Talkbots. Chatterbots. IM bots.
Also known as chatbots, these computer programs are growing in popularity in customer service and information acquisition. Why? Because, with the ability to believably simulate human conversation, more and more brands are considering this technology.
While algorithms are definitely involved in writing the responses for the bots, humans are still needed to put together the phrases and ensure the all-important human element. Instead of seeing these bots as a threat, copywriters should view this emerging trend as an opportunity. Without the brain and heart of writers, interactions would be very cold and artificial. This is why brands need assistance from content creators and marketing specialists to ensure that chatbots have some brand personality and doesn’t sound like a cold and clinical computer.
Putting the chat in chatbot
For chatbots to be truly engaging, they have to be able to pass as humans. This is where the challenge comes in. While AI (Artificial Intelligence) is rapidly growing and becoming part of the next paradigm shift in the Internet evolution, human intelligence is still needed to make the chatbot personable.
In many cases, the people writing the copy on behalf of the chatbots are the developers. Developers aren’t copywriters, and this is why it is important that content specialists are pulled in to make the conversations simple and engaging. Copywriters need to realise that this new revolution can hold vast opportunities for them if they learn the art of writing for chatbot conversations.
Here are a few things to keep in mind should you be required to write copy for chatbots:
Simple and specific
People aren’t talking to chatbots in order to get essays of information. The challenge with chatbots is to take a complex subject and make it very simple and short, but still powerful. The message needs to resonate with the user and the chatbot should ideally have a single-minded focus. Anything taking away from the core focus needs to be discarded.
Add a little emotion
Emotional connections are key. When it comes to marketing, everything is moving towards relationship building with the customer. Connecting with your audience on a deeper, emotional level is what makes all the difference. Chatbots need to be personalised and personable to be effective for customer relations. Do this by always keeping the benefit of the brand in mind and focusing on the benefits that you offer.
Guide to a goal
Before you write any copy for the chatbot, you need to carefully consider what the chatbot’s purpose is and what the end goal is. Consider whether the chatbot is aimed at customer service or providing a certain, personalised shopping experience. Use this as a starting point to guide the user through the experience with your script. An important consideration is to always think of how the person will respond to the chatbot. By thinking this way, you will write copy that promotes conversation.
While many big brands may start to work on their own chatbots in the foreseeable future, creating effective, likeable chatbot behaviour is the real challenge. Instead of shying away from new technology, copywriters should rather embrace them. Change is the only constant, and because we live in a digital era, change will only increase. Fortunately, brands don’t have to shy away from new technology either; rather, approach professional copywriters that have decided to take on the challenge of understanding and creating chatbot conversations.