It’s 2020 – and the chatbot has taken over the web.
Sometimes they know the answer or provide us with the link to some tucked away part of the company’s website where you can find a step by step solution to your problem.
Now imagine being a student applying for college, searching through the admissions tab looking for the answer to the hundreds of questions that are running through your mind while you are trying to make one of the biggest decisions of your life thus far.
What would you want to know?
Chatbots are great for providing certain bits of information. Like the dates of application deadlines, links to register for open house, where to submit your FAFSA or even how to apply for housing on campus.
But the truth is, this little machine is just a computer.
When it comes to the questions that truly matter in the decision-making process, the questions about how your life will change by attending a specific college, something more is needed.
A chatbot will never be able to tell a prospect how it felt to move from India to Oregon to attend college.
It won’t be able to talk about how difficult it is to balance academics and athletics in the basketball team.
It can’t talk about the differences between the Business Administration major and the Management major.
A current student, on the other hand, can relate to that prospect and ease their concerns.
These are the questions that really impact our decision making, and whether you use chatbots or not you need to make sure your prospective students can reach the people that can provide answers.
AI is evolving fast and it’s no wonder that chatbots are all the range.
They are a low-effort, effective way to provide answers quickly. But your website still needs a layer of authenticity: and only a real human voice can provide that.
If you’ve already got a chatbot – there’s no need to get rid of it! You can add peer-to-peer to your university website in just a couple of clicks.
Leave the technical information and the digital wayfinding to your chatbot. Let your students tell their authentic stories.
If you haven’t got one, but you’re considering it, Unibuddy is great as an alternative or complement to your chatbot offering.