Our Story: Why I Switched from Email Marketing to Conversational Marketing Chatbots and 3 Reasons You Should Too!
Arvell Craig
CEO & Founder of Chatbot Funnels
April 1, 2019
I was late to email marketing.

But when I figured it out I was bullish and successful.

Compared to all other forms of marketing, email marketing boasts a 40x ROI with direct results

I studied the best of the best in email writing; namely Ryan Deiss, Ben Settle, and Andre Chaperone. 

But then I got into the B2B world with large purchased databases. 

Those lovely ideas of story-driven, infotainment email flew out the window because large email blasts in 2017-2018 don't hit email inboxes.

The solution was a concept called "cold email prospecting."

Cold email sneaks pass the spam filters like a trojan horse and persuades prospects to wave their white flag of surrender. 
Cold email sneaks pass the spam filters like a trojan horse and persuades prospects to wave their white flag of surrender. 
Then, in 2017, I started hearing about chatbots and conversational marketing

Was this the next shiny object?

Was this just a distraction? 

Luckily, after 15 years in this business, I've learned not to be skeptical. ( Skeptics ignored Twitter in 2007 and Instagram 2011, etc. Yeah, I learned the hard way the regret of passiveness and timidity. )

I told myself I would not make that mistake again. 

Sure there's opportunity cost and risk, but the upside greatly outweighs the failures when it works. 

So after a bit of due diligence and learned that in 2015 Messaging Apps Surpassed Social Apps usage. 

This proved to me that consumer behavior had changed. 

And it was only a matter of time before businesses began using messaging to communicate at scale.
So after a bit of due diligence and learned that in 2015 Messaging Apps Surpassed Social Apps usage. 

This proved to me that consumer behavior had changed.
As a marketing consultant, I only keep clients if can get them results.

And the better the results, with predictability and positive ROI (return on investment) are all critical to my business. 

So in January 2018, I decided to switch my focus from email marketing to chatbots.

Yes, I still do cold and warm email, but the ROI / benefits of chatbots for most companies is even better than email. 

- Chatbots turn website traffic into leads
- Chatbots filter contact form spam and fraud
- Chatbots proactively offer visitors 24/7 engagement
- Chatbots speed up the buying process by booking meetings with qualified leads
- Chatbots in Facebook Messenger nurture leads and get 80%+ open rates
- Chatbots in Facebook automatically convert comments into leads
3 Reasons to Invest in Chatbots and Conversational Marketing
1. Businesses that quickly follow consumer behavior often win
Sometimes a business will try to lead user adoption of technology. But this is often a gamble.

For example, VR (virtual reality) and AR (augmented reality) are up and coming technologies however mass user adoption hasn’t happened yet.

In 2019, there's no “Oasis” where people can escape to daily.  So for a business to invest into VR right now is premature.

But conversational marketing in business is following an established pattern of consumer communication.

Now if a business transitions to focus on chatbots conversational marketing, it’s a no brainer that many consumers and prospects will welcome it.
2. Chatbots and conversational marketing saves everybody time. And time is the most important asset
When I first switched from email marketing to Messenger marketing, I boasted about 50–80% open rates.

Then when I switched from traditional landing pages and ClickFunnels to Drift Chatbots, I bragged about the engagement and leads converted.

But now after two and a half years, six different platforms and learning conversational marketing…

The biggest benefit is speed.

Not just the speed of automation.

Conversations bring users speed of answers, solutions, resources, live agents and meetings.

No more waiting for email replies and automation sequences.

Companies spend less time following up on form fills and unqualified contacts because a properly built bot will filter out the junk.

So I no longer boast about conversion or click-thru rates which the average person will view with skepticism and cynicism.

I know you’ve been burnt before so let’s just look at the time savings.

In addition to focusing on less hyperbolic data, the time focus normally narrows out the wrong type of customer.

People who are needy jump on the bandwagon of crazy open rates, while people who are busy jump on the time-saving benefits.

This difference is clientele is night and day too!
3. One little prediction: Email and Messaging will merge (UPDATED: This is already happening)
I believe in the near future, all platforms of communication will merge or become omnichannel.

In that email and SMS and messaging or bots will all work together.

When my favorite email service provider told me they were opening beta access to a live chatbot, I knew it was only a matter of time.

They already had SMS.

They already had email and a type of Messaging.

Even my favorite conversational marketing platform Drift comes with email marketing, sales email, live chat, and bots…

It’s only a matter of time for all these channels to work as one.

When this happens, what will be the default context of messaging?

I believe the short and personal message format will be the core skill when this happens.

When you have real-time direct access to people, you’ll need to keep everything short and sweet.

And when you can automate these short interactions to hundreds of people at once… the most powerful skill will be having experience in conversational marketing.

Not long, formal email writing.
Conclusion
It’s always a smart idea to communicate with users on their terms and in their marketing channels.
When only 5-10% of people read your emails you must rethink what you're doing. 

Maybe you need to write better?

Or maybe you need to find another channel to reach people. 

I've decided that chatbots and conversational marketing are where I'm headed. I'm merging and blending email marketing with conversational marketing to provide everyone a better experience.

Hope to see you join in taking advantages of this new marketing channel.

Create a Great Day!

Arvell Craig

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