Aug 07 3 Chatbot Questions to Consider Before Building a Branded Chatbot
With any new innovation, it’s important to take a step back and ask some strategic questions before diving into development of the new technology. Chatbots are no exception. That’s why we’ve developed three chatbot questions to align on internally that will help save you time, money, and hopefully a lot of headache.
Let’s get started.
1) What Consumer Need Will Your Brand’s Chatbot Fulfill?
As I mentioned in our How to Build a Chatbot Strategy webinar, it’s extremely important before building your chatbot to consider your target audience needs and how your particular chatbot can help fulfill these needs.
The following are a few examples to demonstrate the variety of chatbot use cases inspired by varying customer needs:
- Providing Helpful Recommendations
- Answering Frequently Asked Questions
- Helpful Updates or Status of Products/Services (Shipping Updates, Etc.)
- Answering Specific Questions
- Access to Exclusive Content, Deals, Information
- Staying Connected to a Favorite Brand
- Receiving Timely, Relevant Content
- Introduction to Helpful/Needed Products or Services
- Providing Entertaining Content
- Novelty or Short-Term Entertainment/Fun
- Developing a Deeper Connection to Brand/Artist/Media
- Hosting Time-Limited Promotions
- ….and more
Finally, consider how your chatbot can help fulfill a specific consumer need possibly better than other tools like your website, social media content, e-mail, or other marketing efforts.
2) What 1-3 Things Will This Chatbot Do Well?
Before building a chatbot, it’s important to clarify the chatbot’s main purpose and function by asking yourself, “What one-to-three things will this chatbot do well?
Just as website builds have a tendency to take a life of their own, the endless possibilities of chatbots also require a brand to focus their chatbot in a few key areas or risk a chatbot that is mediocre at best.
While the process of limiting to 1-3 main areas may feel limiting – the process of focusing, narrowing, and clarifying the purpose of the chatbot will ensure a strong value proposition of the chatbot to the end customer.
Having trouble defining these areas? Ask yourself the converse question: “What will this chatbot NOT do well?”
These questions are helpful in planning, but also helpful to gain internal alignment within your organization. This will hopefully avoid a Frankenstein approach to building your bot.
Remember this: the more clarity and focus you can have in upfront planning on what your chatbot will do and how it will meet your customer’s needs – the easier it will be to promote and gain user adoption once it is built.
3) What Level of Investment for the Chatbot Build and Long Term Maintenance?
Just with any new initiative, the level of investment often follows the organizational priority and will have a direct impact on how you build your chatbot and who you decide to partner with.
In our research of the top chatbot vendors, we noticed a flooded marketplace. Some chatbot vendors lure you in with”free” self-serve platforms and give you a customer service chatbot to help guide you through the build. Others won’t even pick up the phone unless you have $100k and a sexy brand logo to add to their website.
So, it’s helpful to consider the following questions before you enter the confusing world of navigating vendors or agency partners:
- What is my budget for the planning and build of the chatbot? (If you have no clue – define budget incremental amounts you may be comfortable with like up to 25k, 50k, or over 100k to help guide you directionally)
- What resources can I devote to this in the initial set-up and planning?
- What resources will this particular chatbot require after the initial set-up?
- What platforms do I need this chatbot to support?
- What support do I need for planning, architecting, and testing and learning from this chatbot?
- What is my timeframe for this chatbot? Is it ongoing or project/campaign-based?
To help you further navigate which chatbot vendors are right for your business need, our team has compiled a new whitepaper ranking chatbot vendors based on price, features, and customer support.