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Quick wins for businesses using messengers

Many businesses still have no idea what all the buzz about messengers and bots is these days. During the last couple of years, messengers became so popular that they even surpassed Social Media in terms of active users - nowadays there are more monthly active users on messengers than on traditional Social Media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or Instagram combined.

Even more, messengers are the preferred channel for many people to stay in touch with family and friends and lately even with businesses, therefore becoming a great way to get in touch with your customers.

Bots or chatbots are a perfect way to make use of these messaging channels by building intelligent virtual assistants on top of messengers. But building these smart chatbots is also a big challenge for many companies. The good news is not every business needs a full-blown chatbot to step up its game on messengers.

Here are a few quick wins and best practices for businesses who want to be available on messengers for their customers and don't know anything about bots and messaging platforms yet:

1. Let your users know that you are available on their favorite channels

People love messengers, but for communication with businesses, they often fall back to more traditional channels like email or phone. That's often because many customers still look up the contact details of businesses on their website.

Add your messaging channels to your contact details on your website so that your customers know that they can reach out to you on messengers. This simple change will help you establish your messaging channels as communication channels.

Contact widget on chatbotconf.com

Add messengers to your website

2. Set up the Welcome Screen for a perfect first impression

The Welcome Screen is kind of your profile page on messengers and the first thing users see when searching and selecting your account before starting to message.

The Welcome Screen can usually be set in the profile settings of your messaging account, for example in Messenger through the Facebook Page settings, in Telegram through the @Botfather account which helps you set up your bot.

Welcome Screen on Messenger and Telegram

The Welcome Screen as it looks like on Messenger and Telegram

3. Set a Conversation Menu

A Conversation Menu or Persistent Menu is a menu which is always accessible by the user during a conversation. It can be seen as a selection of top-level actions, which gives the user a possibility to quickly access information through auto responder or even websites which directly open up within the conversation.

Depending on the messaging network you have around 5-75 actions available. Unfortunately, these menus can only be set programmatically and not through the interface the messengers provide, but any non-programmer can do that easily with tools such as oratio.

Conversation Menu on Messenger, Viber, Telegram and Kik

A Conversation Menu on Facebook Messenger, Viber, Telegram and Kik

4. Reply instantly with an automated Welcome Message

A Welcome Message can be send immediately after the user starts the conversation. Sending this kind of message lets the user know that on the one hand the channel is maintained and that someone will take care of her or his request, on the other hand it's also a great opportunity to provide information of what the user can expect on this channel. For example, support hours or an approximate time the user can expect an answer.

Welcome Message on Viber

An automated Welcome Message as instant reply on Viber

5. Reduce initial response time with smart automation

Messengers are easy and fast, that's why people love these channels. But as a business it's not always possible to get back to every user in time. That's why you should not only set up a Welcome Message, you can also give the user the possibility to discover solutions to their questions or problem by serving your FAQs as automated replies to these inquiries.

This can easily be done by using the Automate feature by oratio for example.

Don't forget that there should always be a human fallback option or a way for the user to reach out to a real person or your support team!

Human Takeover on Messenger

A Human Takeover performed in Messenger

Further readings