What are chatbots? Why does your streaming business need one?

Chatbots in streaming business - 1R robot concept

Can a chatbot help my streaming business grow faster? If this was the question in your mind while opening this post, let’s get started.

Today, customers value a company’s experience as much as the products or services it offers. So chatbots are becoming increasingly popular.

71% of people want to use messaging apps to get customer help, many do it because they want their problem solved fast.

User Stats - Chabot
User Stats – Chabot

A few decades ago, banks were unsure if customers would use an ATM over a bank teller. Tellers were worried about losing their job to a machine. Fast-forward to 2022. Both did not happen!

Chatbots are now on the same page as ATMs were then. Businesses are worried about their efficiency, and customer support agents worry about being replaced.

Are these worries valid? No. Here is why 

  • Today, it can be hard to find if you are talking to a bot or a person. Thanks to Artificial Intelligence (AI) and advanced turing tests.
  • Bots are to assist support executives by reducing workload. Not to replace them.

What are chatbots?

Chatbots are seen as one of the most intriguing instances of human-machine interaction.

The chatbot is basically a conversational user interface that can be linked to a variety of data sources by an API to provide information on requests, such as order information, status updates, and user navigation guides.

To make it more simple, a chatbot is software powered by AI, that mimics human conversations to resolve customer issues.

Types of chatbots

There are two types of chatbots,

  1. AI chatbot (more expensive, real-time learning and interaction)
  2. A rules-based chatbot (what most small and medium businesses use)

1. AI Chatbots

Based on existing data, AI bots identify user intent and deliver the response they think is the right answer. Over a period of time, by observing correct & incorrect answers, they get better at determining what the right answer is. Typical examples are Amazon’s Alexa, Apple’s Siri, Google Assistant, and Microsoft’s Cortona. 

Though they are incredibly powerful, it takes a lot of time, effort, and expertise to build them. 

Moreover, your streaming business may not need a bot with this level of competence.

2. Rules-based Chatbots

A rules-based chatbot carries out actions according to the rules and definitions you define on the user interface.

Rules need to be set to recognize a particular keyword or group of keywords. For instance, you could set up to respond if someone types in “pricing” or “subscription plans” but also if they respond with “I want to know the price of your subscription plan” and your target keyword is “price” or “subscription”.  

You can evaluate the responses sent by the bot and set alternate responses if there is a need.

How do chatbots work?

How do Chatbots Work?
How do Chatbots Work?

A chatbot’s primary function is to identify the user’s requests and extract relevant keywords. 

Next, it tries to identify the intent with the supporting words (how, why, when, can, etc).

It then retrieves relevant answers from the knowledge data sources – website, knowledgebase, FAQ section, or any other database that you connect to it as a knowledge database. 

Finally, it shares the knowledge with the user, based on the intent of the question. 

A support user can evaluate the process and fine-tune the knowledge base as required.

Over a period of time, the bots’ efficiency improves as it has a feedback history and a more classified knowledge base.

Why does your streaming business need a chatbot?

With chatbots, your business can increase operational efficiency, save money, and serve users more conveniently.

Chatbots Stats Infographic
Chatbots Stats Infographic

56% of users said that they would rather text customer service than call them to get the issue resolved.

1. Chatbots are available 24/7

You may have an audience across the globe, and people tend to watch your content in different time zones. Also, people within the same region may binge-watch your content in the wee hours. 

Keeping support agents open around the clock is difficult, especially for small and medium-sized streaming businesses. This means when a customer reaches out to you, they won’t get a response from you until your customer support agents are available.

A chatbot can ensure that your support system remains open all the time in one form or another. In fact, it can do more than just answer your customer’s questions. It can make movie recommendations, plan suggestions, and resolve issues.

2. Build trust

Chatbots can remember a user forever. This is impossible for a human. Furthermore, your team may have multiple support agents. Though you may have a history of user issues, a human cannot grasp all the information instantly.

Imagine, explaining your issue to 3 different people, because you get to speak with three different agents to solve a particular problem. Frustrating right? Would a frustrated user subscribe to your streaming service?

Moreover, the response time is faster with a bot. With the personalized replies that are sent instantly, the bots can build better trust and loyalty with your audience.

Chatbots for streaming business
Chatbots for streaming business.

3. Have a friendly brand voice

Chatbots can be programmed to have specific tones–like friendly, casual, formal, etc. They answer all of your customer’s questions in the same tone. This way, you can establish a brand voice. They never get annoyed when the same question is repeated by several users on the same day.

4. Communicate at a scale

You can collect information about the user through the conversations and create personas based on their interaction and social profiles. This data can be helpful in crafting personalized push notifications and email campaigns.

5. Bots are multi-lingual

Your bots can know any number of languages you want them to know. For instance, if you are a streaming service targeting India, your bot needs to know multiple languages like Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, Malayalam, Hindi, Bengali, and other Indian languages in addition to English.

It is humanely impossible to have fluency in 20+ languages. But a bot can do it.

6. Collect and analyze data

Your bots can collect data such as the device used by the user, their issue, frequency of issue, and so on. This could be helpful in fixing some of the technical glitches in your system.

For example, if users streaming HD content on android phones face an issue, you could look into the encoding settings for HD mobile devices.

Let’s take a look at Hulubot

Although Hulu has a 24×7 live telephone support team, it also has its own bot–Huluboy. While the customer support executives solve complex issues, the HuluBot solves simple issues like login troubleshooting, navigation, etc. 

Though the bot does not allow users to ask questions, it provides a thorough guide to solving some of the common troubleshooting problems.

Hulubot - Hulu support chatbot
Hulubot – Hulu support chatbot.

How to add a chatbot to your streaming service?

You need not necessarily develop a bot like how Hulu did. There are several readymade bot services that you can integrate into your OTT platform.

In most cases, chatbot vendors provide you with a code snippet for integrating into your website or application.

All you need to do is paste the code snippet into the page code either in the head or body section.

Apart from replying to the user queries in the chat window, you can also follow up with them to know if their issue is resolved. This gesture will win the loyalty of your users.

Take Away

The streaming industry is highly competitive today, and customers are always looking for solutions that are tailored to their needs. To stand out from the crowd, you must satisfy the needs of your audience. 

Therefore, your streaming service needs to make the most out of bots in terms of audience insights, onboarding, audience retention, and most importantly, customer support to build the trust and loyalty of your users.

Featured image source: FreePik Premium

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