Chatbots and voice assistants are conversational interfaces for better interactions between humans and computers. In order to make this relationship more personalized conversations need to be more life-like, intimate, and representative of human interaction. Hence, building a rich and detailed personality becomes not only pivotal but a must to make them more believable, relatable, and relevant to users.
For a business looking forwards to build a chatbot, one of its most important features to keep in mind is its personality. The personality of a chatbot represents the company on a personal level. Additionally, the personality of a chatbot is present in every stage of the conversation, including:
- The greeting
- Explanation of services
- Asking and answering questions
- Providing information and services
This makes it important for businesses to invest in personality that informs every touch point of a chatbot. Its personality traits not only creates a deeper understanding of the bot’s end goal but also of how it will communicate through language, tone, mood, and style. Some people make the mistake of seeing a bot as a lifeless piece of technology. However, the projection of human traits makes it more approachable into everything. If a bot doesn’t have an explicitly designed personality a user will still assign it one.
Oren Jacob (Google I/O ’17) once said that if people don’t spend the time crafting that character and motivation of a chatbot carefully. They may run the risk of people themselves projecting personality traits, motivations, and other qualities that you may not want associated with.
If brands are looking forwards to engage through bots and ultimately see conversions they need to have conversational that are personal. For companies, to engage and retain customer they need bots to have a quality conversation. Interfaces require users to have an emotional connection to them rather than annoy customers with a robotic experience. Chatbot’s personality is an opportunity for businesses to meet a customer’s needs in a way that satisfies and encourages online reviews.
According to a Statista report in 2018, nearly half of all people surveyed complained that chatbots prevent them from reaching a live person. Additionally, 47% of them claim that responses of a chatbot aren’t helpful. There are many aspects of a bot’s communication style. These characteristics can make or break your audience’s experience, making it crucial to keep these statistics in mind.
Businesses try to project their bots as humans instead of trying to pass off bots as real people, let customers know that they’re speaking to a machine. Such transparency from the company’s side from the initial conversation will help eliminate consumer mistrust. This can make the more open to the idea of chatting with a bot. So let’s see 7 quick tips for designing a chatbot personality:
Persona Of Your Target User
Before designing a chatbot’s personality, businesses must keep in mind the age group, demographic, and other key personality traits of the end-user. For example, if a brand’s majority of customers are between the ages of 25 – 40 years, a chatbot with an adolescent-like persona won’t be the best fit.
Hence, the first and foremost step in designing the personality of a bot is understanding the personality of the audience and other personal traits such as slang language, habits, interests, and others. These characteristics of the customers can help in tailoring the personality of the chatbot to the customer base.
Purpose Of The Chatbot
Design a chatbot’s personality concerning its purpose is very important. This is important because if a chatbot is built to conduct serious conversations such as helping customers with time-sensitive actions, it should be efficient and straightforward with responses. Clever and witty responses in such cases are the last thing it should be doing.
Brands have their personalities and often use specific Tone-of-Voice to successfully communicate their message. They maintaining a consistent tone of voice across platforms for effective communication such as marketing brochures, websites, social media, and others. Such consistency helps them establish personality in the eyes of consumers.
Brand need to think about developing the personality of a chatbot similarly. The tone-of-voice is important to factor as users tend to perceive the brand through the chatbot. Chatbots have become a crucial element of communication in businesses. Brands maintaining consistency across all other platforms should also use the brand tone of voice for the chatbot to inculcate user trust.
Design Personality At Country Level
Typically businesses prefer rolling out chatbots in multiple countries and languages. This strategy focuses on building the personality of a chatbot at a global level. This is both incorrect and risky for a chatbot roll out because cultures differ with regions.
This means a conversation that is polite in one country is not deemed the same way in another. For example, the word crazy is funny in the UK but offensive in the U.S.A. These attributes of languages make it crucial for conversational architects to build personality at the country level and not on a global level.
If a chatbot has a single conversational architect for multiple languages that chatbot wouldn’t be enough. In such cases even having an exceptional cross-cultural understanding won’t help. Businesses can rather invest in a cross-cultural team of conversational designers as it can help to bring in the flair of language in conversations which might be very locale-specific at times.
Opening a Conversation
In a conversation with the customers, the first message, or the greeting exchanges with the bot is a crucial element of conveying its personality. There are several different ways of opening a conversation such as Hello, Hi, Yo, Greetings, and so many others. All these are micro elements dictating and reflecting different personas of a bot.
Ideally, a bot should introduce itself along with the different services it offers. It can prove to be more convenient instead of greeting with open-ended questions such as “How can I help you”. Send specific messages to help them be precise during interaction with a human.
Handling Unexpected Questions
The bot should be able to answers any random question from humans. This includes even those cases when the question is rudimentary and has nothing to do with the offerings it must still be able to offer a reply. Such characteristics can help bot form an emotional connection with a human. Furthermore, having multiple none-intent responses can also drastically add to the conversation. For example, if a bot sends a standard “Sorry” or “I didn’t get that” as response every time a user asks an unknown question it will lead to bad CUX.
Humor plays a very crucial role in conversation as humans tend to perceive it positively. It also makes such conversations similar to everyday social interactions and helps engage the user. This is especially important in interactions or processes that are long and arduous.
Through humor, a chatbot can help the user get more involved in communication. This attribute of bots will also lead humans to perceive them as an emotionally intelligent entity. Machine learning and NLP can help enterprise train their chatbots to assess the user’s mood by recognizing humor expressions and respond appropriately.
This blog highlight the importance of a chatbot’s personality and how businesses can design it. Designing a personality for your chatbot seems like a lot of work. However, a great personality can enhance the user experience for your customers in the long run. This can ultimately promote user adoption and sales.