The economic opportunities through the use of chatbots are great: internal as well as external workflows at various points in the company can be significantly relieved, sales increased and costs reduced through scalability and automation.
But what are chatbots actually and how can they be integrated in the company?
The digital application enables an automatic dialogue via text or voice with the user. As a digital assistant, the chatbot takes over standardised and repetitive tasks in particular and thus relieves employees. Thanks to Natural Language Processing (NLP) – a subfield of Artificial Intelligence (AI) – chatbots can process and read human speech and respond to it in a direct dialogue in natural language.
This may sound a little abstract at first, thus we have listed ten concrete application examples for the successful use of chatbots:
1. Customer Service | “First Line of Defence”
Customer support usually ties up a lot of manpower. Customers want to receive answers directly when they have questions about a product – without long waiting times and preferably 24/7. Companies can rarely guarantee this availability with consistent quality. The use of chatbots helps to relieve service staff by automatically answering frequent queries such as FAQs. In addition to 24/7 availability, the chatbot can show its strengths especially when there is an increased volume of enquiries. First-level queries can be easily answered via chatbots in an automated way, which makes customer service scalable, reduces costs and leads to growing customer satisfaction. More complex concerns are pre-qualified for second-level support. Customer service thus has more time to devote to customer interactions, where individual advice and the human element are crucial.
2. Lead generation | Jackpot thanks to chatbots
Addressing customers individually is crucial for marketing and sales activities to convert prospects into potential buyers, known as leads. Thanks to the use of a chatbot, the customer journey can be used efficiently, making lead generation a no-brainer. A lead funnel example could be: A user is shown a customized advertisement on social media and then starts a dialogue with the chatbot. Unnoticed, the interested party is guided through predefined questions during the interaction in order to individually adapt the product offer according to his preferences. Due to the personalized content, the interest is further increased and the user passes on his personal data to the chatbot. Zack – lead generated and the sales team can start with the acquisition activities.
3. IT Service Helpdesk | Internal First-Level Support
The digitisation of a company also means a high level of technical processes and the use of corresponding hardware and software. To ensure smooth IT operations, possible malfunctions must be solved quickly. A well-rehearsed and well-functioning IT helpdesk is therefore a success factor of digitisation. Simple and recurring requests, such as resetting a password or authorization requests, can tie up important capacities for more complex issues. A chatbot relieves the IT helpdesk team by storing FAQs or standard queries as a database and thus automatically processing tickets with recurring topics. Without waiting times, internal employees receive direct feedback on their enquiry. A chatbot can thus be an important part of a well-thought-out digitisation strategy.
4. Data and knowledge platform | Internal communication
A company bundles a large amount of data, information and knowledge. With the help of a chatbot, these data volumes can be efficiently organized, structured and made available. Internal company information is often obtained via the intranet. Here, the employee can use the chatbot as support, for example, to get the answer to his or her question faster via dialogue, e.g. the telephone number of the colleague from the other team. In this way, employees receive information about relevant work processes, structures and internal news around the clock. In addition, it is possible to integrate the chatbot in several languages in order to make the same information base easily accessible to colleagues abroad.
5. Conversational Marketing | A modern Customer Journey
By integrating a chatbot, companies offer customers on their website the opportunity to contact them directly and conduct personalised communication in real time – regardless of time and place. Live chats, messenger services or other digital tools are used for this purpose to answer customers’ concerns. Interested parties can start a conversation in the chat in an uncomplicated and non-binding way without having to click through countless sub-pages to get the relevant information. Through the chatbot given queries, insights on products or services and individually adapted information as well as offers, the communication becomes an authentic experience for the consumer and a valuable customer relationship is built. This positive customer journey clearly sets the company apart from the competition.
6. HR department | Onboarding process
Joining a new company is often a challenge. New colleagues, systems and processes to learn. Resources to take employees and applicants by the hand are scarce, and frustration is quickly high for the new employee, especially in such a phase of professional change. A chatbot as a companion during the onboarding phase makes integration easier for the employee and the company. It can answer frequently asked questions, provide information about company-specific features and actively give the employee important information about processes in the company. Standardised chatbots can also be used efficiently for recruiting in the selection of suitable applicants, thus saving the resources of the HR team.
7. Inspirational bots | Cooking with chatbots
Consumers are not always looking for products and services on company websites, but also for inspiration and entertainment. This can be done, for example, through inspiration bots such as recipe chatbots. Food producers can thus provide their customers with suggestions for recipes by specifically asking for certain criteria such as ingredients, preparation time, etc. The matching shopping list for downloading is, of course, sent directly with the recipe.
8. Lottery bots | Let the games begin
Competitions are a great tool to achieve a high level of engagement with the community, increase awareness and generate new leads. The integration of a chatbot is simple and efficient here. For example, answer options can be displayed as buttons via a messenger, allowing for quick, intuitive and interactive participation. Through the additional integration of various media, such as images and videos, the user experience is improved and the company has the opportunity to present their product in the best possible way.
9. Theme bots | With chatbots through the Corona pandemic
Certain topics are ideal for integrating a chatbot. This can provide the user with current information on the specific topic and thus bring him up to date quickly and easily.
the Corona chatbot from e-bot7 for example, provides information on current figures, data and facts to help companies, employees and customers quickly find all relevant COVID-19 information. Official sources such as the WHO, the CDC and the Robert Koch Institute are used for this and the information is updated regularly. The use of weather chatbots is also very popular. Via a messenger, the chatbot plays out the current weather forecast and provides additional information about the weather, for example a daily pollen count report or the water temperatures for coastal locations.
10. Complaint management | Digital support with the patience of a saint
If a product or service does not meet the customer’s expectations, he usually turns to the company with his frustration and displeasure. Here, the chatbot can be a sustainable relief for complaint management. In real-time – without waiting for hours in hotlines – the dissatisfied customer can start communication and express their concerns. Through predefined processes and answers, the chatbot can already intercept a large part of the complaints and appease the customer through the quick response time and the understanding shown. Moreover, a chatbot cannot react emotionally to negative overreactions from customers but offers consistently high quality with angel patience. If it is a more complex complaint, the customer is forwarded to a customer support employee who now has more time for individual complaints due to the relief of the chatbot.