FUNBOT is not only a solution tailored to the needs of 4FUN.TV fans but also a technologically advanced chatbot, which combines three things in one: the brand website, application (4FUN APP), and broadcast system. This combination allowed 4FUN.TV to improve its social media marketing activities. It also proves that, thanks to FUNBOT’s unique features, both a TV and FB audience can be merged together in one place – the Messenger chatbot.
Today, I’m talking with Mateusz Górecki, who has been recently responsible for the development of 4FUN.TV. As he points out, he “is speaking not in the name of himself, but in the name of the company, sharing its viewpoint to preserve historical continuity.”
Andrzej Gruszka: When did 4FUN.TV first get interested in chatbots?
Mateusz Górecki: We actually got interested in chatbots immediately after Facebook announced its plans about releasing chatbots based on Facebook Messenger. Considering the fact that, for several years, we have been successfully developing the most advanced 2nd screen app in Poland – the 4FUN APP – finding its twin solution was a natural step.
AG: What really convinced 4FUN.TV to use a chatbot in brand communication?
MG: We’ve noticed that app distribution in Android and iOS stores, and then keeping user engagement at a constant or higher level, is a growing problem. Our app had to compete with hundreds of thousands of other apps in order to win the attention of users. With each passing month, the task became increasingly difficult. The possibility to build chatbots basing on the mechanisms and, most importantly, the reach of Facebook Messenger, seemed to be a great way to have a stronger presence in the consumer trends of our viewers. In this simple way, we found ourselves in Messenger, an app that is used by our recipients on a daily basis. We focused on encouraging user participation, avoiding communication like “download our app and do this and that”. To put is simply, we replaced this with the following message “write to 4FUN.TV”.
AG: What did your work on the development of FUNBOT look like?
MG: Together with KODA BOTS, we determined exactly what features of the 4FUN APP we want our FUNBOT to have. We developed a plan and implemented it together. Sounds simple, but as with every similar project, it was an organizational challenge. But we managed to face it. It’s worth emphasising that FUNBOT has many unique features in comparison to other chatbots in Poland, as well as in the world. It’s the result of an advanced integration with the interactive layer of our TV stations. I must compliment the KODA BOTS team as well as the internal project team because FUNBOT is the outcome of their successful cooperation. Lastly, I’d like to add that implementation is actually under way, as we are constantly coming up with new features and improving those that already exist.The years to come are going to be very interesting with FUNBOT.
AG: Your favorite feature of FUNBOT?
MG: Perhaps I’ll surprise you, but I don’t have any favorite feature. I like the whole FUNBOT, with all its capabilities and technological solutions. Its universality is the coolest part, we’ll each find something about it we like. For example, we can take part in a contest, check what’s being played on 4FUN TV stations, dedicate a music video to someone, vote for top songs, or even choose the next song to be aired.
AG: How did the fans find out about 4FUN.TV’s virtual assistant?
MG: Thanks to our promotion activities on our TV stations and social media accounts, they’re finding out new things about it all the time. Our viewer base is being constantly updated because FUNBOT is closely integrated with our TV stations.
AG: What are the most used features of FUNBOT?
MG: The most used features are contests, where users can send their answers on Messenger in the form of a text or image. Nowhere else in Poland can you find a contest constructed in such way. Besides special marketing activities, the viewers really treat the FUNBOT as an integral part of the TV station, as its extension. Users also like to sign up for notifications about TV shows they wait for, check what songs are currently on air, and make song dedications.
AG: What conclusions can you draw from several months of working on the FUNBOT?
MG: There’s only one conclusion – that it was an excellent choice. Thanks to FUNBOT, we have a closer and better contact with our viewers. They, in turn have a real impact on our TV station. It’s a win-win situation, to be honest. We’re glad to see that our statistics on the number and length of interactions are steadily increasing. We look positively to the future and we can’t wait to add new features to our chatbot.
AG: How will FUNBOT surprise us in the upcoming years?
MG: My answer is not going to be revolutionary, but for now, let me keep it a secret. Every minute, we’re coming up with new solutions, estimating their costs, showing our ideas to our partners. One thing we can be sure of is that the FUNBOT will never stop evolving. We pin our hopes on the bot in 2019, but we still have many plans for the future.
AG: Why KODA BOTS and not, for instance, free platforms for creating chatbots?
MG: Free platforms have serious functional limitations. I have to admit that they can work well for small websites as a more extended and partly automated communication channel, but if we’re talking about a larger integration, they won’t handle it. With more complicated projects, like FUNBOT, it’s worth having a partner, such as KODA BOTS, that specializes in chatbots. The consultancy and support that came from their implementation experience and chatbot market observation was truly invaluable.
AG: Thank you for the interview.
MG: Thank you, too.