With conversion rates plummeting across the industry, it’s critical for MSPs and VARs to take full advantage of every lead. The sooner you respond to each lead, the more likely you are to convert that lead. Responding within minutes is best, but reacting that quickly is a challenge. After all, with the internet, leads can find you 24/7, but even the best marketing teams occasionally require sleep. Enter chatbots for IT MSPs and VARs.
Although entrusting your lead generation and customer support to chatbots might seem daunting, B2B tech companies are finding great success and improved lead conversion, especially when integrating chatbots into an account-based marketing approach. Here is the case for chatbots and best practices for integration.
The Case for Chatbots
Gartner predicts that by 2020, the average person will talk more to chatbots than their own spouse. Although they are an increasingly common presence in consumer-facing industries, B2B firms are a bit behind the curve, often relying on forms, phone calls, and emails to follow-up with potential leads. Chatbots can:
- Qualify leads. Chatbots can ask qualifying questions, ensuring your team members focus on qualified, promising prospects.
- Offer personalized messaging. You can tailor the chatbot script to mirror the content of each web page, asking relevant, real-time questions.
- Provide context during the marketing-to-sales handoff: Lead handoff can feel precarious, and you don’t want warm leads to cool. Chatbot message histories provide a valuable, real-time history of all the conversations your prospect has had, ensuring you can make the most of each lead.
Chatbots are especially well-positioned for an account-based marketing approach. With account-based marketing, rather than casting a wide net and hoping for the best, your marketing team focuses on cultivating targeted accounts who can benefit from your expertise. Account-based marketing requires a personalized approach, tailoring your messaging to each account. When someone reaches out from one of your target accounts, you want to respond as quickly as possible.
Chatbots can be programmed to recognize these targeted prospects and tailor their messaging to that prospect, ensuring the lead is nurtured and handed off to sales as quickly as possible while being engaged every step of the way.
Best Practices for Chatbot Integration
Integrating chatbots into IT MSPs takes careful planning. Best practices for chatbot integration include:
- Develop your chatbot with a goal in mind. This includes where your chatbot is hosted (on your website? Integrated with a third-party platform such as Facebook?) and what exactly you want your chatbot to do. They are excellent for cultivating leads, of course, but they can also help service existing accounts. What do you want your chatbot to do?
- Introduce your chatbot. When prospects interact with your chatbot, they may not know what to do without guidance. Consider having your chatbot introduce itself and explain how it can help.
- Give it personality. Your chatbot is an extension of your firm. Its conversations should reflect your branding and tone. Make it warm and engaging.
- Plan for ambiguity. Users may not always ask questions the chatbots understand. Plan for misunderstandings and have an engaging response planned.
Ready to start the conversation on how chatbots for IT MSPs can improve conversion? We are too. Let us know how we can help.