Chatbots as part of our blog marketing stack?

Chatbots as part of our blog marketing stack?

This whole series on the blog marketing tech stack is covering a lot of ground, heh? 🙂 I guess I didn’t realize what a big topic this could turn into when I started it, but if we’re going to cover it adequately, it takes as long as it takes.

I will be turning this whole series into a big mega-guide on the topic to be published on the blog. It will have some revisions in some places and not be a carbon copy of what we’re doing here on The Edge, but it will be coming.

OK… so let us continue. And today, I’d like to talk about another tool that comes into play in the Engagement Phase of our business and moves people along. It is…

CHATBOTS

Now, to be clear, a chatbot is not a fundamental component of an online business. A lot of blog-based businesses operate just fine without the use of chatbots. However, since our series here is about the PERFECT tech stack, I feel it is necessary to see how a chatbot could fit into the bigger picture.

Personalization is a major, growing trend in online marketing. Treating each person individually rather than constantly just broadcasting the same thing to everybody is something that is becoming way more important in our marketing, but also easier to do because of the available tools. While we will discuss other tools coming up for website personalization, a chatbot is a very personalized and individual way for a person to engage with your business.

In essence, a chatbot is 1-to-1 engagement at scale. Using a bot, or a form of artificial intelligence, you can enable individual visitors to engage with your brand in a 1-to-1 environment on automatic. They can take certain actions to move along in your funnel(s), but in the way which makes the most sense for them. Then, when the time comes they need to be in touch with you directly, they can.

Having a BLOG coupled with a chatbot can be a powerful combo. Some of the things you can do are:

  • Start conversations with individual people on your blog to further along the marketing process.
  • Start those conversations in context with the content they’re viewing, thereby turning your blog into a big segmentation engine for starting conversations.
  • Generate email subscribers by offering them free downloads within the conversation, based on what they’re asking you.
  • Simply make your business less stuffy and corporate… and more personal.

People LOVE instant gratification these days. A chatbot is one way to do it.

Right now, the big trend in chatbots is with Facebook Messenger. That works out very well because Messenger is quite a powerful platform that has over 2 billion built-in users (since Facebook is so huge).

ManyChat is one of the top tools out there for building Messenger lists and chatbots. With Manychat, you can:

  • Build bots using easy drag-and-drop flows to do anything you want.
  • Customize calls to action for various parts of your site so that Messenger interactions can be tailored to where they are on your blog at the time.
  • Build Messenger lists that work similarly to email. You can actually broadcast to your Messenger List and the open rates are INSANE compared to email. Of course, this is also a private conversation so the rules are QUITE different than email, but if you know what you’re doing, it can be pretty powerful.

The use of Manychat can be a powerful addition to a full blog marketing tech stack… which is why I am adding it. I use it myself, although I can’t say that I’ve utilized it to it’s fullest whatsoever. I have some plans in the works to build up this channel more fully.

A popular alternative to Manychat is ChatFuel. I have not used this one personally (yet) but I’ve heard many good things.

If you want to get a feel for what you can do with Manychat (and ChatFuel is quite similar), check out this Youtube Playlist from Manychat. Like many things we touch on in this series, this topic could go much deeper into chatbot strategy. But, that’s not our purpose here today. If it is something you want to look into, there are plenty of resources for you.

OK, so we’ll put chatbots onto our tech stack. It will fall under both Engagement AND Subscription… seeing as it definitely performs both functions. Here’s our stack as it stands now…

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One thing that I’m hoping is pretty obvious by now is just how freakin’ POWERFUL a blog can be when it comes to online marketing.

Right there at the top of this stack is Wordpress. It spans every section of our business. But, coupled with the right tools and the right strategies, a blog is SO powerful as a way to attract and segment people at scale… then get them subscribed and converted into customers. A blog is a true marketing powerhouse when used right!

I hope it is also clear that THIS is the REAL use of a blog when it comes to marketing… and why my site is named the way it is. This isn’t about small potatoes like monetizing with Adsense ads or sprinkling affiliate links all over the place. We’ve got something much bigger in mind. 🙂

– David