As I might have mentioned, I was recently lucky enough to spend a few days over in Cannes to enjoy the annual Lions festivities. And this year I was part of the programme, chairing the ‘Digital Voices, Human Conversations’ panel, alongside Twitter’s Bruce Daisley, Pernod Ricard’s Sillie Opstrup and Skyscanner’s Sam Poullain.

Together we discussed the move towards automation, how bots are changing the relationships between brands and consumers, and the future of chatbots and automated marketing.

Some of the key takeaways included:

  • Bots can help the bottom line. As Daisley explained, if a customer service response time is cut from the average 20 minutes to less than three or four minutes, there is a fivefold increase in spend. And bots are one of the most effective ways to reduce the period people are waiting.
  • Bots should add value. As Poullain said, “Start with what you want to solve for user. Gain their trust and make it clear how it benefits them – we didn’t get our onboarding quite right at first."
  • Bots have limitations. According to Opstrup, they can’t replace humans. Instead, they need to do the jobs they are really good at, in order to give humans more time to do what we are really good at.

For more on what we talked about, check out this write up from Campaign. And if you think your brand could benefit from a bot, get in touch for (very human!) chat.