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Episode 35 – The A to Z on Chatbots For Amazon Sellers and How They Can Help Your Amazon Business

On this Serious Sellers Podcast episode, learn about chatbots for Amazon Sellers and how to stay in the good graces of Amazon’s customer service.
Helium 10 The Helium 10 Software
33 minutes read

Are you a Private-label Amazon seller who wants to use Messenger to drive traffic to your products?  Already, chatbots for Amazon sellers are a significant partner in your quest for ranking, reviews and revenue. Now, we learn that by 2020, Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp will all use Messenger to communicate. That’s why we find Helium 10’s Director of Training and Customer Success, Bradley Sutton speaking with chatbot expert, Michelle Barnum Smith about artificial intelligence, her e-commerce wisdom and why Messenger might be an Amazon seller’s new best friend.

In episode 35 of the Serious Sellers podcast, Bradley and Michelle discuss:

  • 01:40 – What is a chatbot?
  • 01:15 – Messenger chatbots and Michelle’s insights for Amazon sellers
  • 03:12 – Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp — All on Messenger in 2020
  • 04:20 – Messenger offers 90% open rates and 3 second read times
  • 08:13 – Permission based marketing — A better Facebook experience
  • 09:15 – Top 3 ways to use chatbots — Rankings, review, and revenue
  • 12:30 – Using a chatbot to drive rankings
  • 17:15 – Running contests using your own products
  • 21:25 – Your Amazon buyers are Amazon customers
  • 23:00 – Chatbots, reviews, and custom audiences
  • 28:30 – Amazon reviews; make sure to err on the side of caution
  • 31:15 – Using chatbots with Facebook Pages and adjusting the experience
  • 34:00 – Here’s how to contact Michelle

Enjoy this episode? Be sure to check out our previous episodes for even more content to propel you to Amazon FBA Seller success! And don’t forget to “Like” our Facebook page and subscribe to the podcast on iTunes, Google Play or wherever you listen to our podcast.

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  • Freedom Ticket: Taught by Amazon thought leader Kevin King, get A-Z Amazon strategies and techniques for establishing and solidifying your business.
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  • Helium 10: 20+ software tools to boost your entire sales pipeline from product research to customer communication and Amazon refund automation. Make running a successful Amazon business easier with better data and insights. See what our customers have to say.
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Bradley Sutton: Ever wanted to know what this whole chatbot thing is about? Today, we’ve got a specialist who’s going to give us the A to Z on what chatbots are and how they can help your Amazon business.

Bradley Sutton: How’s it going, everybody? Welcome to another episode of The Serious Sellers Podcast. I’m your host, Bradley Sutton, and together with me today—I am joined by Michelle Barnum Smith. We just went over that. It’s not Michelle; it’s Mee-shell. All right.

Michelle Barnum Smith: Mee-shell. Yes.

Bradley Sutton: I’m going to struggle with this already. What is the origin—really quick —of why I have to do this little French accent with your name here?

Michelle Barnum Smith: Oh, my parents liked the Beatles song, Michelle, and so they made sure that, in my little farm town where I grew up in, everybody called me Michelle, and I was teased horrendously every time there was a new substitute teacher or a new school year. All my classmates had to make sure that everybody knew it was Mee—shell.  It’s not Meeeeeshell. It’s just Mee-Shell; it is not much at all.

Bradley Sutton: All right. I’m going to try to be mindful of that. Or I might just have to call you M during this just in case I get nervous.

Michelle Barnum Smith: Looks like The Bond—you know like the bondwoman, right?

Bradley Sutton: Okay. So, you’re a Bond woman now?

Michelle Barnum Smith: No, no, no. I’m just thinking like “M” from—

Bradley Sutton: Oh, that’s right. M. That’s right. Hey, but James Bond 25 is coming out this year or next year. That’s crazy. I can’t believe there’s that many. But anyways, we’re going completely off topic here. Let’s get back on. All right. The topic actually is chatbots. Me, I’m very familiar with them. I mean I haven’t used them that much, but I know what they are. But I know a lot of our users out there or listeners out there might be like, “What is a chatbot?” So, let’s start off with that. Michelle, what is a chatbot?

Michelle Barnum Smith: So, a chatbot, in essence, is automated communication. Okay, so you do something and then a bot automates a response back to you, and that bot could be, you know, there’s lots of different platforms for bots, like Slack. AI is probably the biggest industry term for it. Today, you and I are going to be talking about the most specific biggest opportunity for Amazon sellers, which is Messenger chatbots, which is the largest B to C platform for chatbot communications between businesses and customers and for Amazon sellers to take advantage.

Bradley Sutton: What are some stats as far as how many people in the United States are—I mean, I don’t know if you have this information up—actually using Messenger? A lot of us are just taking this for granted. Ever since I’ve had Facebook, I’ve always had Messenger and then they kind of made it that separate app and I was like, “Okay, well, you know, I can’t be without this. I need it.” But, are there any stats out there like, “Oh, 10 million people use Messenger, 100 million people.” What is it?

Michelle Barnum Smith: Yeah, sure. So, I can’t tell you on the fly specific to the United States, but in the last year, 1.5 billion users are on Facebook Messenger. And then three weeks ago—this is the big news—Facebook announced that the communication platform for Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp is going to be Messenger. And what that translates into is 2.5 billion users worldwide. So if people are like, “Oh, well should I even start the journey on chatbots because really I want to communicate with my people on WhatsApp or on Instagram.” Listen, this is the platform as of 2020; all three of the communication platforms are going to be combined.

Bradley Sutton: No way! I have no idea about that.

Michelle Barnum Smith: It will still have the Instagram user experience, but when it comes to the messaging feature, like in Instagram—

Bradley Sutton: So, it’s no longer going to be, “Can I slide into your DMs?” It’s going to be, “Can I slide into your Messenger?”

Michelle Barnum Smith: Yeah, I don’t know how they’re going to brand it, but it’s all going to be the same communication experience.

Bradley Sutton: Well that is pretty big. And now for what I understand, and this is just from personal experience too, and I’m sure our listeners can relate as well. My unread emails, you know, it probably says 3000 or 4,000 anytime. My phone’s text messages, you know, people don’t like to be hit with text messages, and we don’t have people’s numbers, but usually, if I get a message in my Messenger, I mean I open it. That’s me. That’s kind of typical for people, right? Most people who get inbox on Messenger, they’ll open it.

Michelle Barnum Smith: Yeah, absolutely. And that’s really kind of one of the sexy stats that I’d love to talk about with Messenger. The open rates are still upwards of 90%. And for that reason entirely, that people have email fatigue, and they all are super sick and tired of getting SMS texts from businesses. But Messenger is still in this kind of new awakening period where you’re still able to get really awesome engagement through the platform and getting those 90% open rates, those three seconds read times. A Harvard study was done last year comparing Messenger and email, and essentially, when it came to email, you either read that email within an hour or never. And so a lot of people are like you or they have their inboxes either just crammed full or they do the monthly or post-vacation purge where they just delete everything and then just say, “You know, if it’s really important, people will email me back.” You know, that kind of approach. Whereas with Messenger, it still enjoys that engagement, and those just super sexy open rates and three-second read times. I could just imagine just how powerful that is. If you’re doing a ranking campaign or a new product launch and you want people to take action very quickly, they’re going to that message and take action on it. You know, within three seconds. That’s just crazy. That’s crazy.

Bradley Sutton: Yeah. Okay. So just before we get into the specific thing, I definitely want to get into some specific use cases for people selling on Amazon for chatbots. But what are some more general things as far as rules—like you can’t just subscribe somebody to your list. You know, like, “I have a list of Facebook users now and I’m going to put them on my chatbot list.” What are the terms of service—I guess—is the word. How can you get somebody subscribed to your chatbot?

Michelle Barnum Smith: Yeah. Let’s talk about that real quick and then, we’ll talk about subscription processes. So, a couple of things to know about Facebook. Number one, Facebook wants to protect this platform from becoming your inbox on email, right? They don’t want it to be a spam platform. And they’re going to be very cautious and careful about how you as business owners use Messenger to promote your businesses, your products, et cetera. One of the things that you have to be very kind of aware of is how you would communicate via email or Instagram or Facebook posts where it’s like one offer after another, after another. That’s not going to work on Messenger. It can work short term, but in the long term, you can get your account essentially blocked and get your business banned off of Messenger. Another thing to know just like you mentioned, because I have sellers come to me all the time, and they’re like, “I have 200,000 fans on Facebook.” And I’m like, “Okay, that’s nice. But that doesn’t translate into Messenger subscribers.” Unless all 200,000 people have messaged you at some point, they are not technically subscribers to your Messenger account, which is a separate entity from your Facebook page. And so you have to go through a process too to get those people subscribed. The same kind of thing is true with an email list. I’ve worked with sellers who have a million and a half people on their email list. And then they’re like, “How do I get these people into Messenger?” If you move an email, if you just download your subscribers, you can upload them into another email service provider if you wanted to, just like when you want to go from MailChimp to AWeber or something like that. That is not the case with Messenger. You have to get people to purposely subscribe to your Messenger bot. And that has a lot to do with the overall experience that Facebook wants for the platform, which is permission-based marketing where nobody is going to communicate with you without your permission to do so. And so it is really important as you’re setting up your subscriber experience and bringing people on, and I know that can sound intimidating where people are like, “Oh my gosh, do I have to build out these big funnels and all these landing pages?” One of my favorite things about Messenger is the ease and frictionless process of getting subscribers on. You really can build a subscriber list very quickly and very frictionlessly, with Messenger.

Bradley Sutton: Okay, excellent. I think we’ve determined that at this point, Messenger is hot right now. It’s going to get even bigger in the future, thanks to that news you just brought us. So next year, it’s going to be even more. It’s effective. It’s an effective way of communicating. Most of our listeners are sellers or potential sellers on Amazon. In my mind, just in my mind as I’m talking to you, I can think of three ways I personally think would be the top three ways that Amazon sellers could use chatbots in order to scale their business. But let me ask it from an expert, and I’m hoping I can get at least two of these three—I’m not going to tell you what I was thinking of, but you tell me: What are the three top ways, in your opinion, that Amazon sellers can use this?

Michelle Barnum Smith: I’m glad you brought that up because, in my mind, there are three, and I call them the three Rs—ranking, reviews, and revenue. These are the three things that—in my work with sellers and I’ve worked with a lot of sellers—they really care about. Can I rank my products and that includes launching new products? Can I get reviews for my listings mostly within the terms of service, without getting in trouble? Can I drive revenue from my Messenger subscribers? To all three of those, I say “Yes. Yes. Yes.”

Bradley Sutton: Okay. The first two are the ones that I had in my mind. The last one could be, but I’m not sure exactly where you’re going with it. Let’s start with that one. The revenue part.

Michelle Barnum Smith: Now you’ve got to tell me what your three were!

Bradley Sutton: Okay. In my mind were the ranking, the reviews, and then building a brand, building a community. But I’m assuming maybe that partially has to do with the revenue. Let’s start with that one. Let’s go into some specifics about the revenue.

Michelle Barnum Smith: Let me just say, “You cannot accomplish any of the three that I talked about without building your brand.” You have to have the brand-building focus in mind because—let’s back up a second. One of the things that I get super frustrated with on behalf of my sellers, when I hear somebody has done one of my sellers wrong, right? I had a seller three weeks ago who Amazon just randomly shredded her products—just shredded her products. You know, how much money did she just lose? They’re not claiming any responsibility, all of this stuff. And there’s that just part of me that just full of rage on her behalf, right? And every day, I hear these stories of yet another crazy thing that Amazon has done. And that’s not to say obviously that there isn’t opportunity in the platform, but it is to say that as private label sellers or sellers on Amazon, it is a brutal place. It is a brutal place to try to survive. And the only way to survive is to be able to build your own traffic source, to essentially start to build your brand, and be a product seller, not just an Amazon product seller. What that translates into is obviously building your brand and creating traffic assets that you can utilize to accomplish your goals on Amazon and off Amazon. So that’s where we get into obviously ranking a review and then revenue really can be, “Do you want to sell direct? Do you want to sell through Amazon?” Now you have the power to do so because you have your own traffic source that interested in and aware of your brand, what you have to offer. And you can sell them what you want to and where you want to. And that’s true power.

Bradley Sutton: Okay. Going back to the first R then. That’s one of my specialties from before—ranking and giveaways and things I’m assuming chatbots can help with. So how would a seller utilize chatbots in relation to the ranking or, or like a product launch?

Michelle Barnum Smith: Yeah, absolutely, especially as it relates to product launches where you have no previous sales history. Bots are great for this because you can essentially run a multilayer product launch, all with chatbots. And what I mean by that is kind of like what I call it my five-step protocol to a product launch. The first step is essentially attracting your subscriber base. That’s really kind of like the pre-step—bringing in your subscribers via you contests and other things that attract people and then starting to run your offers. Those offers can look like a flash sale where you’re changing the list price on your actual Amazon listing for maybe like a couple of hours and driving a small percentage of your subscriber base to that offer. And that’s your week one product launch offer. And then, week two is a 10-day trip where you’re wanting to get 25 sales a day, per day for 10 days to be able to really lock in that ranking. It’s not just like a one-day peak and fall. It’s a sustained sales experience over a period of time, and you drip that offer out to your subscribers over that period of time. And then the rest of your subscribers, you do week three, which is a general offer. Something under 30% off where you can get those as verified reviews. And of course, during this time, you can use any URL that you want to drive traffic to. Obviously, I’m a huge proponent of Helium 10 gem tools where you can create your own URLs and kind of experiment with those, but obviously, you need to do your keyword research first so that you can build those URLs effectively and capture that ranking traffic. And then finally, if you need additional velocity after that, you can run Facebook Ads to deliver coupon codes via Facebook Messenger and get that ranking juice from external traffic as well.

Bradley Sutton: So then if we don’t have an existing Messenger audience or lists or whatever it’s called, and we wanted to use what you’re talking about as far as the ranking goes and delivering codes, then is the way it works is we actually have a target audience and then we actually run a Facebook ad to the audience, and then on ad click, it actually puts them into the chatbox sequence?

Michelle Barnum Smith: Yeah.

Bradley Sutton: Is that how that works?

Michelle Barnum Smith: Yep. My favorite sequence is a contest of some sort featuring a suite of your products or one of your products or a month’s supply of one of your products—that sort of thing and then run a Facebook ad. The highest performing audience that I’ve seen consistently as low cost per subscriber over and over again is just a lookalike audience of your current Amazon customers. You could do an order export of your Amazon customer List and just upload that into Facebook ads just with their first and last name and location. You don’t need their Amazon email address. That’s a waste of time anyway. But try to get a good lookalike audience from that. I’ve worked with over a hundred sellers and that has consistently been the best performing Facebook ad audience and it’s easy.  You don’t have to deal with any of the insight stuff. You don’t have to guess which other kinds of products or services or brands your ideal customer might like. It really just is that simple. And that’s what I love about it. And then running a contest featuring your products is really important, because what I’ve seen happen is sellers run contests where they’re giving away a cruise or they’re giving away a Fitbit or they’re giving away some product that has nothing to do with what they sell. And that might attract a good number of subscribers, but they’re total crap because when you try to message them later, they have no idea who you are. They have no idea how they got on this list. There’s no continuity of experience and they’re not interested in your products. And more often than not, they’ll either unsubscribe nicely or they’ll mark you as spam. And if you get too much of that, you’ll get your account blocked off of Messenger. I’m a huge fan of giveaway contests featuring your products. Another option is to just do a straight-up coupon offer as a Facebook ad campaign, and this is great for both attracting subscribers and ranking a product. You’re just running Facebook ads with a deep discount offer, and we’ve tested a lot of different offers and the one that hits the nail on the head each time is 75% off. 75% off is the sweet spot between getting people’s attention so that you can get a low-cost per subscriber. Plus it’s a good enough deal that people will actually claim the coupon and use it. What you don’t want to have happened is you’re offering like 25% off, for example, and it’s not a compelling-enough offer run via Facebook ads to make people kind of sit up and take notice. So that’s going to translate into a higher cost per subscriber. And then because the offer isn’t compelling, then nobody’s going to actually take you up on it. The actual coupon claim rate is super low as well. So it’s a lose-lose. You’ve paid a lot of money for that subscriber. And then that subscriber didn’t actually go into what it was you’re hoping they would do, but 75% off is that sweet spot between low cost per subscriber and people actually using the code so that you can then translate that into ranking juice if you will.

Bradley Sutton: Yeah. Hold on just a moment. I’m just trying to think out loud here before . . . My mind isn’t what it used to be.

Michelle Barnum Smith: And I talk really fast.

Bradley Sutton: So let me interrupt you before this amazing idea completely gets lost, which I’m already starting to lose. But anyways, okay. Let me think. What was I going to say? Oh yes. Okay. So you talked about 75% off and 25% off. But let me just throw something off with you here. What if you had, instead of a lookalike audience, you actually had a specific audience that you were able to get subscribed who were your customers. Like instead of doing the next step in creating a lookalike audience, let’s say you had 20,000 customers. Now, I would think that maybe if I’m targeting people from my brand who have already paid full price for my product organically. If I just gave a 25% off or a 40% off, less than 50 for a new item or the same item at this discount, wouldn’t I have a better chance of making that sale even with the lower discount just because they’re returning customers?

Michelle Barnum Smith: I totally know what you’re talking about and we have tested that and many times, and I got to say that “Actually, no.”

Bradley Sutton: Even to that kind of audience, your existing customers, you still suggest doing the 75% off?

Michelle Barnum Smith: Well, so everything’s always worth testing. What I would do in that instance is make it a completely separate campaign when you’re setting up your Facebook ads so that you can put all of those subscribers into a similar flow that the other people went through. But then always obviously follow up with them separately because they have purchased from you in the past, so maybe building a review funnel into that as well on the previous purchase. Here’s the thing though, and this is what I’ve seen many times and this goes back to a mentality that Amazon sellers have that people will remember what they purchased, and people don’t. There’s a couple of things that you have to mentally shift in when you’re thinking about your campaigns. First and foremost, your Amazon buyers are Amazon’s customers. Like I buy things all the time off Amazon and I have no idea the brand that I purchased from or half the time I can’t even remember the products that I’ve purchased from them. Do you know? You have to remember that because Amazon customers think of themselves as Amazon’s customers, not your customers. They’ve just bought your product. And they may or may not even remember that they bought it. So when they’re scrolling through their news feed and then all of a sudden they see a product that they purchased from you or they see your brand pop up and say, “Hey, thanks so much for being a valuable customer. Here’s 75% off your next purchase with us.” There’s going to be a little bit of a disconnect where people like, “Okay, now, who are you? What is this? What are you talking about? This seems too good to be too true. Is this a scam?” And what we’ve seen in those types of campaigns is the cost per subscriber on retargeting ads is super expensive compared to new subscriber campaigns. Now, as I said, I’m not telling people not to do it. I’m just saying what we’ve seen in running these kinds of tests. We’ll absolutely when we’re building audiences and setting up a giveaway contest if the retargeting list is large enough, we’ll include them in the audience to send the ads too. But time and time again, those retargeting ad set gets shut off first because they are so much more expensive.

Bradley Sutton: Okay. Interesting.

Michelle Barnum Smith: But by all means please test it and it’s a great use case. But you know, prove me wrong.

Bradley Sutton: Now you also mentioned about reviews. Now, of course as Amazon sellers, we got to be very careful with how we contact our customers and of course never offering incentivized reviews. But something I heard people say through Facebook ads a year ago before the whole chatbot thing was really big, and I would think the same might apply to chatbots, is let’s say you are able to make another custom audience of customers who not only bought your product but maybe are repeat buyers of your product and then target them with request to leave a review or something like that you would get a lot better chance of them leaving a review because obviously like your product. Now, have you ever used anything like that as far as on your Messenger campaigns or sequences?

Michelle Barnum Smith: Yeah, so let me speak to that a couple of ways. So first, to get people to subscribe, never put, on your ad, “Leave us a review and we’d love you forever or insert incentive here” kind of a thing. Never put that on your ad directly if you’re going to do it. Same way with product inserts where you see people say, “Hey, thanks so much. Leave us a five-star review on Amazon, and we’ll send you a $50 gift card.” It’s just blatantly against terms of service, and it’s only a matter of time before they get themselves in trouble. Right. in your ads themselves, you need to experiment with compelling offers. If they’re a repeat buyer and you have enough of them for a specific ASIN then, by all means, feature that product and present some sort of compelling offer, 50% off, their next purchase or a free bottle, a BOGO (buy one get one). Experiment with what that offer is. And then inside of the bot in the backend buried way after the initial kind of opt-in experience, give them that BOGO and a way for them to get that and claim that offer as quickly as possible. And then days later, follow up with review requests of some sort. And just really bury that. It’s not something in Amazon; You know, like somebody from Amazon sees you doing that, they’d be like, “Oh, well this is totally against the terms of service.” Right? But I will say, at the same time that the sellers that I’ve seen do this, at least what we consider successfully, where they’re paying a low cost per subscriber. And I will be honest with you, I haven’t talked to anybody yet who’s gotten a really low cost per subscriber from retargeting current customers. And every time I’ve tested it, it’s been like a $10 subscriber, a $40 subscriber or something crazy like that where it’s just like, “okay, yeah, you know, it’s a repeat buyer,” but are they really worth $40? And that’s even before they’ve gone to go. That’s even before we’ve even talked to them about going to leave a review, and there’s no guarantee that they’re going to leave a review. You’ve just paid $40 to know that somebody is an actual buyer. But I recommend on the flip side of that, are product inserts instead, because you know, for one thing, you know that 100% of your Amazon customers, your brand’s buyers, but Amazon’s customers are going to actually see or receive that product insert. And if you make the offer compelling enough, then you’re going to get people to convert and to become subscribers for free. So then obviously you will be able to follow with review funnels. It’s a nice net to put in place to constantly capture people. The other problem that I have with review funnels via Facebook ads is that you get into the territory of abnormal review velocity. Last September, I was at a fancy dinner with lots of fancy sellers and, um, one gentleman sat next to me and said, “hey, I’ve figured out this process and I’m getting all of these reviews except last week. I got my ASIN blocked from receiving reviews.” Oh. And I was like, “oh, that’s a bummer.” And he’s like, “oh yeah. And earlier this week I got my account suspended.” I was like, “dude! What happened?”

Bradley Sutton: Other than that, I’m doing great!

Michelle Barnum Smith: Yeah, exactly. And I’m telling all my other sellers how to do it too. And I’m like, “well, you’re a jerk. You’re going to get all your buddies blocked and banned too. That’s counterintuitive.” So, you know, something that I think is really important, especially with Amazon sellers, and I think I posted it on my Facebook today, but over the weekend the FTC is suing a seller on Amazon for fake reviews, essentially $12. 8 million. And Amazon is applauding it. They’re like, “yeah, go get him.” You know how Amazon doesn’t have your back. And you know, it’s one of those examples where you’re winning the battle to lose the war. “Great. You got a bunch of reviews and now your products ranked, but your ASIN got blocked.” “Oh, your account got suspended.” You know, so you have to be careful with these kinds of quick fly by night chatbot ideas because you just don’t want to get yourself in a position where you’re either going to get yourself blocked, suspended or sued by the federal government.

Bradley Sutton: So yeah, I mean, reviews are one, that’s why, you know, as I mentioned earlier is one thing, you don’t really want to mess with it. That’s the one that Amazon doesn’t like, whatever gives them bad press. And they’ve definitely gotten a lot of bad press about the manipulation of reviews. And there’s still a lot of manipulation out there, but guys just don’t, don’t, don’t take a chance. If there’s something shady about how you might be getting the review, whether it’s through chatbots or whether it’s through whatever other methods that you’re using. Better to err on the side of caution and just, just don’t do it. And then that’s one thing that’s really cool about the chatbots, here’s a potentially white hat way where you can increase the number of reviews you get without the danger of screwing yourself with Amazon.

Michelle Barnum Smith:  Right, exactly. And like I said, with product inserts and then just in general, following up with customers and reminding them to leave a review via your chatbots. And when I say customers, I mean your customers, they’ve gone from . . . Their journey is bringing them on as a subscriber, converting them into customers. and then following up with review requests that are like a normal campaign flow. “Hey, I know you’re busy, have a lot going on. I just want to do some customer service quick and check on you. Were you able to get that package? Yes or no? Did the product work like it was advertised? Is it working all right for you? Yes or no?” And if they say no, then you provide a really great customer service experience to make it easy for them to get their money back or have their problem fixed or whatever it might be (i.e., avoiding negative reviews). And then if they like it, just casually request that review and make it easy for them to do so. And when I say easy, I mean—something to watch out for is not sending people to a specific ASIN review URL. That’s abnormal review behavior all over the place. And a lot of sellers that I’ve talked to who have gotten their ASIN blocked from an abnormal review behavior is because they’re using ASIN reviewing. There is no customer out there who has access to this URL. It doesn’t mimic normal customer review behavior. And so that’s why it’s getting flagged. Either just give people instructions; go to, go to your orders, find the product. This is how you leave a review on Amazon. Or the other link that works right now is the review your product link. And that’s just kind of a general catch-all for all of the products that a consumer buys on their Amazon accounts. So those two things are working right now. Essentially not mimic and get caught for abnormal review behavior.

Bradley Sutton: Couple questions here, I’m assuming these chatbots are done through Facebook pages or it’s a page account. Like a business account, right?

Michelle Barnum Smith: Yeah. It has to be a page account.

Bradley Sutton: And then if you’re building a brand, you also might want to, I would think, toggle between maybe having a VA actually talk with a person as opposed to a chatbot. Is that something that’s, since I don’t have much experience with this, difficult to do where you have triggers where we need to get like a real-life person involved with this where it’s not all 100% Messenger activities all through chatbots, right?

Michelle Barnum Smith: It can be, it can be. I mean there are some things like frequently asked questions, where you could create a chat experience, an automated chatbot based on commonly used keywords like, “how do I return?” “I want to refund something” in the chatbot pop up where it’s like, “hey, it sounds like you’re looking to return the product. We’d be happy to help you with that. Let me go grab a customer service person right now who can guide you through that.” And that’s where you can insert a live agent. For example, my husband runs a bike shop and this is off Amazon experience example, but people are always posting on the Facebook page or doing various things. They want to know, “hey, what are your hours? What’s your location, what’s your phone number?” You know, those kinds of common things. But you don’t want somebody’s time wasted like, “what’s your phone number? Oh, Google it for heaven sakes.” Like those common requests, those kinds of things can be automated. But there are also places inside of flow inside of a Messenger automated experience where it makes sense to insert a live agent. And built into the platform of choice. My platform of choice is ManyChat, I’m not paid to say that they’re just really great and easy to use and very easy to set up and all the templates that I’ve built for my sellers are all on many ManyChat. It makes it really easy to install. But you know, if somebody replies to a bot, that automatically goes through the bot’s default reply experience. You can set that up in such a way that if people really want to talk to a real person, a live person that it makes it easy to identify who those people are. Because if you’re just trying to do all that through your Facebook inbox, it’s going to be a terrifying experience because the bot is going to take over your Facebook inbox and you’re going to see that every single response from the bot is going to look like a new message. So you definitely want to do that inside of ManyChat and it really simplifies the experience.

Bradley Sutton: All right. Well, Michelle, thank you so much for all this information. I have tons more questions, but we’re out of time, so I’m sure everybody else has questions too. So how can they find you on the Internet or on Facebook or how can they reach out to you to get some more help or even possibly training for Messenger bots services?

Michelle Barnum Smith: Yeah, absolutely. I have a new webinar that I do every week on my website,, and we’ll put that in the show notes. But I mean essentially, I talk through the ranking and review system on for Amazon sellers on how to use chatbots to accomplish those core objectives that I know you guys all have and I talk through and show you use cases and the flows themselves. You can see the step by step process that I use in the case studies and results that I’ve gotten by testing these. I know that this isn’t just a quick, “hey, this worked for one person.” No, this works over and over again.

Bradley Sutton: All right. Thank you very much. There you go guys, there you have it. There’s the website to get more information from Michelle, just make sure if you talk to her on the phone, don’t call her Michelle. It’s Mee-chelle. All right. And then she’ll help you out with your Messenger Bot services. Otherwise, she might give you a bad sequence or, I don’t know. Thanks a lot, Michelle. We’ll definitely be in contact in the future.

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