What Exactly Is a Bot?

"Bot" is a broad phrase that refers to any software that automates a task. Chatbots, which anybody can now create for Facebook Messenger, automate interaction – at least the initial parts.

The bots you may develop on Facebook Messenger are unique in that they are built with Facebook's Wit.ai Bot Engine, which can convert natural language into structured data. In a nutshell, this means that bots can interpret and understand the conversational language and learn from it. In other words, with each encounter, your bot may become "smarter."

You've almost certainly heard of artificial intelligence (AI). And this is a sort of artificial intelligence. Most chatbots use a natural language interface, but by opening up the Messenger Platform and providing developer tools like the bot engine, Facebook has made it easier to design an intelligent bot.

How Do People Discover Bots in Facebook Messenger?

Users can search for firms and bots by name within Facebook Messenger; thus, you'll most likely attract some users. However, like with any new entry point into your organization, you're likely to find that adopting this communication channel within your customer base will require some advertising. Facebook is also attempting to make this easier for businesses and groups.

Here are a few tools and changes they've made to help with that connection:

Messenger Connections

If you've built a Facebook Page for your business, Messenger Links will build a short link (m.me/username) using your Page's username. When someone clicks that link, regardless of where they are, it will launch a Messenger discussion with your company.

Customer Representation

You can find consumers on Facebook Messenger using customer matching if you have their phone numbers and pre-existing permission to contact them. Conversations started by customer matching will involve a final opt-in on the initial Facebook Messenger communication.

Codes for Messenger

Messenger codes are one-of-a-kind pictures that act as a visual signature for your company and bot on Messenger. If you're acquainted with Snapchat codes, these visual clues work similarly, routing anyone who scans them with Messenger to the associated company page or bot.

Buttons for Messenger

You may embed these Facebook-provided buttons into your website, allowing anyone who clicks them to initiate a Messenger discussion with your firm.

If you haven't created a bot for any of the above, the result will be a conventional Messenger-based discussion. As a result, you'll want to be sure that you're keeping an eye on that channel.

5 Branded Facebook Messenger Bot Examples

Written definitions of bots are one thing, but seeing a bot in action can help you grasp how it works. Take a peek at some early examples:

Facebook Messenger Bot

Flowers by 1-800-Flowers

In his keynote, Mark Zuckerberg praised the ability to send flowers from 1-800-Flowers without dialling the 1-800 number. Danny Sullivan, a user, then tested it by sending flowers to Zuckerberg personally, documenting the five-minute process here.

The bot walked Sullivan through a few floral alternatives before confirming delivery information.

Wall Street Journal

Users can access live stock quotes from the Wall Street Journal bot by typing "$" followed by the ticker symbol. They can also have the top headlines given to them directly within Messenger.

HP

HP developed a Messenger bot that allows users to print photos, documents, and files from Facebook or Messenger to any HP printer connected.

Facebook M

Facebook is releasing its Messenger bot, dubbed "M," a personal assistant bot. M can handle a wide range of demands, including restaurant recommendations, difficult trivia, and last-minute accommodation rates in the city. M's adaptability stems from the fact that it is a bot-human hybrid.

Healthtap

Healthtap is an interactive healthcare service that links people to medical specialists for assistance. Following the unveiling of the platform, Healthtap developed a bot that allows users to submit a medical query into Facebook Messenger, receive a free response from a doctor, and explore articles with similar questions.

This configuration also assists the organization in filtering inbound inquiries by first answering some patient questions with existing responses and then surfacing unique queries for live responses.

Should You Create a Business Facebook Messenger Bot?

That's the kind of question I can't answer for you. Like any marketing or product venture, building a bot for Facebook Messenger would require resources – primarily employee time and experience – and may not yield the desired results.

That being said, here's my best advice for determining whether a Facebook Messenger Bot might assist your business:

Do you have a specific use case in mind for your bot?

One of the primary reasons so many firms failed to develop mobile apps for their enterprises was that they perceived it as another version of their website. They failed to consider how being on a mobile device would alter the types of interactions their clients would want to have with their company.

Some tasks are unsuitable for mobile. As a result, many apps go unutilized. When considering a Facebook Messenger use case, consider it from the perspective of the customer or user, not from the corporation's perspective.

How to Block Facebook Bots?

There are several methods for preventing bots from spamming. On Facebook, you can unsubscribe from the bot or block bots. If you wish to reduce the number of regular messages that the bot delivers but still keep in touch with it, you can unsubscribe. To unsubscribe, send a message to the bot with STOP or UNSUBSCRIBE. You will receive a notification informing you that the updates will be halted.

If you want to prevent bots from sending you messages permanently, you might try blocking them. Go to the discussion screen on Facebook to disable the bots. To discover your conversation, go to the Recent tab. There are two options there: Block all messages and Block sponsored messages.

How to Block Facebook Bots

All Messages Should Be Blocked

The option to block all messages assists you in terminating all contacts with the bot. The bot will be unable to send you any messages (including sponsored messages), and you will be unable to send any messages to the bot.

Disallow Sponsored Messages

Bots initiate interactions with you to advertise services or items that match your search terms. You can utilize the Block sponsored messages option to block all sponsored messages while keeping the bot unblocked. This allows you to ask your questions without being spammed. So that's how you ban bots on Facebook.