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Unleashing the power of Instagram as a strong commerce channel

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The Economic Times
15th January, 2022 10:09 IST

The evolution of conversational AI and messaging channels has transformed the way brands communicate with customers. Meta’s family of apps (Messenger, WhatsApp & Instagram) provide a massive opportunity for brands to create meaningful conversations with their customers. This has forced messaging channels to become an integral part of every brand’s digital transformation strategy.

Messaging is an integral part of Instagram; it helps customers connect with brands personally through multiple avenues like Feed, Stories, Mentions, and DM's. The vision is to make Instagram a vital customer service and commerce channel for businesses of all sizes. The release of Instagram Messenger API for business has made it easier for brands to manage their customer communication at scale. The Messenger API rollout is truly a game-changer for brands to drive a higher volume of conversations.

Let us see how an AI-powered Instagram chatbot can help your brand unleash the power of Instagram:

Boost sales
Instagram is a discovery channel for users to find products and services. Implementing an AI-powered chatbot equips brands to show their latest products & collections, promote offers & contextually upsell and cross-sell, driving higher sales. Deploying an AI-powered chatbot on Instagram is similar to installing an advanced sales rep that understands customer requirements and guides them to make the right choice. This helps in accelerating the decision-making process for customers, increases average cart order, improves conversions and drives repeat purchases.

Generate quality leads
Brands can also nurture and qualify leads with AI-powered conversations. The AI chatbot can collect basic user details such as email, phone number, and intent of reaching out and seamlessly transfer to a live sales agent when needed in real-time.

Enhance customer service
Being 24/7 present for your customer is the key to winning their hearts. 90% of customers rate an "immediate" response as necessary, and roughly 50% of them would switch to a new brand after one bad experience. So the stakes are pretty high.

With AI chatbots, your brand can respond on one-on-one basis to thousands of DMs & comments and resolve queries more quickly and efficiently in their preferred language of communication.

The chatbots can answer common queries like price, order statuses, cancellations, etc. If a customer query is complex, it can seamlessly escalate to a live agent based on their skill sets and current workload, resulting in faster response, shorter wait times, and higher customer satisfaction.

Drive deeper engagement
Trigger keyword-based conversations
Encourage conversations based on specific keywords to generate user interest. Promote keywords within the caption of your IG post, prompting customers to use them to chat with your brand in DMs and have automated conversation flows to improve engagement & conversions.

Start a conversation with new and existing users about your products, offers, discounts, and more! Ice breakers within Instagram chatbots are great for showcasing your product catalog and providing quick replies to frequently asked questions such as 'Do you offer free shipping?'

Advertising CTA
50% are more interested in a brand when they see ads on Instagram. So ads play an important role. You can run Ads with a CTA that integrates with the chatbot and opens automated conversation flows. That will help collect the essential customer details and also assist them in getting more information about the product that interests them.

These are a few examples, but brands are exploring innovative ways to use Instagram to strengthen their engagement and increase conversions.

As 200 million Instagram users visit at least one business profile daily, the platform demands a focused approach. Instagram is a great place for brands to start a personal connection with customers and lend it across their entire buying journey, and an Instagram chatbot can help accomplish this feat at scale. Brands need to maneuver and capitalize on these advancements to strengthen their customer experience strategy.

An AI Instagram chatbot can:

  • Help in growing business and clock higher sales numbers by guiding customers at each stage without having them wait or consider competition.
  • Provide on-demand support to its customers, which helps to gain customer loyalty and improve retention.
  • Elevate customer experience by interacting in a quick, personalized manner.
  • Manage multiple conversations without increasing support costs and much more!
The writer is co-founder and CEO of Haptik.

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