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sales chatbots

To bot, or not to bot?

Main illustration: Meg Hunt

The challenge with automation is knowing when you’ve gone too far, when you’ve automated to the point of ruining the very thing you sought in the first place: a better customer experience.

Chatbots are a prime example of when we couldn’t see the forest for the trees. The failure of bots to gain traction is well-documented. For example, the website Chatbot Fail is a virtual graveyard of chatbots that don’t solve a real problem:

Poncho, the short-lived weather app that failed to recall that Googling “weather” is much faster.

A rather tedious shopping experience

Despite some questionable experiments over the last few years of peak chatbot hype, we can’t seem to get enough of them. For sales and marketing teams, the potential of chatbots is too alluring: the ability to automate a chunk of the sales cycle, thereby helping go-to-market functions grow faster, with less. Product aside, why can’t we seem to get it right?

One problem is a lack of understanding over what chatbots can really offer us. The question many sales and marketing folks ask themselves is, “Should we use a chatbot like everyone else?” A better question is: “When should we use a chatbot?”

Today we’re releasing Bot or Not, a light-hearted way for sales and marketing folks to learn when to use a chatbot, and when to leave things to the emotional intelligence experts, humans. We’ve spent the past few years thinking deeply about what chatbots are good and bad for. Operator, our own chatbot, has been out in the wild helping capture and qualify leads, for 50 weeks now. We’ve learned loads about when to draw the line between human and Operator, and are thrilled to share our learnings with you.

If you’re as excited as we are about how chatbots can grow your business, you can get started right here.

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