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Written by
Katy Ratican
2 Nov 2021
4 minutes

How to automate texts without sounding like a bot

While enabling auto-reply to phone calls and text messages, business owners and entrepreneurs should ensure that they sound human
Auto reply text messages

Automation is the best friend of small businesses and solo entrepreneurs. There are several key functions including customer interactions that small businesses should automate. But when setting up auto-reply messages, managers should ensure that it doesn’t sound like a bot.

Automated business messaging can save you time and effort. If you’re looking at how to auto-reply to phone calls and text messages, your objective should be to make your auto-message reply sound and feel as human as possible. If it sounds robotic, customers will feel disengaged.

How to automate business messages without sounding like a bot

Use a real photograph

People would rather talk to other people about their problems. You should use a high-quality image of a person, ideally an employee of your firm. Using this will make your customers feel like they’re talking to a real human.

Businesses that use icons or illustrated characters will make the users feel distanced. Even before the conversation starts, the users might expect it to be robotic. That preconceived notion will stop them from fully engaging or explaining the issue.

Customise messages

Personalise the language you use as opposed to being functional and transactional. Talk the way people normally talk. Start by using the customer’s name if possible and not with a “Click here if it’s order-related” kind of statement.

Make sure it’s conversational and empathetic. For example, saying “I understand it must be painful” or “We’re really sorry for the trouble” would make it sound human. Ensure that the syntax is easy to understand and that sentences are not long or filled with complex words. Use emojis if relevant and will not lessen your message of help or advice.

Make the message interactive

Far too often, when a business uses an auto-reply message, it tends to be like software commands and not conversations. Interactive responses are what make conversations meaningful. That’s what also makes the interaction feel more human.

For example, if you’re a dentist that wants to confirm a patient’s appointment, instead of saying “Your appointment is confirmed for tomorrow at 11 am. To confirm, click Y” say something like “Hi, this is Mel from [company name]. We have your appointment for tomorrow at 11 am. Is that ok with you?”

Allow users to respond with full messages

It’s not just your messages that need to be conversational. Like Chalkboard’s second-line auto-reply feature, your software also should have the flexibility for users to respond with full messages. If a user has to click either “Y,” “N,” or a digit, it will feel robotic.

Your auto message reply software should be able to recognise the meaning of responses like “Sure, I can do it” or “That sounds fine.” Then it should respond with something like “That’s great, see you soon.” With this, the user would feel that they’re talking to a real human.

Send messages during business hours

Messages that come during more typical office hours (9-5) would feel like they’re coming from real employees. But due to its convenience, several businesses use auto message replies even during after-hours. When a customer receives such a message, they would instinctively know that it’s from a bot.

To make it feel credible, you should try to use automated business messaging only during office hours. If you need to engage with someone beyond that, you should customise your message to reflect that. For example, you could say something like “Thank you for reaching [company name]. We’re currently out of the office and will get back to you during business hours.”

Use two-way communication on automated messages

With the right software, you’ll be able to respond to your frequently asked questions with auto-message replies. But if the complaint is complex and would require human assistance, the software should be able to connect the user to an employee.

The important thing here is that the process should be automatic. The user shouldn’t have to repeatedly request assistance only for the bot to ask the same questions over and over.

In short

Automated business messaging can elevate your customer interactions. With the right auto message reply feature, you’ll be improving customer satisfaction and increasing customer loyalty.

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