think about the appropriate platform to appropriately reach out to them.

“Consider how you will integrate your service offerings and discoveries into messaging apps,” he said.

Think of metrics

Secondly, chat bots will dominate two arenas.

“While it will dominate the usage and time spent by consumers on this platform, it will also dominate the “sessions” which are a key to both advertisers and marketers. These two metrics are important signifiers for tech companies that want to keep audience attention for as long as possible and bring in potential advertising dollars,” he added.

Pick out key players

Thirdly, messaging apps are fragmented by countries. He therefore explained the need to understand who the leaders are in your specific market and engage with them accordingly.

Get real time insights

Fourthly, while he acknowledged that there has been a significant change in the way social media is consumed, he said, “Media is now being integrated into chat apps to discover real time insights.”