It will come as no surprise that SAScon will be launching a new and exciting digital concept; a whole new digital interaction programme, which is an industry first! It's been developed by myclever Lab, a leading Manchester based development agency at the top of their game creating new and unique marketing opportunities through innovative digital technology. They've recruited amazing developers and created a forward thinking team to create the first UK event bot for the Facebook Messenger app, which is available for attendees at SAScon 2016 on Thursday 16th June and Friday 17th June. Read all about it here!
The world of digital is constantly evolving. Technology continues to modernise and be applied to existing platforms to optimise the way we interact and communicate on both a personal level and also for business. Facebook introduced the opening of bots for the Facebook Messenger app back in April this year, which gave companies the opportunity to interact with their audience through automated conversations. The programme is called Messenger Platform, and it optimises the customer service communication time, were customers can message companies through the app instead of calling them. Myclever lab has taken this new innovative opportunity and are immersed in it and will be launching it at this year's SAScon event for all delegates to use!
We caught up with the very busy Jim Meadows, Head of Product at myclever Lab, and asked him 5 quick questions about this new interactive programme.
Tell us about myclever Lab and your role at SAScon
myclever™ Lab is a Digital Product Lab. Our MO is simple; we don't do marketing (our sister company myclever Agency take care of that) we build products. We build products for ourselves, we build them for brands and we help start-ups do the same. For SAScon we've developed an interactive event programme that allows delegates to interact with it through conversation - all within the Facebook Messenger App.
Explain the idea behind the Facebook Messenger bot and the interactive programme
The idea came almost immediately. We'd anticipated that Facebook were about to open up their API for developers and we'd some ideas on how interactive "chat bots" could create better experiences, events being one of them. With beta developments you really need brave clients so we approached digital champion and SAScon founder Richard Gregory who got the idea right away and luckily for us - was completely up for it.
What are the key features that makes it an industry first? Why is it an industry first? So, Facebook's API has only been released for a matter of weeks, it's the first time developers have been able to build products that work within the Messenger platform and we've been one of the first to build a comprehensive bot of any kind - not just events. At this point there's only a handful of Messenger bots around but with 900million people actively using Messenger - bots are set to revolutionise the way people interact with brands within the platform.
How can this tool benefit the interaction at SAScon?
For SAScon the tool allows users to chat through the programme. SASbot (as we've christened it) can answer questions about speakers such as Robert Scoble, find out where to park, when the next breaks are etc. And of course find out about the events sponsors and details of the highly anticipated The Candidate's Social. We've even built in some Easter eggs so if for example, SASbot gets mistaken for Siri - users better watch out.
Do you think this form of interactive programme will be used for other social media features or events in the future?
Messenger bots are here to stay and they're not just for events. The biggest opportunities for brands are for the semi-automation of customer service, bespoke content delivery and people can even purchase through Messenger allowing amazing e-commerce experiences. The wildest idea? Why not build a recruitment bot that subscribed talent to suitable job listings ;) The list is endless.
Have you booked your ticket for SAScon? The Candidate is sponsoring the famous search, analytics and social event for the third time and we are very happy to announce a fantastic line-up of activities this year!
Are you a technology professional and looking for a new challenge? The Candidate has recently established an IT Recruitment department, so get in touch today on 0161 832 3150 to hear about our current roles or check out what we have listed on our website!