116-year-old company Kiehl’s has launched its first bot on Facebook Messenger. Though the “Virtual Kiehl’s Customer Representative” does not don the iconic Kiehl’s white lab coat, it promises mobile customers a similar variety of services.
The bot offers access to customer service, recommendations and searches organized by product type, skin concerns, and more. From there, users can go to the product detail page and purchase the item on the spot.
Like other bots related to cosmetics or fashion, the personalization of the bot experience is especially crucial when it comes to skincare. The company boasts a diverse product selection but the bot simplifies the experience and makes it a welcoming experience for first-time users. A small, but amazing note is that Kiehl’s bot allows users an “other” gender option when asking how the user identifies. You rarely see that kind of consideration from brands, much less ones over a hundred years old!
The bot’s voice is friendly, full of emojis, and eager to please. For customers who may be a bit disgruntled or confused, a quick service menu allows them to talk to a human, check on an order, and request more hands-on assistance.
The bot serves as a relief for any curious customer who doesn’t feel like driving out to the nearest mall or airport to find a Kiehl’s store. The biggest downside, we imagine, is that those with more sensitive concerns or caution might prefer being in the store for samples and assistance. VP of Marketing Eve Arnera says the bot is for “the younger customer who’s on Messenger and doesn’t have time to go to the store” and this seems like a is great strategy for converting younger customers to Kiehl’s.
Chris Salgardo, President of Kiehl’s USA, points to the bot’s convenience factor and reach, noting, “As a company, part of putting the customer first is making sure that you can be found where they are, and by bringing our service to Messenger, we’ll be able to do just that. The social community is growing much faster than we can build stores, and customers will be able to interact with Kiehl’s in their social community even if we’re not yet in their physical neighborhood.” Considering Kiehl’s has such a strong brand of in-store service, it’s exciting to see the company bring that online as well.
Are you a loyal Kiehl’s user? Would you use a bot to pick out skin products? Let us know in the comments below!