ChatBots – Making a Comeback with Conversational Banner Ads

By 2020, 85% of consumer interactions will be conversational in nature. But not with a human (Gartner).

This reality has several implications that could affect how advertisers develop communication strategies and leverage A.I. to drive “conversationally wired” experiences.

On Friday June 21st, 2019 IAB Canada’s A.I. Committee invited Lexi Kaplin, co-Founder & Chief Product Officer – conversationHealth, to talk about how they are using conversational A.I. to create better human experiences within the healthcare sector. Following are some highlights from that discussion:


What are Conversational Banner Ads?

Conversational banner ads offer users a two-way communication experience that is underpinned by advanced A.I.-driven customer service.

A.I.-backed creative units are hitting the scene as a new generation of ads that combat the traditional standard creative executions. By leveraging Chatbot technology, Conversational Ads offers a new form of “pull media” to the consumer providing contextually relevant information on-demand.

We’re seeing early adoption in Financial Services as well as customer service-related sectors and research in this area is indicating that online conversations are rapidly becoming a consumer expectation:

  • 63% of consumers believe that a business should be available via conversational touchpoints (Ubisend)
  • 84% of messages sent through conversational interfaces are read by its user (BabyCentre)

Fundamentally, humans crave conversation as opposed to generic responses. Leveraging new technology to address this insight can prove to be a powerful way to evolve and enhance the consumer experience. Using technology to help provide users information that they are, or might be, looking for starts to elevate this experience.

Conversational banner ads hold a repository of questions, and when integrating A.I. (via chat bots), can be trained on how to best respond in the most effective way for the consumer and for your brand – be it in a push message or written responses.

They are also optimal for direct interactional types of experiences that allow you to ask what the user needs, to then offer up a redirect opportunity (i.e.: would you like to learn more? Would you like to see if you are at risk, etc.)?


Getting Started with Conversational Banner Ads

  1. Find the optimal places for conversational banner ads – the capability of providing a conversational ad in the channels that your consumer is already engaging in, can be very beneficial to both the user, and the brand. Following are some start questions:
    1. What type of conversations and/or questions could the brand be more present for, to better serve the consumer?
    2. On which platforms are these conversations authentically happening?
    3. How can the consumer be supported in a more frictionless way?
  2. Develop a unique strategy that considers each possible interaction that could occur within the user experience
    1. Understand when to direct a conversation to a human experience over a more technical (chat bot) experience. For instance, consumers might want responses to happen slower rather than fast; or want the added sound of the chat bot typing their responses in a voice and text specific environment
  3. Work with an expert and test to learn.

Missed this one? Reach out to Councils & Committees and get involved.