Subscribe to CIG Blog

Should I Use a Chatbot to Generate Leads for My B2B Site?

The word “bot” has a negative effect on modern American culture. From annoying telephone bots that call in the middle of the night to fraudulently demand money from supposed government agencies to Hollywood films that feature killer robots with lasers, the term bot seems to have nothing good associated with it.

But robots and AI actually have a lot of positive potential. In the future, bots will be able to conduct surgery more steadily than the most dedicated human, and already AI is aiding overworked lawyers in case research and other paralegal tasks.

How Chatbots and AI Can Benefit Your Business

Similarly, artificial intelligence is helping small businesses with many functions of their business, including chatbots for lead generation and chatbots for sales. Far from being used as intrusions on your client's free time, or as a replacement for human employees, chatbots are enabling small businesses to compete successfully with larger organizations, and at a minimal price.

For example, at larger companies, customers regularly visit the company's website at all hours of the day or night, asking questions about that company's products and if the company can accommodate them, due to the fact that they have someone checking the website 24 hours a day and 7 days a week. If the large company can't find anyone in America who is able to check the website at 3AM EST, then the company will contract with employees in another country who will be happy to oblige.

However, until recently, smaller companies were at a disadvantage in this scenario. Unless the owner wanted to stay awake nearly 24 hours a day, he or she could not answer the random question from a potential client at 3 AM. Hiring employees for those hours could also be expensive.

Enter the chatbot. A chatbot can be programmed to answer basic questions about your business and is available at all hours of the day and night. Imagine telling your business clients that you have basic 24-7 tech support, without the heightened cost! This chatbot use case is proving to be advantageous for all businesses and even comes with some unforeseen benefits.

The Chatbot as Salesman

While it may seem as if chatbots would have limited functionality on a website, nothing could be further from the truth. A chatbot is actually an efficient little salesman, and the chatbot conversion rate can be as high as 50% in some cases. Read more about a chatbot use case here. When used correctly, a chatbot could even be considered a leadbot.

Apparently, what's happening is that people enjoy communicating via messaging apps and texts. From WhatsApp to iMessage to Slack, people are increasingly using messenger apps as their primary means of communication. Therefore, when they come across a chatbot, they simply slip into a receptive, texting mode. The chatbot seems unobtrusive in this situation and may even be seen as pleasant. Chatbots for sales are not unusual, and in fact, can be very handy.

The Cost of Chatbots

Even better, the cost of chatbots can be absolutely free. There are a variety of apps on the Internet which anyone can download in order to create a chatbot. Most of these apps also require no programming experience, so a small business owner can be up and running with a chatbot in a matter of hours. This blog, by The Startup, features simple instructions on downloading and creating a chatbot.

Cautions about Chatbots

As with any new technology, there are some issues regarding chatbots used in B2B marketing that the savvy business owner should take into consideration before using this new technology. First of all, enough information should be given to the chatbot for it to comprehend the typical question asked by a lead. An ignorant chatbot is just as annoying as an ignorant employee.

Also, intrusive use of chatbots should be avoided. “Cold” messages using Chatbots, in which a lead is contacted via message with no sign of prior interest, should be avoided. Cold calling has essentially destroyed telephone landlines as a means of communication, and messaging apps are too valuable to marketers to risk in the same way. Also, certain messaging apps restrict “cold messaging,” and if a business owner insists on randomly texting people about their products, they may very well be banned from the messaging service for life.

The Chatbot: A Useful Ally

While there should be some caution in using chatbots, as with any other technology, the potential for chatbots to improve B2B marketing should not be underestimated. From acting as a 24-7 basic tech support center to helping any business generate leads, chatbots are proving to be a crucial part of any small business. Even if the business you manage decides not to make use of chatbots, your competitors certainly will.

Chat with us about Chatbots, or about any marketing topic, by clicking here!

Author: Aaron Dyck - SVP Clover Services Group

I am focused on helping companies in Canada and the United States grow their businesses through digital marketing and working with their sales teams to ensure they bring incredible value to each conversation.

Subscribe to CIG Blog

Information
Close
Information
Close
Information
Close
 
Close

 
Close

INFORMATION
Close

Are you sure you want to logout?

INFORMATION
Close

Press OK to switch region to Clover Imaging Group

Multiple choices
Close

This item is available for outright sale or exchange purchase.
Please choose below.

Retrieve account data
Close
To retrieve your login data, enter your email:
 
Please wait...
Loader
Information

Thank you for your interest in CIG! Due to the robust functionality on our website, we can only support the most current web browsers. We recommend upgrading your browser to the latest version of Internet Explorer, Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox.

Information

Your session will expire in 5 minute(s).


Information

Your session has expired. You will now be redirected back to the home page.


Error retrieving data
Close
Thank you
Close
Video
Close
Video
Close
Video
Close
Video
Close
Upload logo
Close

Allowed format: .jpg, .png, .bmp; Max:1024x768px; Min:590x307px.

Shipping Information ()

Close
INFORMATION
Close

Your document is being created. Please wait until the download initiates.


Terms and Conditions
Close
Shipping Address List View all addresses
Close
Click on the address to select it
Add new Ship-To address
Close
* Required Field
How it works?
Close

Click the green button "Create New User"

Fill out the form fields for your new user. Select which permissions your new user should have and assign a username and password. Click Save. You will receive an e-mail confirming the new user has been set up successfully. Follow this procedure to set up each new user.

After you have created a new user, the new user will receive an automated email with their new user name and password. They will be given instructions on how to change their password if they would like to choose their own. However, as an administrator, you will always have access to delete/edit users, view their profile information (including their password) and change their permissions.

If you need to edit a user, there are links beside each user to edit or delete the user’s profile.

If you delete a user, the user will now appear on the Deleted Users Page and you can Re-Activate at any time if you need to do so.

CIG Video
Close
Information
Close

Upload Terms and Conditions
Close

Allowed format: .pdf; Max file size: 5MB.

Upload Customer Logo
Close

Allowed format: .jpg, .jpeg, .png, .bmp; Max file size: 5MB.

Resubmit Historical Usage File
Close

Allowed Formats: .xls, .xlsx; Max file size: 5MB.