LivePerson in the News: Why Snap Wins, Google’s Click to Message, & How to Use Bots
Our mission to create meaningful connections is the core of our platform, LiveEngage, which facilitates and strengthens relationships between brands and consumers. Recent work to spread this mission includes several consumer surveys, empowering enterprise brands with Google’s new click-to-message AdWords extension, and our continued research around bots.
As the data produces a more nuanced portrait of consumers and their use of technology, it supports what we’ve known for a while: Messaging continues to dominate screen-time behavior, and bots have significant, long-term implications for the customer experience. The following stories outline some of our most interesting findings, with much more to be released in the coming weeks.
Snap triumphs over the phone.
The traditional phone call has been on a path toward extinction for years. Our September survey of 3,000 smartphone users (ages 18 – 65) indicates that the time has finally arrived. Sending a message is almost always more convenient than making a call. And new data proves consumers agree.
If millennials could only keep one app on their phone, 35% would choose text, 17% would opt for Snap, and only 14% would hold on to the phone. In the words of Business Insider, “Millennials hate calling on the phone so much that they'd rather delete their main phone app altogether than lose Snapchat.” (Also interesting: Pokémon Go held at 9%.)
It’s not just millennials who turn to messaging and apps for connecting with friends and family — as well as brands. Across respondents of all ages, the main phone app was only the fifth most commonly used app, following SMS (as #1), email, Facebook, and Facebook Messenger.
Kia motors ahead with Google’s click-to-message AdWords extension.
In increasing numbers, consumers are not only realizing the convenience of messaging with a brand, but they’re realizing it can be a reality. The on-demand economy paves the way for consumers who expect assistance immediately, through their channel of choice. And Google has responded by implementing a click-to-message AdWords extension, advancing customer support through mobile search ads and chatbots. One of the first brands to get on board is Kia, with LiveEngage technology facilitating messaging conversations with a local dealer right from a search ad.
As MediaPost elaborates, “The ads allow Kia customers to directly connect to service agents by clicking the ‘text’ icon on Google’s homepage. Consumers who see a sponsored search result can tap the messaging icon and immediately start a text message conversation with the advertiser to make a purchase or get information.”
>> Related read: Google’s Latest Search Ads Allow Shoppers to Text Retailers
Through improved human-to-human service, Kia aims to fortify the connection it has with its customer base as well as grow trust. Given the strong initial responses to this click-to-message program, Kia plans to add more service options — like video calls and a chatbot — in the near future.
For more on how Kia invests in the consumer experience — as well as the technology powering it — read the full story on MediaPost. You can also check out MarketingDive, Mobile Marketing Watch, B&T, Automotive News, and CMO.com.au for their takes.
Why bots have staying power.
Bots certainly have their downside. Used correctly, however, the good pros outweighs the cons. For one, they provide instant, around-the-clock service to consumers in need.
As LivePerson’s head of global communications and research Rurik Bradbury tells PYMNTS.com, “Chatbots can bring speed of service, instant availability (24/7), and, when done right, a simple interface, which leads to streamlined conversations.”
But don’t overlook the risks associated with artificial intelligence either. Consumers’ primary headaches occur when a bot misunderstands a situation and either leads them down the wrong path or can’t offer a solution at all. Brands that acknowledge these limitations can work around them and escalate the conversation to a human as needed. Rurik’s recommendation? “Stop thinking about [bots] as a panacea that can automate how companies can speak to customers. Start thinking of them as point solutions to speed up and automate routine conversations — address changes, payment details, forms to fill out.”
Bonus: PYMNTS has even more insights on the practical usage of chatbots that hae already been implemented. Check out “Banks and Credit Card Bots,” “Chatbot Tracker: Hillary, Donald, and Their Chatbots,” “Let Your Chatbot Be Your (Airline Travel) Guide,” and “Shipping Gifts and Customer Return Rate.”
It's an exciting time at LivePerson, as we watch more brands eschew the 1-800 numbers for customer service in favor of messaging in their consumer engagement strategies. As we wrap up 2016 and look ahead to the new year, we can see a future in which consumers not only hold no more but also develop lasting, more meaningful connections with the brands they choose in the manner that's most convenient to them.
Want to stay abreast of messaging, bots, and all things LivePerson? Subscribe to the Connected Customer blog.