When sporting brands turn to technology for enhanced fan engagement, chatbots are a first choice for many. After all, a chatbot offers a variety of perceived benefits to sports businesses, such as faster responses to inquiries and better fan engagement. These are the promises upon which the use of chatbots is built. Additionally, sports businesses rely on chatbots to help connect the average fan, with Fortress GB noting during the SEAT Conference in Atlanta “an engaged fan on social spends 6 times more than the average fan.”
The overarching goal is to help stadiums and sports teams bring technology to bear that offers a closer connection for the audience, both in terms of the action on the field and fan engagement with the club. Chatbots can fulfill this need, and reduce the sense of distance between fans and sports businesses when properly used with social media and seamlessly blended into the fan engagement process.
Where and Why Chatbots Fail: A Failed Use Case
Despite the promise offered to increase operational efficiency, enhance the fan’s game day experience, and foster better fan engagement, there are still examples of chatbots failing to deliver. Where and why does this continue to happen? Well, Forrester cites a perfect example of chatbots intended to achieve the above-mentioned goals. Singapore’s POSB debuted a chatbot designed to handle general queries on their products and services. While it garnered press coverage, the chatbot failed to deliver in its intended manner.
The inability of the chatbot to fully answer queries had the opposite effect, reducing engagement among fans and failing to convert potential leads into paying customers. Forrester noted a bigger problem though facing many chatbots already in use were simply launched too soon. Among the common failures were making simple mistakes when answering inquiries, an inability to solve problems, or overcomplicating simple queries from users that a simple Google search otherwise easily handled.
In the end, many chatbots fail because “their defined purpose is too wide or unclear altogether.” Rather than rolling out chatbots designed to serve everyone, but not efficiently meet the needs of everyone using them, sports businesses need chatbots designed to solve specific problems.
When Chatbots Succeed: The Fradi-Vasas Cup Final Use Case
The Fanbot.ai developed for use by TheConnectedFan debuted during the Fradi-Vasas Cup Final between two of Hungary’s top soccer teams. Powered by Fanbot.ai on Facebook Messenger, this chatbot was used with a simple, defined purpose in mind: provide updates to fans and bring people closer to the action.
Fanbot.ai was able to generate impressive levels of fan engagement during the cup final. Data from the use of this chatbot showed how male and female fans used the bot to interact during the match, with males sending 51,602 messages and females sending 13,482 messages. The average interaction per fan was 17 for males, 20 for females, and the subscriber rate was 36% for males and 37% for females.
When used with a simple and defined purpose, chatbots have the power to increase fan engagement and generate leads for any sports business.
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If you are interested in learning more about TheConnectedFan Chatbot go to FanBot.ai