It was predicted two years ago that message commerce would be a trend for the future. Marketing Week predicted that consumers will be able to get recommendations, make purchases, manage bookings, ask questions, and do a lot more from within their messenger apps.
However, the take up has been slower than expected. This can be attributed to the fact that marketers have spent too much budget too early by setting up chatbots without any clear purpose. Suddenly there was a competition and a rush to develop a messaging strategy rather than a marketing strategy; this is where the journey went slow.
The Salt and Sugar Experience
It’s not that all the brands had a bad experience leveraging chatbots to essential marketing tools, who can miss the progress made differentiators such as Lego, KLM, and Victoria Beckham that saw successful business results from a carefully planned use of the Facebook Messenger.
Often it is true when most brands enter the messaging space for the first time they will have fairly simple needs. According to Facebook, in customer service, for instance, 90% of queries can be solved from the top 10 questions. This study means that brands can achieve a lot with fairly simple automated messages, without going in for the higher end chat automation.
The Chatbot Trend is Here
In 2019, it is widely assumed that natural language processing (NLP) will reach a level of advancement that will finally make more complex applications look easy and possible to achieve. This trend will benefit not just chatbots but also its hugely promising but so far disappointing technology cousin voice assistants.
At the current levels, NLP still struggles to detect nuances in a word’s absolute meaning, which may be due to dialectal differences, lack of context or spelling and grammar errors. However, there have been progress and this field is developing quickly.
In November, MIT announced that its scientists had developed a technology that can self-learn language more like a baby than a machine. This technology will be taking in visual and situational information as well as linguistic meanings to help artificial intelligence understand and approximate human communication more closely.
Voice Search & SEO
Come the new-year and smartphones bundled with other smart devices will be leading to a lot more voice search in 2019 and beyond. In recent times, there have been valuable advances in the field of natural language processing and machine learning that have enabled virtual assistants to become much more insightful, intelligent and useful.
2018 saw almost one-third of the 3.5 billion searches voice-based on Google every day which were performed using mostly personal assistant devices, a trend which is here to continue. According to Comscore, an American media measurement and analytics company, by 2020, more than half of the total searches in the world will be voice-enabled searches where chatbots could be integrated into an application or social media platforms. Chatbots will be very valuable and help brands improve their customer services. This will be absolutely convenient as there will be no need for a human to coordinate conversations.
Besides, chatbots are quicker in performing tasks than humans and perform any data-related answers and take requests in the blink of seconds. Additionally, the bots also gather customer information that can be used to enhance the marketing strategy in the years to come.
The Bright Chatty Future Ahead
The customer service automation industry will see new heights into automated conversation and chances are bright that you will probably see more and more of chatbots and voice-controlled assistants in the nearest future. The industry expects that in the next 5 years, nearly 80% of business communications with the clients will be performed through bot messengers.
The awesome part about a chatbot and voice assistants continues to be that they can be combined with multiple apps to bring one awesome experience into reality. As a result, in a year’s time, the world could see brands taking the first baby steps towards creating chatbots and voice assistants that are more capable to understand and respond accurately to conversational requests and complex queries.
Eventually, the key takeaway will be a much improved customer experience and the ability for brands to be conversational. The new chatbot and voice assistant experience for the customer will be much smoother, which will be a win-win situation for stakeholders, the businesses and the ultimate consumer.