3 Examples of Businesses Using Robot Technology Perfectly

There has always been a perception that robots will take over the world. In what is certainly a glance at the future of how we communicate, chatbots (a computer program which conducts a conversation via auditory or textual methods) are already, trolling, stalking and surrounding us online.

Chatbots are popping up everywhere and can be beneficial in any industry. They offer marketers from any industry the opportunity to engage with consumers on a personal, direct level -- as long as they can capture (and hold) users' attention with an engaging narrative. 

Some brands already seem to be getting the balance right. A bot needs to capture a user's attention quickly and display a healthy curiosity about their new acquaintance, but too much curiosity can easily turn someone off.

Most people have interacted with some kind of bot, like Alexa or Siri, and now use them in their every day lives.. Here are three other well known brands that have started to use this technology to grow sales:

1) Whole Foods

 This shouldn’t be too surprising coming from a company now owned by Amazon. Tonight's dinner plans could be just a single emoji send away. Just send a taco, pizza, or sushi emoji & recipes will follow. Whole Foods' Facebook Messenger bot -- launched in 2016 at MobileBeat -- lets users search for recipes, products, and food inspiration without leaving Messenger. The friendly foodie bot was developed by Conversable, and the team plans to expand its capabilities in the near future to include coupons, a saved recipe library, and direct shopping.  If you aren't sure what you're looking for, you can give the bot some details about your dietary restrictions and flavor preferences, and it will serve up some options. And, if you're in the mood to embrace every millennial stereotype, you can just send an emoji of a food item for instant recommendations. The future is truly now

 

2) 1-800-Flowers

The flower delivery company was one of Facebook Messenger’s first bots. Quite simply, the bot helps users send flowers and gifts directly from the messaging app, instead of through the company’s online store. The bot even makes gift suggestions (if you’d like to send bright “Get Well” flowers to a certain hospital, for example), processes orders, and sends shipping updates.

1-800-Flowers lends itself particularly well to this kind of chatbot — people buying flowers are typically looking to find the appropriate selection quickly, and get live updates about delivery timing.

3) Starbucks

Perfect proof that simplicity can be the best route, the Starbucks Barista bot for Facebook Messenger serves a very specific, very important purpose: it orders you coffee.

When you have a desperate need for a java fix with minimal human interaction and effort, this bot has you covered. The bot even understands complex orders with special requests, like "venti skinny vanilla latte please with two extra pumps of vanilla, three added shots, and can I have soy please." Complicated people can rejoice that their neediness is through a screen & they won’t have to see the daily eye rolls from their baristas.

Given the complexity and cost behind developing this level of technology, it simply isn't feasible for most businesses to implement this strategy in their business today. However, as consumer attention begins to shift towards voice and bot enabled controls, the barrier to entry becomes more affordable. Every business should always plan for the future to make sure you don't get left behind.

 

 

Ann Ciambrone