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How to Use Chatbots for Lead Generation

By Henok Hayle, on 26 October, 2020

Fellow marketers, small business owners, entrepreneurs and to whom it may concern, our professional day-to-day lives are designated to the great search of the ultimate lead generation strategy. That’s why in this blog we introduce you to lead generating chatbots!

Chatbot as a lead generation tool

Let’s face it, contact forms are dead and we believe generating leads with chatbot strategies will replace those old static in-page contact forms. But first things first, let’s discuss what a chatbot actually is and also why this will be the marketers’ new favourite tool. Let’s break it down step by step.

What is a chatbot?

“A chatbot is a piece of software that conducts a conversation via auditory or textual methods. Such programs are often designed to convincingly simulate how a human would behave as a conversational partner”, according to Wikipedia.

Basically, this is what a chatbot is defined as. But, of course, you as a marketer need this tool to be qualified to solve your challenges – lead generation.

What is a lead generation chatbot?

A lead generation bot is fundamentally the same as any other bot, with just a few tweaks. They are designed and built to generate leads using at least these steps:

  1. Identify potential customers
  2. Meet their interest and initiate it into products/services
  3. Or cultivate a relationship with a prospect.
  4. Offer relevant product/service

These bots use a conversational approach in order to gather client information and offer the product/service in return. This process can also be adjusted and used to qualify your leads further.  Maybe you have a complex product that requires complementary questions which in other cases can be hard to collect in one sweep.

How precisely does this beat traditional lead generation methods?

Let’s say you are visiting a website with a chatbot for the first time. The website will indicate that you are interested in trying our products and the bot will most likely greet you and ask for your name. After you provide the bot with your name it will address you accordingly throughout the whole process, which makes it a bit more personalised.

As you progress, every piece of information is saved as a variable, such as name, company, phone number and so on. Afterwards, when you leave the website and visit again a couple of days later, the bot will leverage the saved information from your last visit and best of all, tailor your experience right from the start.

We are therefore confident that you and every other visitor will get a personalised experience compared to you filling out a generic contact form – which usually drive visitors away.

So, what’s left for marketers to do?

Well, chatbots work best as a touchpoint in the entire customer journey, helping sales and support teams connect with valuable contacts and customers. Chatbots are rarely capable of answering visitors’ complex questions or completing the final steps of the sales process and therefore require a human touch. However, for more straightforward approaches like booking demos with your visitors, they are an effective marketing automation tool straight from the get-go. 

Before reaping the rewards, you of course need to build your chatbot. But don’t panic, chatbots are not hard to build in general, it just depends on the software you invest in. This is what makes them a great lead generation tool for marketers among other things, such as adjusting and modifying the objective of the tool according to whatever business focus your department has at that time. No need to involve IT or to be a tech-savvy person who loves coding and UI hassle, you will manage just fine.

Why you should use chatbots for lead generation

Consider the chatbot as a member of your sales/marketing team where its sole assignment is to generate more high-quality leads for your team. You will decide how, when and which visitor this member should address. You will even have a mandate to choose what the members’ endgame is, whether it is to generate leads, collecting certain information or just cultivate relationships of existing customers visiting your page – now imagine this member working 24/7, 365 days a year. Wouldn’t that be something?

To sum it up, here are 5 reasons why you should start using chatbots for lead generation:

  1. Simplify and streamline lead generation
  2. Personalise user interactions
  3. Deliver information effectively to the right visitor at the right time
  4. Generate leads 24/7
  5. Give you an advantage over your competitors

Want to learn more about this topic? Read our lead capture guide to get tips and best practice tactics for better converting your website leads.

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Editor's note: This blog was originally posted in 2019 but has been revamped and updated for accuracy. 

Topics: Chatbots, Lead Capture