I’ve been on an absolute tear lately. I’ve found my newest obsession and have trained my laser focus on it. It’s something I do. Ask our President / my partner in crime, Laurel. She’s the one that has to listen to my obsessions all the time. First Bob Dylan, then space, then sneakers and now–chatbots… and sneakers still.

I finished 10 hours of chatbot training videos in one day.

Now you get to deal with my obsessions instead. Let me tell you how we increased our subscriber list by 104.35% in just two months using Facebook Messenger chatbots.

What are Chatbots?

Messenger bots are programmable automated messages that engage viewers with simple AI. In other words–little robot marketers.

Facebook opened the doors to their Messenger platform for chatbots in April 2017 and it quickly became one of the most powerful–but underutilized–methods of getting your message to your target audience. The Facebook Messenger app is the second most used app on iOS with over 900 million active users per month.

Let’s Chat

We were looking for a way to provide actionable marketing advice and strategies for our audience but cut through the already noisy realm of email and social media. There were already companies owning those spaces with a loyal following.

The first chatbot we created was for an Easter Egg contest we were running to promote the launch of the new Rally website. Users had to hunt through our website to find the hidden easter egg–spoiler alert: it was How I Beat Shaq–and submit their answers to the chatbot.

There was a short period of organic growth where we promoted the chatbot in the following ways:

  • Including slides in conference presentation I gave
  • Posting to company social pages
  • Posting to personal profiles
  • Linking to it from our content

Then we developed RallyChats.

RallyChats are a weekly newsletter of the best-curated marketing content found on the ‘Net. Taking a page from the Daily Carnage, we focused on compiling content instead of creating it. We provided a TL;DR (too long; didn’t read) and our own take on the information.

The difference between it and a normal newsletter is that ours goes straight into their Facebook Messenger inbox, mobile push notification and all.

We wanted to stand out as much as possible and carried that throughout the strategy creation. We didn’t try to make our chatbot sound human. We wanted to lean into the fact that it was a bot and so Rallybot 9000 was brought online. With references to killing all humans and T2, we accomplished that goal.

Let’s Promote

Facebook was our main source of promotion, specifically Facebook advertising. Their Click-to-Messenger ads made this easy by linking users to the sign up for RallyChats with a single click.

We created a robust audience target using:

  • Custom audiences including clients and email subscribers
  • A Lookalike audience targeting users that matched the attributes of the above audience

We A/B tested multiple ad variants and found the following combinations worked best for our audience:

The Results

The ads resulted in a 104.35% increase in subscribers. We now have direct access to these users Facebook Messenger inbox. The RallyChats themselves are seeing similarly fantastic results with open rates and click-through rates well above the industry average for emails:

  • Avg. Open Rate – 92.03%
  • Avg. Click-Through Rate – 22.35%
  • Four new clients

And that’s just within the past two months.

If you’re interested in chatting about chatbots or just want to become the sharpest marketer in the room, sign up for RallyChats using the form on this page.

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