Deliver content for new interactive channels with your existing CMS.

The explosion of chatbot applications and machine learning provides a new approach to real-time, personalized customer experiences. Chatbots are the ultimate culmination of the universal content accessibility and personalization effort.

Businesses who fail to recognize the transformative value of bots will be scrambling to reach and retain customers, the same way late adopters of omnichannel marketing struggled to keep up with digital evolution.

Just last year, Adidas’ chatbot achieved a retention rate of 60 percent, far better than their app; Just Eat’s chatbot saw a conversion rate 266 percent higher than their average social ad; and CONVRG’s chatbot received a response rate 3 times that of their email survey. 

According to new research from Juniper, banking, healthcare, social, eCommerce and retail organizations saved $20 million this year, with a savings of $8 billion per year expected by 2022. Making content accessible and versatile is now more important than ever for content producers.

According to Gartner chatbots will power 85 percent of all customer service interactions by the year 2020.


Unfortunately, most marketers still see bot development as something outside of the traditional CMS or CEM platform. Rather than a publishing channel for an interactive content model, chatbots are still treated as silos. Authors don’t need more platforms and shouldn’t have to”‘cut and paste”’ content anymore. And yet, chatbots need content, so what are we to do?

Chatbots are Another Channel

The solution is simple: treat chatbots like another channel. By mapping and integrating external chatbot platforms to our CMS, our content continues to flow from subject-matter source to customer. Our content also becomes even more externally and internally discoverable in question and answer form and is more easily reused and updated across all channels.

Most importantly, our content remains ours—dynamic and under single-source control, rather than a victim of a content store and subject to quality, redundancy, and management issues.

To realize the cost savings and customer service benefits of chatbots, forward-thinking marketers can leverage dedicated chatbot frameworks to save time and money in development. Creating chatbots with these tools is so easy, however, that many brands have forgotten one critical component in the rush to market—intelligent content.

Doomed to Repeat the Past?

Before responsive design and adaptive content, publishers found themselves maintaining a host of templates for a single content rendering, wasting valuable time with every minor change. Content strategists knew there had to be a way to scale, and they found the answer in structured, intelligent content.

But with chatbots, brands are right back where they started, creating an entirely new entity, re-creating content, duplicating content, and separating it from their existing content system. Those who create bots separately from existing content ecosystems will find themselves creating new versions of content over and over again.

Invest in engineering content now before competitors’ robots steal customer mindshare.

Fortunately, single-sourcing chatbot content is possible with a little thought and ingenuity. The process of integrating chatbots with a CMS is very natural to those familiar with structured content and even more valuable to those who aren’t.

Bot Content Best Practices and Requirements

The first step to building a chatbot is to develop a true understanding of what its function will be. This will determine what kind of chatbot to build and how best to build it. 

Always starting with the content model, intelligent content principles are used in the outset of every content project—chatbot or otherwise. Start with the content structure. Model the structure. Only with a smart structure can we move content from the CMS to the chatbot.

At [A], we are especially interested in how structured content is changing the way users demand information. Analysts forecast that in the next 5 to 10 years, users will prefer receiving a tailored “answer” on demand instead of digging through information across multiple web pages.  

We’re preparing for that change by leveraging the chatbots’ automated and conversational interface and educating content strategists and stakeholders about content engineering, in the same way we aim to do so on our site with traditional articles now. Today we employ a simple information retrieval chatbot we built with API.AI and our native CMS.

Attend the Webinar

We also suggest joining [A]’s founder Cruce Saunders for an on-demand webinar, Building Chatbots with Intelligent Content. The webinar is part of a virtual summit on intelligent agents and chatbots and hosted by The Content Wrangler and Content Rules on BrightTALK.

Download the [A] Guide to Unlocking the Chatbot Inside Your CMS

Get the [A] Guide to Unlocking the Chatbot Inside Your CMS, a two-part white paper on single-sourcing content for new interactive channels. Part 1 explains how to deliver content for chatbots and future on-deman channels using the content management system (CMS) you already maintain. Part 2 walks you step-by-step through the process of syncing, linking, marrying, and integrating chatbot content with your CMS.

Ask [A] for help with multichannel marketing, content engineering, personalization, cms-driven chatbots, and digital maturity.