6 Impactful Ways to Use an Instagram Chatbot
Instagram has over a billion users worldwide (source).
Not only that but Instagram was originally predicted to reach a billion users in 2024. Instead, Instagram hit this target three years early.
Of the billion users, Instagram boasts an impressive 25 million business accounts and at least 200 million users visit a business page daily (source).
The channel’s rapid growth has changed how many consumers interact with brands.
It’s become expected that a business will be on Instagram, providing customer service and sharing content.
This expectation brings its fair share of challenges and exciting opportunities.
To build a dominant Instagram presence, a brand has to allocate resources. To get the best return on these resources, a brand has to take advantage of the channel's fast-paced and interactive nature.
In this article, we’ll explore how an Instagram chatbot can help brands be more resource-efficient while maximising the value their account brings.
Providing customer service your competitors will envy
Instagram has emerged as a dominant customer service channel.
Managing this channel can be extremely resource-intensive, often requiring a range of dedicated agents.
Chatbots alleviate the pressure customer service departments face, acting as a first line of defence.
Also, 71% of all Instagram users are under the age of 35 (source). This demographic is accustomed to interacting with chatbots, making conversational AI the perfect customer service tool for Instagram.
Responding to repetitive enquiries
Dealing with FAQs and repetitive enquiries is a chatbot's bread and butter. An Instagram chatbot can be trained on niche subject matters, enabling it to answer a range of complex FAQs.
All a brand needs to do is create their FAQs and then train the chatbot. This is where you tell the chatbot which type of questions respond to which answer, using AI and machine learning the chatbot will then start to understand many question variants and spelling mistakes.
For some, this may sound a little daunting. In reality, it’s as easy as creating a spreadsheet with a list of questions and answers in.
Guiding customers through processes
Every brand has repetitive processes they need to guide customers through. Be it resetting a password, checking order status, or even something as niche as explaining how to complete their dog rescue form.
While these processes are vital for any customer service department to function, they’re not what human agents should be spending their time on.
Agents are at their best when helping customers with complex, or emotional, issues. Machines are at their best when completing repetitive processes.
So, why not play to each other's strengths?
An Instagram chatbot can help take care of the long winded, repetitive processes while human agents focus on those that really need the help.
This means those that just need a few pointers get it instantly, and those with serious enquiries get help sooner.
Using a chatbot’s conversation builder, it’s possible to replicate your current processes exactly. It’s easy to turn every step you currently follow into a chatbot conversation.
Many customer service departments have guides or helpsheets to train new agents on their common processes. Imagine if those helpsheets talked to customers, assisting them directly.
That’s an Instagram chatbot.
Building a memorable and exciting brand
For the innovative, chatbots are more than a simple sales or service tool.
They’re a tool that helps position a brand as quirky, convey a brand’s core beliefs, or build trust through the sharing of advice and information.
This is the point in the article where we have to use ‘that phrase’, but try thinking outside of the box for a few minutes. Imagine you work with a fitness brand trying to position themselves as the lighthearted option, the brand that’s working to keep the world fit but understands going to the gym isn’t always the nicest experience.
How could you use a chatbot to solidify their place in the market?
- The chatbot could share jokes about embarrassing itself in front of its personal trainer.
- You could create stories that direct followers to engage with the chatbot for exercise tips.
- You could ask users to submit their funny gym stories via the chatbot for use in a wider campaign.
The list could go on and on, there’s endless room for creativity.
A single chatbot can be used to drastically improve a brand's reach and popularity while working to improve brand recall.
Imagine if every marketing campaign you created had an ambassador, able to interact with every single person that saw your campaign.
That’s a chatbot.
Not only does this help improve the campaign’s overall effectiveness, but the extra layer of interactivity also helps brands stand out from the crowd.
Next time you’re brainstorming marketing or sales initiatives, take a bit of time to build an initiative centred around an Instagram chatbot.
Sales, sales, and more sales
With 80% of Instagram users using Instagram to decide if it’s worth purchasing a product (source), it’s vital brands make the most of this potentially lucrative channel.
Chatbots provide what influencers cannot, interactive engagement.
They answer questions, put minds and ease and generate excitement.
In short, chatbots are a personal shopper for every single follower.
Turn Instagram stories into a stable revenue source
Instagram stories can be used to promote direct engagement. A brand can ask their followers to send them a direct message with a specific keyword, such as ‘Black Friday Sale’. When a follower sends this keyword, it will trigger a highly targeted conversation.
This enables brands to bring their social campaigns to life, following up campaigns with targeted conversations. These conversations can be as simple as providing discount codes to complex, multi-branch conversations promoting a multitude of products. When you’re already taking time to curate social content, why not take the extra step that makes it more impactful and engaging?
There’s quite literally an unlimited number of routes a brand can take to use chatbots and Instagram stories to increase sales, here are a few ideas to play around with:
- Encouraging followers to engage with flash sales.
- Creating unique conversations that build interest around a product launch.
- Giving a marketing campaign that interactive edge, helping with the final push towards a conversion.
Automate social selling
The modern consumer, and particularly younger audiences, look for easy purchasing.
As they’re often on a mobile device, consumers don’t want to be bounced from webpage to webpage to just buy a product.
When you take into account that Instagram users acknowledge the app makes them more likely to complete an impulse purchase (source), ensuring a seamless experience is paramount.
This is where chatbots come in.
Chatbots tell the follower about the product, recommend alternatives, and answer any questions they may have.
To put it simply, an Instagram chatbot brings your offering to life.
After deploying a chatbot on Instagram, a creative team can provide an integrated campaign that attracts attention through stories before closing the sale within a custom conversation.
This can happen 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Bring in leads that actually care
Every salesperson I’ve worked with has said the same thing.
“10 leads that are actually interested are better than 100 that don’t really care.”
The warmer the lead, the easier the sale.
Chatbots warm leads, breaking down the communication barrier through automated conversations.
Before passing leads to your sales team, it’s easy to create a chatbot that:
- Pre-qualifies the lead, ensuring they are worth a human agent’s time.
- Answers any initial questions the lead may have, whetting their appetite and removing doubts.
- Shares sales collateral, better informing the lead of a brand’s product or services.
Bring your ads to life
Advertising on Instagram?
What happens after a user clicks on one of your adverts?
They’ll likely go to a landing page or a new post.
A bit like every other advert they have clicked on in the last 10 years.
The issue with the old technique of following ads up with static mediums is it’s easy to lose the user.
They could get distracted, not find the information they need, or simply forget.
You’ve succeeded in the hard part, getting their attention. You don’t want to lose them with your follow up.
The more innovative brands are following up their social ads with chatbot conversations. After clicking on an ad, the user is taken to a bespoke chatbot conversation.
From here, the chatbot is able to answer any questions the user may have. It also helps make the experience more engaging, increasing the likelihood the user will either convert there and then or in the future.
Instagram chatbots: an opportunity for the creative
Instagram rewards creative efforts.
Its fast-paced nature means brands have to regularly offer new content, engage in rising topics and respond to thousands of messages.
In the same way as a typical website chatbot, an Instagram chatbot helps reduce some of this pressure.
They give brands the breathing room they need to focus on more high-value activities.
But, that’s not all an Instagram chatbot is capable of.
In the right hands, they can help skyrocket a brand to the forefront of their follower’s minds. Once there, memorable interactions and amusing messages can help the brand remain in the follower’s mind for weeks to come.
Next time you’re thinking about Instagram, take 5 to build a chatbot into your ideas. It’s likely you’ll find a range of exciting avenues to explore.