Data Protection and Marketing Options for Facebook Chatbots (part 3)

In the first two parts of this blog series, we have already clarified what a chatbot is, on which platforms chatbots are used, what possible uses there are and what you have to consider when creating a chatbot. This article is now about what to consider when using chatbots under data protection law and what options there are to advertise chatbots.

If you missed the first two posts, you can find them here:

Part 1: What is a chatbot and what can you do with it?

Part 2: How to Create a Facebook Chatbot in 6 Steps

Chatbot and GDPR checklist

If the chatbot has been given an identity and all dialogs have been created, as described in the last part, it is important to design the chatbot in compliance with data protection regulations. In order to be able to operate a chatbot in compliance with data protection law, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) must be complied with. An essential part of this is to grant the user rights in handling his data. It is important that the user knows which data is being recorded. There are a number of points to consider here:

  1. The chatbot operator needs the consent of the user for data processing via the opt-in procedure. For this purpose, the providers of chatbot software solutions offer ready-made modules that can be transferred to the chatbot. You also have the opportunity to design your own individual solutions.
  2. The privacy policy of the website operator must be adapted to the chatbot and must be accessible. This can be implemented, for example, via a data protection link in the menu area of ​​the chatbot. In the data protection declaration, the user should be transparently informed about all data protection guidelines.
  3. The user must agree to the data protection declaration and the setting of cookies.
  4. The operator of a chatbot is obliged to conclude an order processing contract with external service providers in accordance with the GDPR. Often the external service providers provide such a contract in advance.
  5. In terms of IT security, the GDPR obliges the operator of chatbots to take organizational and technical data protection measures. It must be ensured where the data is stored and how the communication content and customer data are encrypted, stored and transmitted.
  6. The user must be given the option of the following rights:
    • Inspection of his data : Every user has the right to inspect the data that the operator of the chatbot has stored about him.
    • Correction of his data : In addition, every user has the right to change or adapt the data stored by the operator of the chatbot.
    • Deletion of his data : Every user has the right to delete the data that the chatbot operator has stored about him.
    • Forgetting their data : According to the GDPR, every user also has the “right to be forgotten”. If a user insists, all user data must be removed from the database.

This article does not constitute legal advice. This is only intended to provide an insight into the handling of the GDPR in connection with chatbots. We do not assume any liability for the completeness and correctness of the information. Before publishing a new chatbot, please check all data protection guidelines and laws in cooperation with a lawyer or data protection officer.

Chatbot Marketing on Facebook and Co.

Once the chatbot has been completed and all data protection guidelines are adhered to, the bot can be launched. In order to reach the desired target group and to draw attention to the bot, there are various ways to get the user to interact with the bot:  

1. Reach the target group directly on Facebook

Facebook offers advertisers the option of placing so-called click-to-messenger ads. These ads are played on Facebook, Instagram or in Messenger and lead the user directly to the advertiser’s chatbot. This enables the advertiser to reach target groups in the Facebook advertising network in a focused manner. The advantages of this approach are the very detailed targeting options of the Facebook ad manager and the measurement of success through the targeted placement of a Facebook pixel in the area of ​​the messenger bot.

However, it is not only possible to direct users to the chatbot via paid advertisements. Users can also be directed to Facebook Messenger using links from the news feed. The goal is to place a link in a generic newsfeed post for the target audience. After clicking the link, the user does not get to the landing page as usual, but directly to the chatbot. This works free of charge as a post for your own fan page, but also in groups or privately shared posts. In order to avoid irritation when forwarding to the chatbot, attention should already be drawn in the Facebook post that a forwarding to the messengerbot will be carried out.

2. Automated replies to comments

In addition to the paid and unpaid ads and posts, there is the option of using the comment function in your own posts on the Facebook fan page to switch automated responses with links to the messenger bot. This makes it possible, for example, to route support inquiries directly from the posting to the messenger and process them there with the help of the bot. The site can respond with a personal message either to all comments or to comments with special keywords, such as “shipping time” or “return”. If you get your target group to do this with whole sentences instead of just reacting with individual words, the Facebook algorithm will reward you with additional reach.

3. Contacting the customer again

Sponsored messages give advertisers the opportunity to retarget customers who have already been in contact with the company. Sponsored messages from advertisers can contain specially tailored promotions or reminders of a product already in the shopping cart.

These user groups or remarketing lists can be very valuable due to stored details, as they can be used to target customers in the lower area of ​​the sales funnel and thus achieve conversions at low costs.

4. Facebook Messenger links from anywhere on the net

Every Facebook account and every Facebook page has an individual messenger link. This link opens a direct conversation with the associated account and thus the chatbot. The link is composed as follows: m.me/-p-PageName. This function can be used to reach potential customers outside of the Facebook network. For example, this link can be used on websites, other social media profiles and in newsletters or email signatures. It is possible to attach further parameters to this link using the Messenger app. In this way, additional content can be used, such as making exclusive campaigns accessible to selected users or linking tracking parameters with the link.

5. Plugin integration on the website and in other messenger apps

In order to be able to use the chatbot not only in the Facebook network itself, but also on your own website and on other platforms such as WhatsApp or Twitter, it is possible to integrate the chatbot via plug-in integration. These plugins can be placed dynamically on your own website as a pop-up, in blog posts or as slide-ins at any point on the website. With these plug-ins it is possible to display a complete Facebook Messenger bot on your own website without the user having to leave the page. As a result, a chatbot that has already been created can be used on different platforms without significant additional effort. It should be noted that the data protection guidelines in Europe an USA are mandatory for the technical implementation, because when using plugins on other platforms, the user data is transferred directly to Facebook. There it is important to ensure that these services can only be activated if the user has clearly consented to the storage and processing of his data via opt-in and has been informed about a data protection notice.

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