Over the past few years, usage of messaging apps – such as WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, Line, etc. – has exploded. Indeed, people are now using these apps more than they are social networks, and, increasingly, they are expecting to be able to communicate with brands via these channels, too.
(Image source: blog.drift.com)
A recent article in Venture Beat makes the point that chatbots are most definitely here to stay as an inbound marketing tool, and produces three revealing statistics as to why.
- 51% of people say a business needs to be available 24/7
- 4% of people would rather contact a business through messaging than phone
- 8% of people would rather contact a business via messaging than email
What’s more, eMarketer forecasts that messaging apps will be used by 65% of the entire global population by 2019, and, as such, the global chatbot market will grow exponentially.
(Image source: blog.drift.com)
Can You Make Your Own Inbound Marketing Chatbot?
Yes, you can! And you don’t even need to be a coding whiz-kid to do so either.
As with so many things these days, the process of building your own inbound marketing chatbots is being increasingly democratised, and there are already a number of great tools out there – some of them free! – that you can use to get started immediately.
And so, if you’ve decided that it’s high time that you began building a chatbot into your inbound marketing strategy, below we’ve listed five of the best tools and platforms we think you need to know about.
Let’s take a look…
5 Tools that Help You Create Chatbots for Your Inbound Marketing
The first thing you’ll see when you head over to the Chatfuel website are the words “Build a Facebook bot without coding”.
Now, of course, you will almost certainly have a business page on Facebook, and this makes Chatfuel one of the very best tools that you could hope to use for building yourself a round-the-clock inbound marketing presence on everyone’s favourite social network.
The website states that you can get a fully-functioning Facebook Messenger bot up and running in under 7 minutes. And indeed, you can!
Chatfuel guides you easily through a simple step-by-step process where you will map out your chatbot’s script, include links to take your customers through to the appropriate content on your website, and much more besides.
You can also start experimenting with Chatfuel for free, making it well worth a look.
[inline-form theme:blue title: Free eBook button:Download] 30 of the Greatest Lead Generation Tips [/inline-form]
Another great platform for building inbound marketing chatbots for Facebook is ChattyPeople – especially if you’re running an ecommerce operation.
There's no coding needed to start building your ChattyPeople chatbot, it is quick and easy to get started, and comes with a free plan for you to test it out with.
ChattyPeople is ideal for making a simple inbound marketing chatbot (and simplicity is key to successful chatbots), which you can deploy for the purposes of answering a whole range of customer service questions.
But if you want it to do a little more for you, then you will be walked through how to integrate the chatbot with Shopify, enabling you to monetize your Facebook business page even when you’re fast asleep at night. Pretty good, ay?
Another great chatbot creator for Facebook is Botsify – and once again, no coding skills are required to master this brilliant inbound marketing tool.
Smooch is a little different than what we’ve looked at so far on this list in the sense that it enables you to create inbound marketing chatbots that essentially act as a bridge between your business and messaging apps.
The bridge is created by sending all of your messenger chat notifications straight to the business app that you’re using. For example, if you’re using something like Slack for internal communications amongst your team, the Smooch chatbot will see to it that any customer communications coming from Line, Messenger, WeChat or what have you will be sent through to Slack (or Help Scout, Zendesk, Front, or whatever it is you’re using).
The result is that your inbound marketing team are able to answer all customer queries without having to leave the business app they’re using. Great stuff.
5. Beep Boop
Beep Boop is a platform for those who are in possession of coding skills, and who want to create a chatbot for their internal inbound marketing team on Slack.
You can use Beep Boop to enhance anything that you already do on Slack – which includes any customer service initiatives you have in place.
For example, you can create a Beep Boop chatbot to alert you to any incoming communications from your customers on your customer-facing message channels – be they from your website, Facebook Messenger or what have you. It’s even possible to configure your Beep Boop chatbot to interact with customers on your behalf – provided, of course, that you’ve got the coding skills (or the budget to hire someone who has) to programme the bot sufficiently.
No free plan with this one, but prices are very reasonable nonetheless.
Over to You
There’s no doubt that chatbots are transforming inbound marketing right here and now. And the great news is that already there’s a plethora of great tools and platforms out there that you can start to use to bring a cool chatbot experience to your customers right away – and many don’t even require you to know anything about programming. Take a look at the tools on this list for creating inbound marketing chatbots – there are plenty here that can have you up and running before the day is out.