Social Media Chatbots: How to Automate Your Messaging Channels

November 21, 2022
social media chatbot integration

There's no denying that social media is ubiquitous.

Statistics indicate that the number of social media users worldwide hit 4.62 billion in 2022.

And, as 80% of consumers now use social media to contact brands, there's an opportunity to make this channel a lucrative tool for chatbot marketing, digital engagement, and customer service.

It's why more and more businesses are choosing to use chatbots as a social media customer support tool.

In fact, there are currently more than 300,000 business chatbots on Facebook Messenger alone.

But how exactly can your business benefit from a social media chatbot?

And what steps can you take to get the most out of a customer service chatbot for social platforms?

In this article, we'll provide the answers you need. We'll cover:

  • What are social media chatbots
  • The key benefits of deploying a social media chatbot
  • Top tips for social media chatbot success
  • How to get started with a chatbot for social media
AI virtual agent conversational chatbot

What are social media chatbots?

Social media chatbots are AI-powered tools that provide automated customer support across multiple social media channels.

These systems can be deployed on social platforms (e.g. Facebook, Instagram, etc.) to handle large volumes of FAQs and basic problems without intervention.

As well as providing automated customer support, these virtual assistants can also generate leads, provide online personalization, and gain valuable insights by collecting customer data.

They can even route customer service requests to the most appropriate agent/department by gathering the initial details of the query/issue before escalating.

This not only saves time for your agents but also guarantees that your customers receive the best service for their specific situation - without having to repeat themselves to multiple representatives.

happy customer using laptop

How deploying a social media chatbot benefits businesses

Implementing a social media chatbot can benefit both your business and your customers in numerous ways.

After all, there's a reason why 80% of businesses are expected to be using a chatbot by the end of 2022.

Let's take a look at each of the key benefits in turn.

Be where your customers are

Chatbots that integrate with social media allow you to be there for your customers on all of their favorite platforms and messaging apps.

These digital channels are already an integral part of everyday life and communication for most consumers - so why not meet your customers where they already are?

By deploying a social media chatbot, you'll do just that.

You'll also increase engagement and create a more convenient online journey for your customers - it's a win-win.

With Talkative, you can deploy our AI-powered social media chatbot to engage with customers via Facebook Messenger, Instagram, WhatsApp, and SMS.

chatbot interactions

Stay on top of your social channels 24/7

One of the most significant benefits of a social media chatbot is that it can immediately assist customers at any time of day - regardless of your operating hours.

As a result, your social media accounts and channels will never be neglected.

Instead, customers reaching out to you on social media will receive the same level of assistance as those who contact you via other customer contact channels (e.g. your website's live chat).

Consequently, you'll be able to deliver a consistent customer experience at every digital touchpoint.

social media chatbots messaging

Build customer relationships

One of the best things about using social media as an engagement channel is that it allows businesses to connect with customers in a more personal way.

This helps to build authentic customer relationships by fostering an emotional connection between consumers and your brand.

By adding a chatbot to your social media presence, you'll provide an additional way for customers to engage and connect with you on these platforms.

This strengthens customer relationships by allowing them to get instant support and information through the channels that are most convenient for them.

Advanced social media chatbots can even be trained to provide personalized experiences - another boost for customer relations and building brand loyalty.

customer conversation with agent

Save time, reduce costs, improve efficiency

A chatbot brings the power of automation to digital customer service.

Not only can this cut operational costs by up to 30%, but it can also optimize efficiency by streamlining your social media customer service.

A social media chatbot saves time and takes the pressure off human agents by reducing their workloads.

In fact, chatbots are able to handle a complete customer interaction around 69% of the time.

This is because they're fully equipped to deal with FAQs and simple issues.

They can also easily guide customers to information that they might need for self-service.

Meanwhile, your human agents are left free to dedicate more time to complex queries and the customers who need them most.

customers waiting for support

Enjoy automated social media marketing

It's easy to think of chatbots as nothing more than a means for automated customer support.

But, when they're leveraged over social media platforms, they can also be a valuable digital marketing tool.

For example, you could utilize a social media chatbot to promote new offers, raise brand awareness, and capture leads.

Social media bots can also help you get to know your audience by collecting data on the customers who engage with them.

This information will prove extremely lucrative when it comes to targeted digital marketing.

Whatever your approach, a social media chatbot will empower you to combine chat marketing with your social media strategy.

social media mobile apps

Top tips for social media chat bot success

It's clear that the addition of a social media chatbot can be extremely beneficial for businesses.

But in order to enjoy these benefits, you need to take steps to ensure you're getting the most out of your chatbot.

Fortunately, we've compiled the top tips for social media chatbot success to help you get started.

chatbot analytics graphic

1. Enhance the human experience

Although automated support can be immensely helpful, it's important that your chatbot doesn't completely replace human agents.

Instead, a social media chatbot should augment the human customer service experience.

That's why it's essential that your social media chatbot can facilitate escalations to a human representative.

Fortunately, Talkative's social messaging chatbot can be trained to hand off to a real person whenever necessary - all thanks to  our live chat integration.

It means your social media customers will never be left with unanswered queries.

And, you’ll never miss out on the ability to generate leads or drive online sales.

customer hand and AI content hand

2. Choose the right kind of chatbot

When deploying a social media chatbot, you’ll be faced with a choice between a rule-based, "decision tree" chatbot or an AI-powered chatbot.

The easiest way to differentiate between the two options is to look at their capabilities.

A rule-based chatbot is programmed to respond to customer questions using decision trees and scripted responses - either previously scripted by you or drawn from your brand’s  knowledge base.

In most cases, rule-based chatbots require customers to choose responses from set phrases or keywords.

While this can be a great tool for basic triage, it also limits the scope of user input and therefore the questions that the chatbot can be asked.

AI-powered chatbots (a.k.a. virtual agents), by contrast, are designed to interact with customers in a conversational manner.

Rather than relying purely on scripted answers, a virtual agent uses machine learning and natural language processing (NLP) to understand a customer’s intent and respond in a more ‘human-like’ way.

An advanced AI-powered chatbot, like Talkative's Chatbot Advisor, can even ‘remember’ previous interactions, meaning it can learn to handle more and more customer queries as time goes by.

So, if you want to deliver more humanized support and an exceptional digital customer experience, an AI-powered virtual agent is the way to go.

But, if you just want to improve efficiency and give your customer advisors more time in a cost-effective way, a rule-based chatbot can still be a useful option.

Ultimately, the type of social media chatbot that’s right for you will depend on your individual goals and business needs.

WhatsApp, SMS, Twitter, Facebook Messenger

3. Proactively engage customers

If you want to maximize customer engagement with your social media chatbot, proactive customer service is key.

Proactive engagement occurs when a brand reaches out to a customer first, rather than waiting for them to initiate a conversation or ask for help.

For example, you could program your chatbot to automatically greet customers with a welcome message when they visit your social media page for a certain amount of time.

This sets a friendly tone and lets your customers know that help is available to them if they need it.

Alternatively, you could use your social media chatbot to proactively send repeat visitors a promotional code or discount.

This turns your social media chatbot into a tool for enticing customers and driving conversions.

By utilizing proactive chatbot support, you can engage more users and improve the customer experience by anticipating their needs.

chatbot conversation

4. Offer multilingual support

It's important to ensure that your social media chatbot is accessible to all of your customers - wherever they're based.

The ultimate way to achieve this is by choosing a multilingual chatbot that provides:

Fortunately, Talkative's innovative chatbot ticks all of these boxes and can cater to over a hundred different languages.

It means you'll be able to immediately engage and support all of your digital customers around the globe.

You'll also gain the opportunity to expand your customer base worldwide and capture leads overseas.

Want to get started with a multilingual chatbot straight away? ? Sign up for a free trial with Talkative today.

multilingual chat

5. Develop a chatbot personality

A top tactic for social media chatbot success is to make your bot likeable and enjoyable for customers to interact with.

You can achieve this by developing an engaging personality for your chatbot.

This will further bridge the gap between human and AI-powered support, thus enhancing the chatbot experience for your customers.

A compelling or unique chatbot personality can also be a great way to differentiate your brand from your competitors on social media.

Consider Domino's social media chatbot as an example.

Named 'Dom the pizza bot', this service allows customers to order pizza via the Facebook Messenger App.

As well as processing food orders, this chatbot also provides a fun user experience by conveying a humorous personality and even telling jokes.

In order to create a winning persona for your chatbot, start by having a brainstorming session.

Ask yourself the following questions:

  • What is your social media chatbot's key purpose?
  • What will it be used for most frequently?
  • What are you hoping to achieve by developing a personality for your bot?
  • How will your bot's personality reflect your brand image, style, and tone of voice?
  • What kind of experience do you want your customer to have?
  • Who is your target demographic?
  • What kind of customers will engage with your bot the most?

Once you have the answers to these questions, you'll be fully equipped to craft a personality for your social media chatbot that both appeals to your customers and helps you achieve your goals.

6. Collect customer feedback

Gathering and listening to customer feedback is critical for success in any business endeavor.

And your social media chatbot is no exception to this rule.

In fact, a chatbot can be a goldmine for information on customer perceptions and attitudes.

With this in mind, make sure your social media chatbot is programmed to ask customers to review and rate their experience.

This automated, in-the-moment feedback can be utilized to inform your chatbot strategy going forward.

Ultimately, you want to be certain that your social media chatbot adds value to your customer's experience.

As such, listening to their thoughts and actively seeking to improve is the key to optimal success.

customer attitudes

The takeaway: Getting started with chatbots on website & social media

A chatbot can be an excellent tool for social media customer service, marketing, and online sales.

With the tactics covered in this article, you can design a social media chatbot that improves the digital customer experience and increases engagement.

But if you want to get the most out of a social media chatbot, you need the right provider and platform to facilitate it.

And that’s where Talkative comes in.

With our virtual agent, you can take a deep dive into how your chatbots speak and act. This will help you to meet your business goals faster and provide a cohesive, on-brand experience.

Want your chatbot to drive conversions, increase lead generation, or improve customer engagement?

Whatever your needs, our intuitive and user-friendly chatbot builder will allow you to create your chatbot with ease.

In addition to a virtual agent, the Talkative platform also provides a complete suite of engagement channels plus deep integrations into systems like Salesforce and Mitel.

What's more, you'll be able to manage chatbot interactions, and all other customer conversations, within a single pane of glass.

Want to learn more? Book a demo with Talkative today, and start getting the most out of chatbot interactions.

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