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Here’s how Bengaluru’s top retail mall leveraged WhatsApp chatbot to scale growth

WhatsApp for retail
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“Track package delivery”

“What’s my refund status?”

“Pay bill”

“Book an appointment”

If your business happens to receive customer queries like the above too often, chances are you need to consider bringing in the goodness of chatbots. More than ever, people are interacting with bots. Let’s give you some quick stats as projected by Gartner. 

One in 10 agent interactions will be automated by 2026, an increase from an estimated 1.6% of interactions today that are automated using AI.

By 2022, 70% of white-collar workers will interact with conversational platforms on a daily basis.

By 2027, chatbots will become the primary customer service channel for roughly a quarter of organizations. 

This marks a long-standing association of businesses with chatbots. 


Should your business integrate with chatbots? 

Chatbots are the perfect answer for businesses that are looking to increase customer engagement, improve lead generation, gain insights on the basis of consumer data, leverage automation, achieve scale, reduce customer servicing costs, and build an unforgettable customer experience.  

Needless to say, chatbots are meant for every industry and quite naturally, for every kind of use case be it resolving queries, seeking explanations, making reservations and bookings, paying bills, purchase, search for products, track deliveries or refunds and so much more. 

But you shouldn’t take our word for it. Read on to know how Orion Mall, one of Bengaluru’s largest malls spanning a shopping area of 8.2 lakh sq ft in the city resorted to WhatsApp chatbot to win over customers. 

 Brigade Orion Mall + Sinch = Growing customers with conversations 

Orion Mall was looking to find the best way to quickly answer customer queries about the mall. At the same time, they didn’t want these conversations to be dry and unlike humans. Till this point, brand communications were routed through traditional channels like SMS and emails but at a time when customers are seeking information in a jiffy, Brigade wanted to keep it simple. What better than WhatsApp, right?

 Solution: WhatsApp chatbot to the rescue  

 Come January 2022 and Orion Mall introduced Orion Genie, a dedicated chatbot that could take up customer queries 24/7 and release important information pertaining to shops or products available in the mail, movie showtimes, table reservations for restaurants in Brigade Orion Mall or even ongoing events at the mall. It can also help you arrive at the mall by mailing you the location and keep your abreast of what’s happening at Orion Mall through its social media channels. 


The results: Unparalleled customer experience

In very little time, Orion Genie, helped the business scale effectively. The brand saw more than 3,500 active conversations and won over 2,000 users through the bot. Not just this, 15,000 data items were integrated in the chatbot flow to enhance the quality of conversations progressively. 

“The team at Sinch listened to our needs since the first meeting and understood exactly what we wanted," says Rahul Malhotra, Marketing Head at Brigade Group.


Understanding conversational messaging and how customers respond 

Most marketers believe that for any direct marketing campaigns, 96% of those on the mailing list will not respond! So, the four percent that actually respond is a sizeable conversion for the marketing team.

If you believe that 96% do not respond, you may want to think again. No two customers are the same. They have their own way of interacting with the messages you send them. Some may respond on the channel they asked you to. Some others prefer to research more, go to your website, and perhaps click on your Request a demo button.

See, they do respond but businesses tend to go for metrics that sometimes, do not show a wholesome picture. This is exactly why conversational messaging is being discussed widely in the C-Suite, as a business priority, for it impacts the overall customer experience. And conversational messaging becomes much simpler when your business reaches out to customers on a channel that they love, WhatsApp being one. 
 Conversational commerce


Best practices for building chatbot experiences

Know the context

There are so many ways a customer can reach out to your business. Through the multiple channels, is your customer getting the same answer to their query or is your business pulling them to different directions? A personalized experience is foremost. Understand what your customer may have encountered and release simple, effective tips for resolution. For this, historical conversations are as important as current ones and gives you valuable data and insights into customer’s preferences.

Master natural language and usage

Small business, simple use cases? It’s easy. However, it does become tricky when your customers use language correctly, though differently.

Sample this. 

Ayush may prefer asking a food delivery store on their channel, “Can I see the menu?” Varun needs to see the menu but asks for it in a different way, “What are you serving at the moment.” No two customers are the same, right? Hence, the need to master the language of the masses and common forms of usage. Intent training, therefore, becomes important. 

Reduce friction

Customers on the go hardly find the time to sit, stop and think. Prioritize clarity in your interactions for a smooth interaction.

 If the bot needs to process an application and is asking the customer to confirm their address, how about using “Confirm your full address”, rather than “Where do you live?”. Short, crisp and conveys the intent to reduce friction and ambiguity. 

 Bank on a conversational design 

Successful communication does not only depend on what we are saying but also on how we are saying something! Most enterprises are still taking baby steps to ensure this. Human language is complex and if you really looking to crack the game, combine the best of copywriting, UX design, interaction design, visual design, voice, and audio design. 

 Learn, improve, evolve

Well, your life’s mantra can very well be applied to the bots. Based on the many conversations your business has with customers, learn from the way they use language. Constantly improve your language and design and improve based on customer feedback. 

Eyes on the customer 

Last but not least, never overlook the following. 

•    Who will use the chatbot?
•    What will the bot solve?
•    What will success look like?

 Going beyond customer support?

Most organizations think about automating customer support, frequently asked questions (FAQ) and optimizing customer and employee processes when they want to integrate a chatbot in the customer or employee experience. However, they often forget that there’s a big opportunity in sales and marketing as well.