The half-baked chatbot platform from Facebook has turned sour beyond doubt to many people based on the potential of its conversational user interfaces.
The first bots that were built back in April by third-party developers were very clumsy and gave more trouble than just using a normal website. So, Facebook’s Creative Shop is stepping in to work with Msg.ai, the bot maker and with the popular fashion brand Tommy Hilfiger to make a forerunner chatbot that is worthy of effective assistance.
The new TMY.GRL A.I. Messenger Bot will be designed to promote today’s debut of Tommy’s capsule fashion line for the social media star and supermodel, Gigi Hadid. People can now learn and know more about it by just tapping the message button on the Facebook page of Tommy Hilfiger or his posts, that open a short link URL or by scanning its Messenger QR code.
By using this chatbot, the fashionistas can now select pre-made queries or can also type questions to learn about Gigi, see all the behind-the-scenes content its runway show event. Most important of all, the users can now shop for stuff from the nautical-themed clothing line.
Facebook still does not have a built-in checkout and payment flow feature yet in its Messenger bot. The shoppers will be linked to the official website of Tommy Hilfiger fashion brand to punch in their card details and confirm the purchase, irrespective of whether they purchase a dress shirt, trousers or casuals. While this might give the brand a deep-seated control over the shopping experience, it is also likely to reduce the conversion rate. This could be probably because leaving the Messenger can distract the users or they can also reconsider making purchases. Hopefully, Facebook will fix that soon.
When asked if diving into the unproven bot world made sense for the company, Tommy Hilfiger himself explained that the main aim of this venture is to go directly to the consumer. He said that since they are always concentrating on their own stores and department stores, the motive of using Facebook Messenger’s chatbot is to go directly to the consumer. He also said that the future lies in the omni-channel process.
The executives from the artificial intelligence platform, Msg.ai, explained that the companies for consumer goods are attracted to bots not just for sales but also because of the relationship aspect. The customers will keep coming back if a memorable and interactive experience is created with the brand, instead of one-way marketing. This is the reason why the marketing experts from Facebook’s Creative Shop are out to help the advertisers and are getting their hands dirty on building this bot.
Why Did Tommy Hilfiger Plan on a Chatbot
So, what made the 31-year old company come up with the idea to have a chatbot? The main aim of the company is to stay a bit ahead of the curve and look for innovative ways to improve the shopping experience of the users.
Chasing new technologies has always been around the corner for Tommy Hilfiger. Their Snapchat and Instagram strategies have been successful. 25 years ago, after unsuccessful attempts at building touch-screen vending machines, the fashion brand had a credit-card system which worked well but the touch-screen was heating up. However, now he feels that by relying on Facebook, which is a dependable company, the fashion brand has less to worry about and can gain more as the users will now embrace new ways to shop.
The TMY GRL A.I. Messenger Bot is here to answer all the customer’s queries and offer an immersive and a responsive feel than what the shoppers usually experience online. The bot will capture some of the traits of talking to Gigi Hadid herself and at the same time it remains transparent that there is no human at the other end.
Fashion still looks like the most unlikely choice of candidature for the chatbot success. The shoppers can’t touch or wear and try the clothes, and the bot itself is not so aware of the customer’s style quotient so that it can make smart and relevant recommendations about which items will be appropriate for them. But Tommy Hilfiger believes that this new fashion brand-specific bot might perform better than any multi-brand shopping bots like the Spring, which was launched with the Messenger Bot platform. However, it was proven to be unconvincing and confusing.