Solid planning is key to the success of your bot.
This section will help you to understand its purpose, who the visitors are and what would make it a success. This will let you move on to the design stages with a clear vision.

There are a few main issues to consider when planning your bot:

  1. Focus – a good bot does one thing well.
  2. Simplify entry – buttons are a lot easier to press than typing, especially when on mobile
  3. It’s a conversation – structure it like a conversation
  4. Broadcasts re-engage – A user never quite stops talking to a bot
  5. No dead-ends – make sure the conversation doesn’t end
  6. Automated response – “Set and forget” the basic reader journey.

Should bots…

Pretend to be people?

No.

Users don’t mind talking to bots, but they’re offended when a “person” turns out to be a bot.

But plan to have the user ask the bot personal questions. Users invariably ask: “who are you?”, “what’s your name?”

Use emojis and slang?

Even serious brands today can speak colloquially.

Don’t underestimate emojis: they’re great contextualisation for responses – “happy/yes”, “sad/no”.

Respond to Facebook stickers as well – many users try them on bots.

Have personality and tell jokes?

Users come to bots for information, not chat.

An editorial edge helps make a bot memorable. A personality is great.

But jokes become problematic quickly – they’re just not funny the twelfth time.

Useful links

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