BOT-ified Salesforce: Mobile Presence without Mobile App

On April 12 2016, Facebook launched a new platform for companies to connect with customers in totally new way — using Facebook Messenger BOTs.

There are 1 billion users on Facebook messenger platform, BOTs allow customer to talk in natural language, like “Cancel my Booking”. This is significant leap considering organizations mobile CRM strategy, considering :

  1. FB messenger platform lets customer to talk to companies without installing company’s dedicated app.
  2. Customer’s neither need to switch context and nor need to provide credentials again.

Currently, every company wants to have a fabulous Mobile app, question is, can every customer install all the apps from each service provider. Even if we consider Moore’s law it would be tough to have all the App’s on ones mobile, not from computing and capacity perspective but from the app management. Also, it would require its own security layer.

Facebook Messenger BOT platform provides numerous predefined templates i.e. Button, Receipt, Boarding Pass. Also industry specific template to interact with customers with text, file, photo and video sharing capabilities. These templates can be customized as per business need. This platform also helps in establishing proper dialogue with customers in natural language. You can get more details here.

Salesforce considering this as a enormous potential for new Sales/Service channel, check Salesforce Article for more details.

Here is the scenario explaining integration with Facebook Messenger BOT platform from service perspective. Though, the functionality has lot of potential, limits of BOTifican still to be explored. Considering the scope of this article, this BOT will respond to customers, with their name and contact details fetched from the Salesforce. Also create an event of type “Facebook Interaction” in Salesforce for that contact. You can watch the BOT in action in this video.

You can find source code at this Git repository. To get more technical aspects of this, you can reach git wiki here.

Test the BOT yourself by deploying it on Heroku using deploy Heroku button. Just fill the configuration variables of your salesforce org and your facebook webhook to get it running.