The demand for digital services is constantly rising. Customers increasingly interact with businesses outside business hours and expect to find solutions to their problems without delay.
At the same time, marketing teams actively look for new ways to optimise customer experiences and boost lead generation online.
This is where chatbots come into play.
They provide a conversational way for businesses to convert website traffic into sales-qualified leads while offering support 24/7.
In this guide, we provide an overview of chatbots, how to use them for lead generation, how to easily set them up, and examples of types of chatbots for marketing.
Table of contents:
1. What are lead generation chatbots?
2. How to use chatbots in lead generation
3. When to use chatbots for lead generation
4. Setting up a lead generation chatbot
5. Types of lead generation chatbots
What are lead generation chatbots?
Chatbots are used to automate conversations between companies and their customers.
They are often built on AI and machine learning or using simple drag-and-drop interfaces such as giosg Interaction Designer.
Lead generation chatbots use a conversational approach in order to gather customer information, guide customers in the buying process or qualify leads.
They allow website visitors to navigate through a tree of options and enable businesses to actively engage with prospects thus keeping them from leaving your website unconverted.
An efficient tool throughout the purchasing journey, chatbots help build relationships with customers and prospects, and engage with them 24/7.
64% of customers claim that 24/7 service is the best feature of chatbots.
Chatbots ensure you never miss a lead by assisting your website visitors outside of business hours, when your sales team or live chat operators are not available.
Read more about the benefit of using a chatbot as lead generation tool.
How to use chatbots for lead generation?
Chatbots can have multiple roles in lead generation.
They help companies connect with more prospects, gather valuable contact information and nurture prospects through the marketing funnel.
But they can also help generate more quality leads by making it easier to reach and select the prospects who are most likely to make a purchase or convert into a lead.
Generate more leads
When a new or returning visitor enters your website, a lead generation chatbot can be triggered with a proactive message welcoming visitors to the site.
To activate a potential customer the bot can appear to offer a discount for a first time visitor or promote a company newsletter subscription.
Chatbots can also invite a curious prospect to sign up for a webinar or engage with visitors to stop them leaving the website.
Qualify more leads
Lead generation chatbots not only help convert website visitors, but can be used to gather selected information from leads.
This information can help determine how sales qualified leads are or how far they are in their buyer journey.
To do this, a lead generation chatbot will be set up with qualifying questions. These questions should be specific to your company’s sales process as well as MQL and SQL definitions.
There might be a clear ‘gatekeeping’ question that immediately qualifies a prospect for you, while others have to go through more extensive questions.
A lead generation chatbot can, for example, start a conversation with a B2B prospect by asking to give a budget range and schedule, and based on the answer can either:
- Send them directly to the sales team or,
- Continue the conversation by asking further qualifying questions.
Based on the answers to specific questions, a chatbot can also be used to showcase products or services that are relevant to the prospect.
Furthermore, by gathering your most frequently asked questions in a chatbot, customers are able to get assistance with simple inquiries as well.
Chatbots can successfully solve 80% of customer problems
Why does this benefit marketers as well? By easily providing answers to relevant questions you also reduce the friction for leads to book an appointment or demo.
The data gathered in your bot can also further help you understand your target audience better and gain insight into what your customers are looking for.
Find out how to build your chatbot flow and what qualifying questions you should be asking with chatbots in our blog post.
When to use chatbots for lead generation?
Supporting your customer journey
A lead generation chatbot not only takes care of your bottom of the funnel, but can support your entire conversion journey.
It can help to create awareness, educate your website visitors, and support their decision making process.
As lead generation chatbots gather data, they can also help you better understand your target audience and identify potential customers by gathering information on them.
Replacing static forms with interactive bots that are proactive help you engage and cultivate a relationship with your potential customers.
Here are a few different ways to utilise chatbots throughout your marketing funnel:
Top of the Funnel
Use a lead generation chatbot to promote content downloads and improve your lead capture in the awareness stage.
Middle of the Funnel
Chatbots can help to promote your newsletter sign-ups, webinars and other
consideration level content.
Using interactive content such as chatbots to promote newsletters can increase subscriptions by 4X.
Bottom of the Funnel
After identifying high-intent leads, chatbots can be used to book a demo, meeting or start a free trial. Valuable lead contact information can also be sent from the chatbot directly to your sales team.
Building positive customer experiences
It’s clear that chatbots are an effective marketing automation tool for straightforward approaches like booking an appointment for a demo session with your prospect.
They are not only designed to support marketing and sales efforts but also help customer service teams assist existing customers.
However, chatbots are rarely capable of answering complex questions or completing the final steps of the sales process.
Therefore, a human touch is usually required.
At best, chatbots and live agents can work as a team supporting one another in building positive customer experiences.
Before implementing a chatbot, it’s important that you decide what the role of the chatbot is, whether it is to generate leads collecting certain information or cultivate relationships with existing customers visiting your page.
There are a number of things to take into consideration when designing and setting up a lead generation chatbot.
To help you get an idea of what steps to take, here’s the process we typically go through with our customers to get them started:
1) Start by defining your objectives
Your company’s business goals and objectives should define what you are ultimately trying to achieve with the chatbot.
2) Decide what qualifies a lead
In order to formulate the questions your chatbot will ask, consider what information your sales team needs to qualify a lead.
What questions and answers should your chatbot cover?
This will depend on your objectives and should be adjusted according to your marketing funnel. At the top of funnel you may only want to collect email.
But as leads make it further down your funnel, the bot can gather more specific data.
3) Define your chatbot tone of voice
Knowing your audience is also key in defining the tone of voice and terminology of your chatbot.
While the tone of voice should follow your brand guidelines to deliver a consistent message and build trust among the audience, the terminology should match the words your audience typically uses.
4) Decide how to target your chatbot
What pages should your lead generation chatbot pop up on? What’s the right moment for it to be triggered?
You can target your chatbot according to:
- Which page the visitor is on
- Where they came from: previous page, campaign URL, traffic source
- The geographical location of the visitor
- What device they are using - desktop, mobile or tablet
- The number of times they have been on your website
5) Use A/B testing to determine which targeting is the most effective
Testing will show you which leads respond to your chatbot messaging, on which page and at what moment of time, allowing you to consistently optimise your bot.
6) Design the flow of your chatbot while keeping your business goals in mind
We recommend to focus on the essentials, keep the flow simple and make each question lead to the same number of paths.
7) Decide where your chatbot leads are sent to
Do you want them to go directly to your sales team? Which department will handle lead nurturing?
Integrating your chatbot with your existing CRM and marketing automation systems will help create a smooth handover process.
Now you are ready to build your bot!
Creating a lead generation chatbot should be easy
With giosg Interaction Designer, creating, publishing and modifying your chatbot is simple.
After you’ve published your lead generation chatbot, you can always go back and edit it in real-time. No need to rely on your tech team or a marketing agency.
Find out what you should take into consideration before investing in a chatbot platform for marketing in our blog.
With giosg, you can modify your chatbot content and targeting according to your A/B tests results, new campaigns or updated business objectives.
Types of lead generation chatbots
Chatbots can be used in many ways to communicate and engage with your audience to generate leads. We have gathered a few chatbot examples to get your inspired to get started:
Lead generation bots
Lead generation bots can be created easily by using a decision tree logic. This means the lead follows a predetermined path by clicking on the options provided by the chatbot, instead of typing their own query or question.
These simple chatbots will improve the quality of your lead capture helping segment and gather more information on leads, before you send them to your sales team.
FAQ chatbots can have multiple purposes.
They not only help you guide website visitors to the right content on your website but can also be used to generate leads.
FAQ chatbots gather all frequently asked questions into one place and provide visitors the option of self-service.
Chatbots for booking appointments
These chatbots provide real-time visibility into calendar availability. Customers and prospects can directly schedule a demo, book an appointment or make a reservation in the chatbot.
With newsletter bots you can turn a simple pop-up window into a friendly, conversational bot that allows you to collect feedback on your communication and lets the audience rate your content.
Lead magnet chatbots
Make your content download forms conversational.
Chatbots allow you to collect more information in exchange for content, without overwhelming your leads.
We've placed one on this page too! It pop-ups up on the side of the page, enabling you to download this guide as a PDF. Have you tried clicking on it yet?
Chatbots for your lead magnets get your customers or prospects to convert and provide their information to the chatbot to receive gated content, such as guides, white papers, webinar recordings or similar.
Chatbots can be used to promote your new products or campaigns. They can work as excellent promoters, and help your visitors take advantage of deals.
If you’re having a special sale, you can use your chatbot to communicate your new offers to the visitor.
Better yet, you could use promotions as an incentive and give rewards to those who are willing to give their details.
The reward could be a discount on a product or service or a similar benefit. This is a great way to stop your visitors leaving your website unconverted.
There are several reasons to start using chatbots for lead generation.
First of all, chatbots can help you simplify and streamline lead generation and personalise user interactions.
They can help you deliver information effectively to the right visitor at the right time and continue to generate leads 24/7.
All these benefits can help you to improve customer experience and boost your operational efficiency, and thus give you an advantage over your competitors.
If you’re interested in implementing a lead generation chatbot, don't hesitate to book a demo with one of our experts or sign up for your 30-day free trial of giosg Interaction Designer.