Everywhere you look, there’s info on Facebook ads: courses, how to’s, books, and even membership clubs. But if you want to be really cutting-edge, you’ll want to master the next stage in Facebook marketing: Facebook messenger chatbots.
Little by little, Facebook is chipping away at other messaging platforms and moving their users to Facebook Messenger. If they keep it up, by the end of 2017 there will be as many people on Messenger (currently 900 million) as Facebook (1.674 billion). But, counterintuitive as that strategy seems (why split resources on two fronts) that is all part of Mark Zuckerberg’s master plan.
Why Facebook Messenger Is Important
By relentless understanding of marketer needs, Zuckerberg has managed to convince marketers to move gigantic budgets from traditional advertising to Facebook in just a few years. As proof, according to eMarketer, digital ad spending will surpass TV Ad spending by early next year. In just a few more years, marketing budgets will be predominantly digital, while traditional TV and Radio advertising will follow in the red ink drenched footsteps of newspaper ads.
But Zuckerberg is just getting started. And he is doubling down on his plan to monetize Facebook by delving into the foggy world of artificial intelligence (AI) in order to have computer software programs called bots, take over sales and customer service functions on Facebook’s Messenger platform. This has profound consequences not only for Facebook’s bottom line but for marketers as well.
What Facebook Messenger Bots Can Do For You
While it’s still very early, marketers are experimenting with sending leads directly to facebook messenger, where they’ll interact with bots. So far, most bot software or programs are a series of pre-programmed questions. When the lead clicks the yes button, they get the next message, feeding them to the next step in the funnel.
Imagine the future for network marketers: generation of leads sent straight to bots who do the closing. Automated closing would leave more time for increasing lead generation, which leads to increased income.
Bots will be like email auto sequences, with a much faster conversion rate.
Why Facebook is Testing Bots
Now, certainly for Facebook, this is much more about extracting marketing dollars than it is about breaking new ground in software development. Because by studying user’s interactions with these bots, Facebook will continue to build their understanding of how consumers are interacting with brands and gain additional insight into what products they like and content they consume. That can only mean more value to marketers and thus more dollars for Facebook.
“We are testing if business bots can re-engage people on threads with sponsored messages, it’s a small tiny test,” said David Marcus, Facebook Messenger’s Chief, claiming that they’ll learn more through the “communications and interactions over time with all the businesses and services you need to access every day.”
Will Bots Work?
In short, marketers will have a virtually unlimited supply of customers to target using free bot labor. We’ll watch how this unfolds, but it’s something every marketer needs to pay attention to now because the bots are coming.
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