Make no mistake, Facebook Messenger has revolutionized how marketers can access and grow their audience on Facebook and websites that use many of Facebook’s extensions. Please understand that Facebook is not just one platform, it is actually a set of related properties. It also shares key parts of its functionality with third-party websites.
By doing so, Facebook extends its reach throughout the rest of the Internet. In fact, the Facebook ad network is second to Google’s ad network in terms of reach and size. If you want to drive a lot of free traffic to your website, you need to have a coherent Facebook strategy. Now that Facebook has launched Messenger and allowed it to operate with bots, this has presented a tremendous opportunity for online marketers as far as traffic generation and sales recruitment go.
In this post, I am going to teach you how Facebook Messenger works, how you can create bots that would work with Facebook Messenger so you can grow your audience, and most importantly, drive qualified traffic to your website.
An FB messenger bot is a piece of software that uses Artificial Intelligence to simulate conversations with potential and existing customers.
Using FB messenger bots enables ANY BUSINESS to possibly engage some of the1.3 billion FB Messenger monthly users
By 2018, FB had 300,000 active messenger bots, this is several times larger than the previous number and the number of bots is expected to multiply further. What are YOU doing to take advantage of this great opportunity to automate your engagement with your audience.
What is Facebook messenger and how can it help your business?
A few years back, Facebook announced that it was launching its new Facebook Messenger service. What was really interesting about this reboot of what was its internal messaging device is the scalability of the new messenger.
It can be automated, it can use scripts and, most importantly, it lends itself to bot technology. Usually, when people use messenger, they would click on somebody’s profile on their messenger application and initiate a text, voice or video chat with them.
In this respect, it’s not much different from other third party messaging platforms like WhatsApp, Viber, WeChat and others. What really distinguishes Facebook Messenger, let’s face it, is the fact that it is attached to Facebook. Facebook has billions of active users. It is a gateway to tremendous online visibility.
If you want your business to thrive, you only need to look no further than Facebook. Whatever interests your business caters to no matter how arcane, obscure or little known, there are sure to be people on Facebook who are interested in whatever it is you are promoting.
This is why Facebook is non-negotiable when it comes to online marketing. Whether you’re trying to generate traffic to the website of your local dental practice, or you provide a national service to people located all over the United States, Facebook can help you market your business.
Facebook Messenger is an important part of this marketing mix because it enables you to automate your engagements with people trying to get more information about your business.
Facebook Messenger allows for instant communication
When people find your business’ Facebook page, they can get basic information like your hours, whether you’re currently open or closed, maps and directions, as well as an overview of what you offer to the general public.
But you know and I know that for your business to close the deal, there has to be some sort of personal touch. The person seeking your business’ services and/or merchandise would want to reach out. They may want to get more information or they may have certain questions that you page simply can not anticipate.
Whatever FAQ you may have up may come a bit short as far as the wide range of questions, queries and concerns people may have. This is where Facebook Messenger comes in.
Facebook Messenger gives you “stop gap” and “catch all” communications option
Unless you have doe extensive consumer intelligence, there’s really no way you can anticipate all the needs and concerns of your customer base. That’s just not going to happen. You need a tremendous amount of resources, time and energy to be able to pull that off.
The good news is you don’t have to. Thanks to Facebook Messenger, you can be accessible to people with a wide range of questions and then message them back. Once you detect a certain pattern in the most common questions people ask, you can automate Facebook Messenger so it can answer questions based on a decision tree.
In this respect, it’s not much different from your potential customers calling a call center. Now, if you own a small business in middle America, you know that hiring a call center is not exactly within your budget.
But the good news is with Facebook, you don’t have to. If you set up your Facebook Messenger bot correctly, it can anticipate or it can filter inquiries people have and break it down into finer points so your prospective customers can get the information they desire.
If anything, they can get enough information to satisfy them until you follow up and give more detailed and specific information.
The bottom line
By using Facebook Messenger and automating it through Facebook Messenger bots, you enable your brand to distinguish itself from the competition. Let’s be honest here. More and more American businesses are moving online.
Having a website and having a robust presence on social media platforms like Facebook are no longer optional. They are absolutely necessary. In fact, they can make or break your business. This should not come as a surprise because most Americans already have mobile phones. When people have mobile devices like tablets and phones, the moment they think about buying something, they quickly check online resources.
The same goes with finding a local source of the merchandise or service that they are interested in. if your business is not part of that mix and is not visible enough online, you’re going to lose customers. Now, with this as a background, when you set up Facebook Messenger to engage with your prospects, your brand stands head and shoulders from your competitors.
Your competitors might just be unavailable or people who would otherwise be interested in what your competitors would have to offer would not do business with them because they can’t get the information they need at precisely the time they needed it.
With Facebook Messenger automation, you can get this information to people interested in your business. If anything, you can hold them with enough basic info until you can follow up with more specific information.
This can mean the difference between getting a new customer or turning one away. This can also mean the difference between retaining your current local customer base or losing them to your competition. You don’t want to get left behind. Facebook Messenger marketing is the next big thing.
It’s relatively new and that’s why it presents a golden opportunity for businesses whether purely local, regional or purely online to establish or expand their online user base.
Here’s a quick run down just in case you’re still unclear. FB messenger chatbots bring the following:
Users are 3.5 times more likely to open Messenger Update than Commercial emails
Saves time on Customer Service
Offer customer service 24/7
Walk prospects through automated SALES FUNNEL – can lead to conversion
Less customer drop off since AD opens into messenger and filters inquiries which can lead to sales page – everything is done on Messenger so you can convert your leads when they are HOTTEST
Use FB Messenger chat bot to reengage existing customers or prospects (like sending an email to someone who filled out a shopping cart)
All these factors add to increased value/qualification of prospect and increases chance of conversion tremendously
All these factors also increases chances of BRAND EQUITY building quite a bit.
A more in-depth look at FB messenger bots
Don’t let the word “bot” throw you off. I can understand why people have all sorts of misgivings regarding this word. After all, when we hear of this word, we instantly think of unpleasant things. We think about spyware being sent by zombie computers all over the world and people’s computers being hijacked by malicious software.
We also think about hackers installing bot software on sensitive computers to perpetrate crimes or denials of service attacks. Also, when we think about bots, we think about malicious and seemingly autonomous pieces of code that create all sorts of havoc.
Finally, people looking for a date online are very familiar with bots and they don’t have a very favorable view of them. In dating apps like Tinder and Grindr are often susceptible to fake dating profiles. When people try to connect with seemingly attractive users, they get lead on a wild goose chase thanks to some sort of automated script.
After they’ve wasted quite a bit of time “talking” to these accounts do they realize that they’re actually talking to a bot. The bot simply just reacts to whatever keywords they type in with some pre-canned script or dialogue.
The key is to get the other person to continue talking until they’ve “softened up” to want to click a link. That link can go to an online strip show or a paid dating service. In other words, dating bots are just simply fancy schemes in spamming people.
As you can well imagine, given all these descriptions, a lot of online consumers don’t exactly have a very favorable view of automated communication software aka “bots”. But the good news is that bots aren’t all bad. Facebook Messenger bots are proof of this.
Facebook Messenger bots take advantage of the Facebook Messenger platform automation features
Facebook made quite a stir when it announced that it has re-designed its messenger service. You can install it separately or you can install it as part of your Facebook app on your mobile device or computer.
Whatever your installation is, Facebook Messenger is designed in such a way that it can be automated. By using scripts, you can program your Facebook Messenger app to send pre-determined text to people contacting it. It’s like calling customer service number and being asked to press different buttons depending on the nature of your inquiry.
But instead of voice prompts, you do this with keyword or phrase “prompts”. For example, if you run an online shoe store and people are interested in Nike Air shoes with certain attributes, they can type in the brand name and the model or any other identifying information and then you can set up Facebook Messenger bot to give your perspective customer key information like availability, price and variations that may be in stock.
Facebook Messenger bot common features
There are many different types of Facebook Messenger bots currently in existence, but regardless of their seeming differences, they do have common features.
• Purely inbound
Messenger bots will only send you a message if you message them first. If somebody goes to your Facebook page and clicks on the messenger icon because they’re interested in your online catalogue or your service description, they can click the messenger button and leave a message.
In other words, they initiate the relationship. You don’t use your bot to message people who have no prior relationship with you. It’s all inbound, not outbound.
• Trigger specific
Since Facebook Messenger bots are inbound, they filter inquiries based on certain key phrases. In many cases, Facebook page operators would give a short menu of trigger words to potential customers engaging with their Facebook Messenger bot.
For example, to use the online shoe store scenario, I can put on my Facebook page “contact us today. Type “availability” or type “shoe type/brand” to get more information.” Basically, I’m giving a “cheat sheet” to prospective buyers on how to use my Facebook Messenger bot.
When they type in that information, they’d get information back. If they type the wrong information and it doesn’t prompt the right feedback, I can put a generic “catch all message” that notifies them that I read all engagements and once regular business hours resume, I will get in touch with them through Facebook Messenger.
• Facebook Messenger is rule driven
Another great thing about Facebook Messenger bots is that you can automate them based on rules. So, depending on how the customer responds to the information you send them, which in of itself is a response to their initial inquiry, you can create a decision tree that sends different messages depending on the prompt.
This is not much different from calling a call center in India or the Philippines. When you call a call center, you are routed by an initial screening system and depending on your question or inquiry, you are sent to other specialists.
This is especially true if you are looking to resolve credit card issues, billing statements or financial transactions. There is some sort of decision tree involved and you can use a similar approach with your Facebook Messenger bot.
Facebook Messenger bot limitations
As awesome as the common features of most Facebook Messenger bots may be, bots do have quite a number of limitations. If you’re excited about using this Facebook messaging technology to expand your business, you might end up overextending yourself or you might assume an overly optimistic assumptions about current bot technology.
It’s a good idea to be as realistic as possible because as amazing as chat bots are, they do have serious limitations.
They cannot read minds
Please understand that chat bot technology is still a work in progress. We haven’t reached a point yet where you can post an ambiguous word and automatically expect the bot to know what you’re talking about.
You basically have to train your customers to use certain keywords and phrases to either start the conversation properly so as to trigger the right information, or step them through the decision tree process so they are feeding the bot the right bits and pieces of information so as to trigger the right response.
This can be quite clunky and awkward depending on how long the decision tree is and how many alternative pieces of information are possible with each branch of the logic tree.
They can require fancy coding
If you want a really professional Facebook Messenger bot, you need somebody who can code it using Facebook’s commands in a robust way. While you don’t necessarily have to have coding skills to come up with a fairly straightforward bot, if you want it to be deep, nuanced, robust and scalable, you would need professional help.
This might set you back quite a bit of money because people who know their way around the Facebook Messenger bot automation aren’t exactly cheap.
Facebook Messenger bots have to comply with Facebook’s terms of service
This is why Facebook is clear. You can use Facebook Messenger purely as an inbound system. You can not turn it into some sort of spam machine that basically messages people who haven’t even been to your page.
There has to be some sort of pre-existing engagement or point of contact between your business’ presence on Facebook and your prospect. Maybe they visited your page. Maybe they are part of a group that you control. Maybe they left a comment on your page. There has to be some sort of initial trigger that was purely initiated by your customer.
You can not initiate it yourself because Facebook will view that as spam. Another related limitation Facebook imposes as part of its terms of service involves timing. When a person interacts with your brand on Facebook, you have 24 hours to send that person the initial message and then a follow up message. That’s all you’re allowed.
Anything you do past this point would be a violation. The only way to get around this, of course, is if your prospect contacts you again through messenger and then you have another opportunity to send an automated message and then follow up.
Keep this rule in mind. They have to make the first move and then you get the right to reply. And then after 24 hours, you get to send another reply, but that’s it. At this point, they have to keep contacting you for you to keep sending them messages.
This might seem pretty straightforward, but if you’re looking for a more robust or aggressive way of engaging with your customers, this term of service limitation is quite a hefty one.
How can Facebook Messenger Bots Grow Your Audience?
Please Understand that the Facebook Messenger Chat Bot is Not a Spam Bot
I can’t emphasize this enough. It’s very easy to think that just because Facebook has opened its Messenger platform to automation, marketers can go wild with it.
No. If you go nuts, Facebook will not only block you, but cancel your account. And, to add insult to injury, ban you.
That’s spamming on Facebook. Whether you’re using page spammers, group spammers, comment spammers or messenger chat bot spammers, it is not a winning strategy.
If you want to truly make money on Facebook, you have to do it the legit way. This means building a brand, and conducting yourself with the highest level of professionalism and integrity. In other words, use Facebook like a legitimate business would use it.
I just want to get that out of the way because it’s very easy for a lot of marketers to think that Facebook Messenger automation is some sort of backdoor or shortcut to getting a tremendous amount of traffic from Facebook.
While you can get quite a bit of traffic from Facebook, using bots responsibly enable you to build a sustainable business.
This is not some sort of one-time big-time bot technology. Get that idea out of your head. In many cases, less is more.
Sure, using the techniques that I’m going to share with you below, you may get a lower volume of traffic compared to a spamming strategy. But if you are looking to build a sustainable business, this is the way to go.
What’s the point of getting millions of visitors only to see a tiny fraction of them convert?
Worst of all, you only get one chance to drive that traffic. After Google has banned those accounts, you then buy new accounts and start over again. And on and on it goes.
That is not a sustainable business. That is not how you build the kind of online brand that would withstand the test of time.
I have something better in store for you. Keep reading.
Bot-Based Traffic Recruitment, Comment, and Profile-Based Messenger Marketing
The best way to use Facebook Messenger bots to grow your audience is to start with the existing presence you already have on Facebook. This means people must come to you.
Facebook Messenger bot is not going to be the tool that is going to drive visitors from the rest of Facebook to your particular page. It doesn’t work that way. Well, at least the responsible use of Facebook Messenger bot doesn’t work that way.
Instead, Facebook Messenger chat bots are intended to automate the engagement your Facebook marketing has already driven to your Facebook Page. In other words, it is an inbound tool. It is not an outbound spam software that you use to pull traffic from other places on Facebook.
A lot of people might think that since it is inbound, it necessarily cripples or greatly diminishes the power of Facebook Messenger bots. Actually, it doesn’t. It actually increases the likelihood that your visitor would have a favorable view of your brand.
The most common way you can use Facebook Messenger bots is when somebody posts a comment on your Facebook Page. You have many posts on your page and somebody visiting your page leaves a comment.
Normally, this comment just stays there until you have the time and opportunity to view the comment and respond. Usually, business owners would respond with another comment.
With Facebook Messenger bot automation, the moment somebody leaves a comment on your post on your page, Facebook Messenger opens up and sends them a reply. Facebook then allows you, within the span of 24 hours, to send another message.
You get to send out an initial response, and then you follow up. After this point, if the prospect likes your response, they can then send another inquiry and the process repeats itself over again.
This back and forth between your prospect can lead to many great things. It can be an opportunity for you to share even more content links with your prospect. It can also lead to that person getting the kind of answers that they need.
A lot of times, they have very basic questions like “What are your hours?”
“Do you have certain things in stock?” “Do you have a tracking code?”
“What is the status of my order?” – that kind of thing. This saves you a tremendous amount of time and money as far as customer support goes.
This page-based automation can also lead to actual sales. When somebody leaves a comment on your product listings on your page, you can respond with the available options for a product. They can then select a product and close the deal right in Messenger.
This is a very powerful opportunity because over 50% (closing in on 80%) of all users use mobile devices like mobile phones and tablets to interact with the internet. Your business really can’t afford to assume that your customers are going to be in front of a laptop or a desktop computer.
By starting, processing and closing the sale using Facebook Messenger, everything takes place in a mobile environment. This can explode your sales volume.
Use Facebook Messenger Bots to Qualify Your Prospects from Your Facebook Page
I wish I could tell you that the vast majority of people that find themselves on your Facebook Page are actual buyers.
If you have been doing any kind of online marketing and you know your way around Facebook, you know that this isn’t true. You know that this is a fantasy.
For the most part, the vast majority of people on your page are somewhat confused. They’re not quite clear as to what they’re looking for or what they need. They have a lot of questions.
This is a tremendous opportunity. There is some filtration process going.
Maybe for a hundred people, ten will end up buying. Still, those are ten sales you could not have had if you did not have this sales filtration process in place.
Use your Facebook Messenger bot to qualify your prospect by answering their questions, creating some sort of decision tree for your responses, and, if they are the right type of person with the right need at the right time, you can close the deal off Facebook Messenger itself.
In other words, you give them the answer they’re looking for precisely at the time they are most interested in buying the service or merchandise you are promoting.
Use It as an “Info Delivery” Platform for Your Comment’s Call to Action
When you leave a comment on blogs that use Facebook’s comment plug-in, you can generate sales.
I know that sounds outlandish to a lot of people. I mean, after all, you’re just commenting. You’re just sharing your thoughts.
Well, you can comment as your page. And if people think that what you have to share is credible and adds value to the conversation, you end up positively branding your business.
They can see that you are credible. They can see that you know what you’re talking about regarding your niche. They then are more likely to click on your profile and end up on our Facebook Page.
Once they are on your Facebook page, they can then chat with you through the chat widget or icon.
To turbocharge this process, you should share high quality content on all your comments to posts that are closely related to your niche which use the Facebook comment plug-in.
A critical piece of your comments is the call to action. You’re basically saying to the person who found your answer credible to check out your Facebook Page.
Or, if you’re feeling quite aggressive, tell them, “Click on my page profile for more information. And if you want to get a hold of me, click on the chat button.”
This might seem like a stretch but it actually works if you post high quality content. If your content positions you as some sort of expert or a credible authority in your field of expertise, people will take you up on your offer.
Please understand that real experts are few and far between. Often times, the people who post comments to blog posts post irrelevant comments that are simply off-base.
When it’s readily apparent that you know what you’re talking about, people would at least be interested in your Facebook page. And from there, they can engage with you on an automated basis by simply clicking that Messenger icon on your page.
When people take you up on your call to action, what can you do? Well, as I have mentioned above, you can send them more content. You can also qualify them to possibly get a sale from them.
There are many ways you can do it. What’s important is that they reach out to you first.
This is inbound. This is not you spamming and pulling people into a chat. They have to make the first move, and then you send them an automated response.
From there, they can then make certain decisions which triggers specific pre-written responses from your bot and this can lead to sales or can lead to the prospect viewing more content which would later qualify them for conversion.
Where can You Post Your Comments with Your Call to Action?
You can do this on blog posts that use the Facebook Comments plug-in as I’ve mentioned above. You can also use this on Facebook Pages. You can post as your page account on other businesses’ Facebook Pages.
You can also do this on your own Facebook Groups. You can post content that has a link to your chat bot on your Facebook Group’s content posts.
The Dos and Don’ts of Marketing Through a Facebook Messenger Chat Bot
Please observe the following etiquette rules when using Facebook
Messenger chat bot to engage with your target audience members.
As I have mentioned earlier, you have to always comply with Facebook’s terms of service. If you play the game fast and loose, don’t be surprised when Facebook blocks you or flat out bans you.
That’s bad news. And sadly, it happens all the time.
If you are serious about generating a legitimate business from Facebook, you have to play by the rules.
All these etiquette rules flow from Facebook’s terms of service.
Messenger Bot Etiquette: Be Professional at All Times
You cannot assume that your visitors are mind readers. You have to basically assume that they have very little knowledge of your business so your messaging has to gently guide them through the wide range of information options your bot makes available to them.
You can’t just assume that they know what your business is about and your full range of services and merchandise and you’re just waiting for prompts that go directly to a specific page.
The problem with that approach is that very few of your actual Messenger bot users would actually get the message that would benefit them the most. Instead, your Messenger bot would be sending out one generic message after another.
This is sad. Seriously. You’re wasting a tremendous amount of opportunity precisely because you assumed that people finding themselves in your Messenger bot dialog system know what they’re looking for.
Most consumers don’t know what they’re looking for. Even if they find themselves on your website and even if they are interested generally in what you have to offer, you have to hold them by the hand.
This is not a headache nor is it a hassle. In fact, you should look at it for what it is. It’s a golden opportunity.
When somebody’s kind of fuzzy regarding what they need, they are very suggestible. This means you can position the conversation in such a way that they may buy something that they normally wouldn’t buy or they would buy more of something that they already are intent on buying.
Do you see how this works? It’s an opportunity.
Don’t think of it as just a customer support hassle and you’re just basically going to give them the bare minimum. Instead, create a fairly open-ended logic tree for your chat bot so there are many ways your customers can trigger pre-written messages.
How to Avoid Spamming
It’s extremely important to make sure that you stick to Facebook’s terms of service. Their main rule is that once your customer initiates contact with your Facebook Messenger chat bot, you can send them an automatic reply. And after 24 hours, you can send a follow up.
You have to keep this in mind at all times. You cannot violate this. You cannot try to cheat this.
It’s very important to make sure that whatever message you send, it is strictly related to your business. This is very important. It can’t be unrelated spam. It can’t be seemingly purely personal because you only have one shot, really, to make a great first impression.
If you send off-topic messages, it would seem that you’re wasting your prospect’s time. Keep it short and laser-targeted to the business at hand.
Also, whatever message you send out must add value to the life of the person inquiring. This is crucial.
They have problems. They have needs. You know this. That’s why they’re speaking to your bot in the first place.
Accordingly, get straight to the point. What is the best solution that you can bring to the table? Clearly describe it so they themselves can quickly and easily see the value.
It can be a link to your main website, or it can be a basic answer like “these are the holidays that we’re closed on” or “this is our procedure for getting some sort of special deal.” Whatever the case may be, make sure that whatever you say to your prospects adds value to their lives.
Always Let the Customer Lead
Americans are very independent. The same applies with Western Europeans. So, it’s really important to make sure that they lead the conversation.
While we all know that the main reason why they’re at your Facebook Page in the first place is because you called them to action, you can’t rub their faces in it.
Make it seem like they are always leading the conversation. Never take the lead. Always follow up. In other words, make the deal or the engagement look like their idea.
How to Qualify Traffic
Here are the dos and don’ts of qualifying traffic so that people who are engaging with your Facebook Messenger chat bot are the right people.
Let me clue you in on a powerful marketing secret on Facebook: volume is worthless.
I know that sounds crazy to a lot of people because a lot of marketers view big traffic numbers with filtration in mind. They’re thinking that as long as they can convert one in a hundred, this means that they can pump millions of people through a sales funnel and their income will explode.
You can’t have that volume mindset with Facebook Messenger chat bot because you run the risk of seriously and irreparably damaging your reputation. Don’t do it. Resist that temptation.
Here’s what you need to do:
Target Only Niche-Specific Pages
The name of the game in marketing brands on Facebook is to find niche-related pages.
Since the people that go to those pages are already interested in the same niche you’re in, the more active you are on those pages’ comments sections, the more visible your brand becomes.
As long as you’re not spamming those pages, your comments make for great branding opportunities. Your comments, which are linked to your Facebook Page profile, can actually pull traffic from those pages.
This is a great way of qualifying traffic because you’re only advertising on pages that are specifically related to your niche. This means only people who are actually interested in your niche would see your link to your Facebook Page and end up on your page.
Target Only Niche-Specific Groups
Another way to pull traffic from Facebook is to hang out at groups that discuss issues and brands related to your niche.
Now, group marketing is a little bit tricky because you can’t advertise your Facebook Page. When you post on a group, it has to be your personal account. Accordingly, you have to walk on eggshells and be very diplomatic.
The best way to pull traffic from niche-specific groups is to actually share your Facebook Page posts.
This is why niche-specificity is crucial.
If people in the group get the impression that you’re simply just trying to spam and your page really has nothing to do with the needs of the people in the group, you will get blocked. And before you know it, your page might even get banned and deleted.
Still, when you target only niche-specific groups, you’re basically engaging with people who have self-segregated themselves based on their interests.
Use Your Page to Call Visitors to Action
Once somebody finds their way to your Facebook Page, you have a tremendous opportunity. Don’t blow it.
Maybe they found you through an ad, maybe they found you through a post you shared in a group, or maybe they found you through a comment on another page. Regardless of how they find you, call them to action.
Now, here’s the secret. You have to call them to action based on their needs. You can’t just say, “Click on this button to get a hold of me.” Well, any random bum can get a hold of you and that may not be the right customer for you.
You have to use emotional triggers targeted to the needs of your prospect. For example, if I sell agricultural support services on my Facebook Page, a good call to action may be a pinned post saying, “We offer a wide range of solutions for small organic farmers. If you are looking for higher yields or you’re looking for local community sales resources, click here to chat with us. We have the right resources for you.”
See what I did there? I specifically addressed their needs.
These are people who are looking for places to sell. These are people looking for tips to improve their organic farm’s output.
I’m not being broad, I’m not being vague, and I’m not assuming that they know how to read my mind.
I’m not doing any of that. Instead, I was very specific as to what they have problems with.
This requires a high level of knowledge regarding your typical customer’s profile. What are their problems? What are they struggling with? What frustrates them about their business?
And your call to action must speak to those so as to pump as much qualified traffic to your Facebook Messenger chat bot.
Do Pump as Much Traffic to Pages that have Your Chat Bot Link
If you have webpages up, pump as much relevant traffic to those pages.
Usually, your content will filter people, and then at the end, get people to click on your Facebook Messenger link. The chat bot will take care of the rest.
In a later chapter, I will tell you the many different forms this takes. But what’s important is that you use your website to draw eyeballs to your chat bot link.
Do Boost Your Brand’s Visibility and Make it Easy for Prospects to See Your Chat Bot Link
The more you engage with people on social media and on many different messaging platforms, the more people can see your competence, credibility and authority. In other words, they get an opportunity to see your brand in action.
Remember, when you are actually sharing useful information with people, your brand improves. You stand out from the crowd. You’re not just another person blasting out generic information that everybody already knows.
Instead, you’re getting straight to the heart of their concerns and resolving problems at the individual level.
This means you have to always have a way of pulling people to some kind of page that has your chat bot link. This is very important. Because if you don’t have some sort of payload or call to action in your overall messaging strategy online, you’re not that visible.
People might think you are a genius, they might agree that you’re an expert, but there’s really no way your brand could benefit from it because you’re not pulling them to your Facebook Page. You’re not telling them to check out your website. You’re not doing any of that. You’re not even drawing attention to your profile.
Whatever you do, draw attention to yourself in such a way that somehow, some way, an interested person will end up on a page with your chat bot link. That’s the payload. That’s the whole purpose of you getting out there, looking at all these conversations, and sharing your two cents.
The Classic Sales Funnel
Before I talk about Facebook Messenger chat bots in further detail, I want to recap how the classic online sales funnel works.
You have to remember how to sell stuff online so you can craft your overall Facebook Messenger chat bot strategy according to these basic rules.
If you blow this, then even the most sophisticated Facebook Messenger chat bot is not going to help you. All you end up doing is waste money.
To Sell Anything, Online or Offline, You Have to Get People to Trust You
When was the last time you bought something from a complete and total stranger? I would venture to guess that the answer is “never.”
If that’s your answer, you’re a completely normal person because that’s how most normal people think. You’re not going to buy thousands of dollars, or even dozens of dollars’ worth of merchandise from somebody you don’t know.
There has to be some sort of trust there. Maybe a friend referred you, or maybe you have read something online that got your confidence. Whatever the case may be, there has to be some sort of trust. Otherwise, you’re not going to pull the trigger.
If that’s how you think, then you have a pretty good understanding of how pretty much everybody else thinks. This is why the sales funnel is broken down into three stages. It all leads to trust.
Have you ever noticed that when you check out Facebook or go to a lot of other websites that certain ads keep showing up? You may be thinking to yourself, “Why is the company behind that ad blowing all that money to keep showing the same ad over and over?”
Well, this is called the rule of eight. Marketing studies show that consumers would only click on an ad or take action on an offer once they have seen it at least eight times.
They have to be exposed to it for them to feel that they know it enough. This can take the form of an ad, a graphic, an article, or even a mention in an article.
By that point, they reach a stage where they feel that, “Okay, maybe this brand is worth knowing.” So, they start looking at the ad more closely. They start reading the article with more attention.
After this stage, they then subconsciously decide whether they like the brand or the offer enough or they like the solution being offered.
The Like Stage
In the Like Stage, you basically are thinking that the particular category of solutions offered by an ad is legit. But you are going to compare it with other solutions.
For example, if you’re in the market for a new car, your need is very basic. You’re trying to get from Point A to Point B.
But there are many different car manufacturers competing for your business. You make a decision by lining them all up and figuring out their advantages and disadvantages.
At this stage, you start liking a specific solution after you’ve compared it with others. And usually, this is due to the fact that you’ve seen their ads several times.
That’s how they distinguish themselves from the competition. They don’t run away from the competition.
Great ads usually let you know that there’s competition out there, but they offer something different.
You like their specific take.
Once you have decided that a certain approach or a certain range of solutions is the way to go compared to others, the next step is to trust the brand that got you there.
And usually, this happens quite naturally. It just clicks.
This is actually the easiest part because it’s almost automatic. Once your messaging clears the Know and Like stage, the Trust stage pretty much falls into place.
Your Facebook Messenger chat bot messages must comply with all three stages. Otherwise, you’re going to lose the sale.
When the engagement with the prospect is at the Know stage, you have to restrict your Messenger chat bot to set certain pieces of information that boost credibility as far as knowledgeability, competence and authority go.
On the Like stage, the kind of messaging you send must be comparative in nature. In other words, you position your brand according to its strengths, and then you line that up with the weakest points of the competition.
You kind of stack the comparison by showing them in the worst light and showing your strongest suit.
And then finally, you get to the Trust stage, and this is usually filled in or assumed by the prospect.
The Bottom Line
You’re not going to buy anything from people you don’t trust. Thankfully, Facebook Messenger bot can help qualify general online traffic from Facebook into deeper and deeper levels of trust.
Set up properly, your Facebook Messenger chat bot can turn an otherwise vaguely or mildly interested prospect base into one that is eager, ready and willing to convert.
How to Create Your Own Facebook Messenger Bot
Facebook has opened its Messenger architecture to developers. They basically laid out the different commands and different structures that Messenger bot developers could use to interact with Facebook’s core messaging technology. Usually, this is done through an API system.
If any of this sounds arcane to you, don’t feel too bad. It sounds like Greek to most people. This is geek talk. This is highly technical stuff.
At this stage, you really have three options when it comes to creating your own Facebook Messenger bot.
Option #1: Hire someone to do if for you
When you hire somebody to build you a Facebook Messenger chat bot, you’re hiring somebody who is very familiar with Facebook’s developer notes, developer specifications and protocols for its Facebook Messenger application.
This is a person who has spent time figuring things out or who has probably come up with several chat bots in the past. The person definitely has the experience to do it quickly and efficiently.
This is a great option to take if you have fancy features for your Facebook
Messenger chat bot.
For example, if you are looking to automate Messenger interaction after somebody clicks on an ad, you probably would need JSON integration.
In other words, when you click on an ad and Messenger opens up, JSON would pull up some of your user data and then use it to populate key parts of the chat interaction. It’s as if Facebook Messenger chat bot got into your prospect’s head. Really amazing stuff.
After seeing some JSON implementations, the only thing I can think about was “How did they do that?” It’s as if Facebook chat is reading the prospect’s mind.
As quick, powerful and creative as custom Facebook Messenger chat bot development may be, it is also very expensive. Usually, the fancier the chat bot and the more robust its features, the more dollars you should expect to pay.
Well, if you’re on a tight budget or you run a small business with a modest budget, don’t give up. You still have two other options.
Option #2: Try to do it yourself using Facebook’s default response system
You don’t have to be a programming genius to make Facebook Messenger’s chat bot system work for you. Facebook does allow an automated response system for its Facebook pages.
You have to turn on the feature and then you have to get permission from Facebook. This is not automatic.
The good news, though, is that this is already built-in and you would just plug in the scripts yourself.
This cuts down on cost.
This also gives you a tremendous opportunity to learn the ins and outs of Facebook’s default response messenger system. You’re basically turning it into your own response bot.
The downside should be obvious. This option doesn’t really unlock the full range of capabilities that Facebook Messenger automation brings to the table. It just gives you the very basic.
In fact, it can be quite clunky, especially if you don’t really know what you’re doing and you just put basic questions and answers. A lot of the questions may not be on point.
Another disadvantage is that it can take quite a while. Everybody has different learning curves and if you’re trying to come up with something that looks professional, it can take quite a while.
Finally, if you drop the ball or the interactions are not as professional as your prospects would expect, your brand may suffer. This is always a possibility.
And it may well turn out that the problems it may cause may outweigh whatever benefits and savings you get.
Option #3: Use the ManyChat platform
I’m using the ManyChat Facebook Messenger bot automation system as my main example. There are other companies out there offering their own platforms that simplify the Facebook Messenger chat bot creation system.
The reason why I’m focusing on ManyChat is that it is the most well-known and the most experienced. They’ve been around the block for quite a while. They have come up with a very robust and scalable solution.
The great thing about this platform is that it is very easy to use. You don’t have to be some sort of coding or programming genius. You don’t have to know Facebook like the back of your hand. It has a scalable learning curve.
Also, its chat bot creation system is very intuitive. It’s almost linear, it’s easy to figure out, and it’s easy to string a series of responses based on certain conditions together. I can’t say the same with other platforms out there because most of the other platforms out there are built for programmers or coders.
Finally, the ManyChat platform has been used by many small businesses and small to medium-scale online publishers. This means that their platform is tried and proven in terms of its ability to produce bots that deliver the results their client base needs.
Also, another great thing about this platform is that it was designed from the ground up to help anybody, regardless of their technical skills, and regardless of their primary language.
Building Facebook Messenger chat bots using ManyChat is quick and easy. It even has templates you could use.
The secret sauce to ManyChat is the fact that it has fine-tuned some features that it knows users deploy to recruit new customers. It gives you a wide range of tools so you can attract visitors to your Facebook Messenger, and it gives you tools to possibly convert that person into a buyer.
How to Drive More People to Your Facebook Messenger Chat Bot
At this point, I’m assuming that you’re using a platform or you’ve created your own chat bot or you’ve hired somebody to make one for you. The question then becomes, “Now that you have this tool, how do you maximize its value?”
The name of the game here is to drive the maximum amount of qualified people to your Facebook Messenger chat bot.
Here are just some of the most common ways brands do it, both on Facebook and outside of Facebook.
Add Your Chat Bot Link to Your Facebook Page
The most obvious way you can promote your Facebook Messenger chat bot is to simply link to it on your page. No big mystery. You should be doing this by default.
When prospects click on the chat icon, your bot sends a pre-written message. This opens the discussion, and then you can follow up after 24 hours. The prospect can then send other messages, and then this triggers yet another response from you.
You have to use decision trees to filter the input from your customers. It’s kind of like making a phone call for customer service. You probably have done this.
When you dial the main number, they would tell you, “For billing, push 1. For technical support, push 2.” And then once you push that number, there’s another menu, and then another menu after that.
You can do the same with your Facebook Messenger chat bot so the customer gets the specific information they need.
Tie Your Chat Bot Link to Your Facebook Ads
Turbocharge your results by getting people who click on your Facebook ads to open up their Facebook Messenger.
This is really powerful stuff because if you hire a programmer to use JSON integration, the chat bot interaction is not going to sound automatic and impersonal.
Instead, JSON would pull data from the account of the prospect so the prospect would feel more at ease with your brand and get the impression that your brand “totally understands them.”
This opens up their mind and increases the likelihood of becoming a subscriber to your mailing list or actually converting on your offers and becoming a buyer.
Embed Chat Bot Widgets into Your Web Page
This is one of the most powerful ways to drive traffic to your Facebook Messenger. Depending on your budget and how much time you have, Facebook Page and group marketing, and to a lesser extent, Facebook comment marketing, can only take you so far. There is, after all, a much bigger internet out there outside of Facebook.
When you embed your chat bot widget into your webpage, you have a wider range of options to “push” people to engage with you through Facebook Messenger. You can create an overlay.
This is controversial because it can get quite annoying quickly. Have you ever gone to a webpage where you can’t simply do anything unless you click an “I Accept” button, or, worse yet, you enter your email address into a form? Those can get quite counterproductive.
People might think that your brand is some sort of scam brand because you’re basically twisting people’s arms to engage with you. After all, they went to your webpage because they want to read your content. They’re not exactly there to sign up for your mailing list or chat with you.
Less intrusive options include putting up a chat box or a button that triggers the Facebook Messenger app.
Messenger Referral URL
In addition to the widget and code that you can use on your webpage, Facebook Messenger also gives you a universal messenger referral URL. You can put this on your website, and you can put this on other people’s website.
For example, if you have an account at Quora, the question and answer platform, people might want to reach out to you directly. So, you could say in your answers on Quora, “If you have any other questions or concerns, click on my profile and get a hold of me via Facebook Messenger.
This is actually one of the most powerful ways to market on Quora. You’re doing it in a non-intrusive way.
It’s not like you’re slapping people on the face and spamming them with your website URL. If you keep doing that, you probably will get banned.
On the other hand, when you say to people, “I hope my answer addressed your questions. If you have any other concerns or other questions, please feel free to click on my profile and get a hold of me via Facebook Messenger,” that is less intrusive.
It also builds on the value of the content you shared. In other words, if and only if, people feel that what you shared is valuable, would they go through the time and bother of reaching out to you through Facebook Messenger? Do you see how powerful that is?
Because chances are, the people that will try to get a hold of you from Twitter, Pinterest, Quora, Reddit, or wherever else, are actually interested in what you’re talking about. These are people who obviously think you’re credible and authoritative enough to be worth reaching out to.
Facebook Comments on Your Page
This is the most common way many chat users use Facebook Messenger chat bots. When users reply to your post, they get added to your messenger subscriber list. They also get sent an automated message. If they respond, they get another automated message, and on and on it goes.
There are certain limitations to this. It’s obvious that people can abuse this for spamming purposes. There are limits that Facebook puts on how rapid your bot can respond, depending on what the prospect does.
Take full advantage of the features above so you can maximize the results you get with your Facebook Messenger chat bot.
Messaging automation on Facebook produces a tremendous amount of opportunities, but you also have to be very responsible. You can’t just use ManyChat and tweak in such a way as to spam. Bad move.
Remember, if in doubt, look to build a brand. That’s how you build up a business that can withstand the test of time.
The 10 main reason why you should use Facebook Messenger bot marketing
If you’re still not convinced why you should buy a Facebook Messenger bot or subscribe to a platform to take advantage of this technology, here are 10 quick reasons why you should do so.
Reason #1: You can qualify your traffic
When people ask questions, you can use these questions to filter people based on their probability of buying something. You can also conduct your messaging affairs on Facebook in a more targeted way because you know at the end of the day, you’re trying to drive them to your Facebook Messenger chat bot.
Reason #2: You can subscribe from a wide range of Facebook sub features
By simply calling people to action to check your profile, you can instantly subscribe people from many different places on Facebook. You can also subscribe people from many places outside of Facebook. How?
Well, you can link directly to your business’ Facebook Messenger URL and when they get to your Facebook Messenger, your chat bot kicks in and automates the engagement.
Reason #3: You can pair Facebook Messenger marketing with the classic online sales funnel.
Since you know that your prospects will be reaching out to you, you can then set up different conditions for you Facebook chat bot. If the prospect says certain words, the bot sends out a specific message. You can then chart all of this and optimize it until it leads to more conversions or a much happier customer.
Reason #4: Facebook Messenger chat bots are automated and cheap
The great thing about using a chat bot is you don’t have to hire somebody in America, India or The Philippines. The software does all this automatically. Basically, it acts as an intake disk. And then, based on the responses of the prospect, they would then get more specific messages.
This drops your customer support and sales support costs dramatically. Also, unlike human beings who get sick, tired or want to form a union, software runs 24/7 without complaint. The bottom line is you can set up an automated conversion system and make money while you sleep.
Reason #5: Less spammy than other methods. This is my favorite reason to be honest. Facebook Messenger is inbound. The engagement doesn’t happen when you send out a bot and it grabs somebody and you talk to them. No! You basically wait until somebody tells you and then you send them a message plus one after 24 hours.
This means that the customer takes the lead. They don’t that they are feel that they are put upon. They don’t feel that you are invading their space. You then craft the interaction so that it’s built around their needs and you have yourself a golden sales opportunity.
Reason #6: Facebook Messenger has an 80% open rate
Imagine that, an 80% open rate. Compare that with a much lower open rate for email and a much lower click rate for search engine traffic. There’s no comparison. Interestingly enough, given how immediate messenger traffic is, it can lead to much better results compared to email.
Email is already eating search engine traffic for lunch year after year. If you set up your Facebook Messenger chat bot into actions correctly, your conversion rate might even blow email conversions out of the water.
Reason #7: Facebook Messenger enables you to create automated conversations you can fine tune
The great thing about the conversations you get with your customers on Facebook Messenger is you build up a database. You can look for certain words that keeps coming up again and again and you can fine tune the answers that you give out immediately.
At first, your chat bot is probably going to be a little bit clunky because it can’t anticipate all questions. But once you see the patterns and you connect the dots, you come up with better scripts and this leads to happier customers. Eventually, you can automate all of this using big data analysis.
Reason #8: Responsiveness helps you build a solid online brand Make no mistake. If you’re trying to make money on the internet, you’re in for a tough fight. You have other competitors out there and they’re doing all sorts of things and saying all sorts of things to build a solid brand.
But at the end of the day, if they take forever to answer inquiries and you are able to give prospects the answers they need, your brand comes out on top. This initial interaction may not lead to a sale, but since you establish yourself as something more credible and more helpful, you can bet that this positions you for future potential sales.
You end up getting a competitive advantage and you may leave your competitors behind.
Reason #9: You can share content that can go viral on Facebook Messenger
Please understand that you can use Facebook Messenger chat bots not just to send answers to certain questions your prospects have. They can reach out to your messenger and you can send them an article or a blog post you produced. This can serve as resources.
They might like it so much that they might share it on their Facebook wall. This is actually a form of guerrilla marketing or a back door avenue for free Facebook traffic. The more they share, the more likely your content would go viral.
Reason #10: Your competitors haven’t fully gotten on the Facebook Messenger bandwagon
Facebook Messenger chat bots are relatively new. It’s only been in the past 2 years that Facebook opened up their platform. Currently, this is virgin territory. It’s not saturated yet. But guess what? Competitions beginning to pile up.
As of now, there’s already 300,000 chat bots. Expect that number to reach into the millions sooner rather than later. Given the tremendous amount of people on Facebook, this is a tremendous opportunity. Take this opportunity.
I’ve given you the inside scoop on the amazing opportunities Facebook chat bot marketing presents. Now is not the time to give in to analysis paralysis. I’m sure this has happened to you because it happens to a lot of people.
Analysis paralysis is when you basically refuse to make a decision because you feel that you need to get all the information you need regarding a particular choice. What you’re doing is you’re simply just buying time. You’re just basically covering for your reluctance.
Sadly, there is no one piece of information that would finally and fully resolve all issues of risk. Anything worth doing in this life carries a risk. There’s no such thing as a guaranteed slam dunk. You can minimize your risk and manage it through insurance as well as with adequate research and diligence. But research can only go so far.
At some point, you have to give yourself permission to decide with finality. Either you’re going to do it or you’re not going to do it. That’s the bottom line. To paraphrase Yoda from Star Wars, “You either do or you don’t. There’s no such thing as try.”
And, unfortunately, when you’re in “analysis paralysis mode”, you’re just trying to get all the information. You’re trying to contain all the risks. You’re trying to figure everything out with maximum certainty. That’s not going to happen.
You have to decide whether you’re going to do this. And of you do decide to do it, go all the way. I’m not talking about spending thousands of dollars on custom chat bots. But go all the way in terms of knowing what you need to know, optimizing your results and eventually getting the results that you’re looking for.
I wish you nothing but the greatest success with Facebook Messenger chat bot marketing.
Thanks for reading….
Jason W Steward