MarTech Interview with Larry Kim, Founder and CEO at MobileMonkey

MarTech Interview with Larry Kim, Founder and CEO at MobileMonkey
MarTech Interview with Larry Kim, Founder and CEO at MobileMonkey

“AI, ML and Automation are helping businesses gain more efficiencies to become more competitive and scale faster with technology.”

Tell us about your journey into Technology.

I studied Electrical Engineering from the University of Waterloo in Canada. In my Senior year, Mike Lazaridis, CEO of Research in Motion, the maker of the BlackBerry, which was a multi-hundred billion dollar mobile device company at the time, did a talk with my class about technology and entrepreneurship. I was blown away and vowed to one day create a software company of my own!

As a Search Engine Marketing expert, what unique challenges did you meet and overcome in this journey?

Search Engine Marketing is an interesting field where outspoken individuals hold strong beliefs based largely based on conjecture. My contribution to the industry was to bring new experiments and data into the conversation to advance our collective understanding of how the algorithms for paid search, organic search, and Facebook news feed algorithms work.

What is MobileMonkey and what makes it special?

MobileMonkey is an industry-leading Chatbot Marketing platform, letting you automatically connect to your future customers at scale on the messaging platforms they already use. As a company, we have built a lot of chatbot tools for marketers to utilize and we’ve also committed ourselves to help marketers learn how to use chatbots in their Marketing. We have a great, educational blog and host Marketing events to update users on our product and to teach more about Chatbot Marketing.

Tell us how Brand-Audience relationship with chatbots evolved over the last 12-18 months.

People are becoming more comfortable with interacting with chatbots in their communication with brands. Even in making purchases. 75% of people prefer messaging to any other form of contact. That’s an open door for the growth of Chatbot Marketing. 95% of consumers think that customer service is going to be a major benefit of chatbots. That’s because they’re fast and they’re efficient. By 2020, over 80% of businesses are expected to have some sort of chatbot feature implemented.

What are the current benchmarks in Facebook Marketing chatbot?

Ideally, you should maximize positive engagement metrics like open rates and click-rates while simultaneously reducing negative engagement metrics like unsubscribes, block rate, which can result in getting banned.

Which Chatbot applications have been most readily adopted in this industry and what is their ROI?

Lead generation chatbot applications are some of the most popular. They’re the top of the funnel, and they use all the facebook ads targeting features, but they’re enhanced as the user gets to have a personalized conversation with a bot instead of landing on a static web page.

Lead qualification chatbots qualify leads automatically, asking questions in an engaging way that people are less likely to abandon than a web page.

Another popular feature is integration. All the data you collect from your chatbot can be sent directly to your other Marketing platforms. This can help you grow your email list faster, get more webinar registrations, book more appointments with higher conversion rates, etc. because you can ask fewer questions and it’s more engaging.

Chatbots are automated, so they save money. Facebook Messenger Marketing has a lower cost per acquisition, higher return on ad spend, and a higher conversion rate than Newsfeed or Email Marketing.

How easy or hard is it to acquire and retain customers in your industry?

In the last year, we’ve acquired hundreds of thousands of customers so the demand is there. But wouldn’t say it was easy as there are dozens of bot companies out there that are going nowhere. It’s ironic – most Marketing software companies go out of business due to poor Marketing.

What are the unique opportunities for Omnichannel Marketing teams? How does Facebook Marketing chatbot help such marketers meet Omnichannel goals?

Omnichannel Marketing helps scale brands. Omnichannel Marketing teams have the advantage of utilizing multiple Marketing channels to reach a larger audience and increase their brand awareness, engagement, and sales. Facebook Messenger chatbots are useful in this case because they can be applied to a number of different platforms. There are website chatbot widgets and WordPress chatbot plugins.

In addition to that, however, you can use Facebook messenger ads, so when a user sees an ad on Facebook or Instagram and click it, it takes them to a chatbot. Omnichannel Marketing teams can take advantage of this technological bonus by applying it to their various Marketing channels.

What are your benchmarks in Content Marketing? How do you know if it is working?

We benchmark our organic search traffic as well as other user engagement metrics related to our Content Marketing efforts. We know if it’s working or not by looking at the daily sign-up rate and where the installs came from.

How does all the buzz around AI ML and Automation help to identify and acquire profitable customers?

AI, ML and Automation are helping businesses gain more efficiencies to become more competitive and scale faster with technology. It can be challenging for small and mid-sized businesses to know where to start when evaluating and adopting MarTech for AI, ML, and Automation. MobileMonkey provides a fairly simple-to-use AI for answering frequently asked questions. It’s a straight-forward use case and an easy implementation to have a chatbot answer, “What are your hours?” “Where are you located?” “how much is shipping?” and other common questions.

MobileMonkey was awarded the Best Marketing Bot Solution of 2019 by MarTech BreakThrough Awards because of the easy-to-use interface and bot-building tools. When small and mid-sized businesses are looking to scale through Automation and Artificial Intelligence tech, we’re working hard so that MobileMonkey is the easiest to use and obvious platform.

Which Marketing and Sales Automation tools and technologies do you currently use at MobileMonkey?

Too many to list out.

What AI-based Social Media and Search Engine Marketing Innovations will we see for the next 5 years?

AI systems in search and social media leverage user engagement as a feedback loop to help figure out which content should be featured prominently in a search engine result or news feed item. Unfortunately, because people love to engage with fake content, these systems make it easy for anyone to proliferate fake news.

Therefore it follows that new AI content recommendation systems for search and social need to be developed which take into consideration the possibility that the training data is fake.

How do you prepare for an AI-centric world as a Business Leader?

Business folks need not bother learning the mechanics of AI – you just need to know where to apply it.

Wherever you find yourself manually applying business rules, for example:

  • Scoring of Marketing leads
  • Determining product pricing
  • Choosing ad targeting criteria (etc.)
  • Determining Bid Management Strategies
  • You (or an aspiring product vendor) should be thinking about applying an AI-approach to solving the problem

How do you inspire your people to work with technology?

We do a lot of Content Marketing – Publishing “how-to”-style articles as well as examples of using chatbots for Marketing.

One word that best describes how you work.

Unicorns.

Which superhero do you most profoundly relate to?

Spider-Man cracks me up.

Tag a person in your industry who you would like to see answer these questions.

Oli Gardner, Founder of Unbounce.

Thank you, Larry! That was fun and hope to see you back on MarTech Series soon.

Larry Kim is the founder and CEO of MobileMonkey, the world’s best Facebook Messenger marketing platform. He’s been named Search Marketer of the Year from PPC Hero (2013, 2014, 2015, and 2017), Search Engine Land, and the US Search Awards. Larry is ranked the #8 most popular author on Medium. He’s a contributor to CNBC and Inc. Magazine.

He’s a notable expert on Facebook Messenger chatbot marketing, AdWords, Facebook Ads, entrepreneurship and start-ups. Larry founded MobileMonkey to give marketers the opportunity to connect with customers using Facebook Messenger marketing on the most popular mobile chat application, used by over a billion people every day.

mobilemonkey logo

MobileMonkey is the world’s best Facebook Messenger marketing platform. Connect with customers on the chat platform used by over 1.3 billion people around the world.

MobileMonkey makes it easy to build chatbots and execute marketing automations without writing a line of code. Marketers can do chat blasting, drip campaigns and list building in Messenger with powerful chatbot building tools.

The MTS Martech Interview Series is a fun Q&A style chat which we really enjoy doing with martech leaders. With inspiration from Lifehacker’s How I work interviews, the MarTech Series Interviews follows a two part format On Marketing Technology, and This Is How I Work. The format was chosen because when we decided to start an interview series with the biggest and brightest minds in martech – we wanted to get insight into two areas … one – their ideas on marketing tech and two – insights into the philosophy and methods that make these leaders tick.

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