HubSpot and Motion AI: Chatbot-Enabled CRM
HubSpot, an inbound marketing, sales, and customer relationship management (CRM) software provider, announced that it had acquired Motion AI, a software platform that enabled companies to easily build and deploy chatbots, fueled by artificial intelligence, to interact with their customers. Before unleashing bot-building technology to its B2B customers, HubSpot first needed to develop some best practices for the use of chatbots for CRM. First, the team had to clearly assess the trade-offs between effectiveness and efficiency associated with the use of bots versus humans to create, nurture, and manage customer relationships. Second, they had to decide to what extent to anthropomorphize the chatbots. How human-like should they be? Was a conversational user interface (UI) the desired solution for B2B CRM or would a stripped down, more functional UI produce more efficiency for the customers who interacted with the bot? Historically, HubSpot had "practiced what it preached," using its own products to build its business. The team had to consider whether to use chatbots to nurture and service its own customer relationships and manage the effectiveness and efficiency of its sales funnel. Currently, a team of chat representatives worked with marketing to qualify and prime prospects for HubSpot's sales team. Could they and should they be replaced with chatbots? Was HubSpot ready for bots to become the face of its brand to its prospective customers?