Chat marketing allows brands to automate two-way, interactive conversations in Instagram Direct Messages, Facebook Messenger, and SMS to grow their brand.
With the collapse of third-party cookies looming, businesses are shifting towards “owned” or first-party data. Chat marketing can play a crucial role in acquiring first-party data in a way that is compliant and is largely impervious to cookies and privacy issues in the ad space.
The global chatbot market was valued at USD 3.2 billion in 2020 and is expected to reach USD 14.9 billion by 2027, according to a recent study published by AllTheResearch.
It’s an exciting and untapped marketing channel for many brands, below we take a look at a few key players within the chat marketing industry helping lead this growth:
Natasha & Kyle Willis
Wife and husband duo, Natasha and Kyle Willis are popular public figures within messenger marketing circles having shared chat marketing insights on over 100 stages, alongside influencers like Richard Branson, Gary Vaynerchuk, and Randi Zuckerberg. The duo founded School of Bots, a leading training resource for creating successful chatbots.
“There’s a big shift in consumer behavior taking place when it comes to using messenger apps such as Facebook and SMS. They’re increasingly using messenger apps for more than just texts and that includes booking a reservation, doing research, scheduling a meeting, and buying a product. Revenue-facing chatbots can guide them down the funnel to an eventual sale. Clients, therefore, see a direct path to ROI and increased efficiency,” says Natasha.
Connect with Natasha on Linkedin
Josh is a product-focused tech founder with over 6 years of experience in conversational AI. Josh is the human behind Janis.ai, an AI assistant that helps you integrate Artificial Intelligence into your customer experiences.
“AI is good at some things and humans are always going to be better at other things and so if Janis can help you achieve anywhere between 20 and 80-percent automation, that’s a significant cost saving” explained Josh.
Connect with Josh on Linkedin
In his role as Head of Community at the leading bot-building platform Chatfuel, Andrew can be found regularly contributing to online discussions and assisting others with their chat marketing efforts.
Andrew is a strong advocate of using chatbots for customer support, “If I told you that your customer support complaint about a damaged product could be resolved in 30 seconds using a bot, versus 30 minutes just waiting to speak with a 1-800 representative, would you still prefer talking to a human? Customers care about getting their problem solved in a timely manner; they don’t care about the means a company uses to make that happen. Of course, bots and humans can peacefully coexist,” explained Andrew.
Connect with Andrew on Linkedin
The founder of Chit Chat Agency, a leading chat marketing, and bot development company based in the UK. Ryan oversees bot development and chat marketing strategies for leading brands and ambitious start-ups in over 10 countries.
“As a leading chatbot development and chat marketing agency we’ve been lucky enough to develop long term partnerships with a diverse range of clients including food, financial, retail, travel and higher education brands. Despite the huge growth in messaging apps many brands’ marketing budget allocations do not reflect this shift in how people prefer to consume and communicate online. However, smart brands are beginning to realize the opportunities available on messaging apps such as Messenger, Instagram Direct, and WhatsApp to shape consumers’ decisions and experiences,” explained Ryan Dearlove.
Connect with Ryan on Linkedin
Kelly Noble Mirabella
Kelly is a regular on the international social media marketing speaking circuit and also the creator of the popular YouTube channel “Baby Got Bot”. The channel covers everything chatbots and Facebook Messenger marketing in a fun and easy to follow way.
Explaining the birth of Baby Got Bot, Kelly, said, “Truth be told, I am in love with digital marketing, but I fell even deeper head over heels in love when I met chat marketing. I am a total chat marketing geek. I live and breathe Messenger bots and all the cool bells and whistles that integrate with them. Naturally, I decided to take my skills as a trainer and match it with my love of chat marketing. This was when Baby Got Bot was born.”
Connect with Kelly on Linkedin
CJ is the founder of Tacobot, a US-based marketing agency that helps insurance brokers generate leads through bots.
When asked about the future of chatbots, CJ explained, “The insurance space has always been behind on all things tech, including social media. They still refer to social media as a “new” thing. Of all the social platforms, insurance is most behind on Instagram. The addition of the ability to use bots on Instagram should be a huge deal because it’s a very underutilized platform from an insurance perspective.”
Connect with CJ on Linkedin
The co-founder and CEO of ManyChat, the world’s leading messenger marketing platform. Despite being rejected by Y combinator a few times in 2015 it didn’t deter his pursuit to change the game as he realized that the way marketing channels evolve is always based on how human behavior evolves. Businesses can now use ManyChat to do marketing, sales, and support through Facebook Messenger, Instagram, and WhatsApp.
Currently, most businesses use Instagram to drive organic engagement and Instagram ads to get customers to their website, however, Mike strongly believes this will change over the next few years.
“You’re going to be driving Instagram Ads directly to a direct messaging experience, which you will be able to automate at scale. And then qualify those leads, and then nurture them, and then convert them to paying customers, and then to nurture them into repeat customers, etc.” explained Mike.
Connect with Mike on Linkedin
The shift to messaging platforms is changing how businesses communicate, and chatbots are quickly becoming the not-so-secret weapon of digital marketing. More and more consumers prefer to engage with brands via messaging channels they already use every day, whether to receive support, enter a giveaway, get a quote or ask questions, and many businesses have now realized the immense opportunities that messaging platforms provide.