Conversations 2019 Meet the Speakers: Carrie Gottschalk (Recap)

carrie gottschalk recap

No matter how big your business is, the relationships that you build is what it’s all about. And we believe — and we’re sure you do too — that there is no better way to be able to bring those relationships together than at a live event. 

At Conversations 2019, not only will you learn how to build customer relationships through Messenger, you’ll build relationships with other entrepreneurs, marketers, small business owners, and agencies. You’ll walk away with skills to evolve your strategy based on the Facebook changes, bot-building hacks, and new marketing skills. 

One tactic many have asked about is how to build relationships to boost events. We heard your questions, and we’re excited to bring on Carrie Gottschalk, a Facebook marketing strategist, who discusses how she filled a TEDx event using Messenger bots.

Carrie has a deep understanding of how you can use ManyChat to increase awareness for an event and push sales through Messenger. During this episode of Meet the Speakers, Molly Mahoney and Carrie dive into the strategies she used for TEDxMileHigh that saw 5X ROAS. 

Grab your notepad: You’ll want to jot down these hacks. 

Wanting more tips and advice to grow your business? Come to Conversations 2019!

How did you get started in the world of digital marketing? 

I started in newspaper, selling print advertising. How boring is that, right? But it was right when [print] everything was changing. We were switching into an “online first” mentality. I then transitioned into selling ads online for the newspaper and working with social media, trying to get us in that mindset. So that’s kind of where it all got started with the advertising on social media.

When social media first was getting started, we were telling people to take the physical newspaper with them on spring break to take a photo,  then submit it to us for a contest for being seen around the world with The Daily. It was a combination of when everything was transitioning, and we were trying to combine it, switch mindsets, move, and learn, and grow with all of the platforms. And that just kind of has been the story of the last 10 years of my life.

You’ve managed live events. How valuable is a bot for this type of event? 

CG: Not to go too far into everything I’ll be speaking about at the conference, but events are great for attendees. So opposed to having to carry around a schedule sheet, trying to figure out where things are, or keep going to the website and checking everything. For the attendee, the bot can be really helpful to share speaker information, share the schedule, find out when lunch is. And then it also helps the other side, the producer, organize and communicate in real-time. If people have questions, they can get into the bot and get info instantly. 

Tell us about the events that you’ve run bots for, like the one that you’re going to be discussing at Conversations 2019.

CG: I actually got started in 2017. I learned about bots in March. So I want everyone that’s listening to understand, I was not an expert when I released this bot by any means. And I started just bringing clients on for free, asking, “Hey, can I build you a bot?

Then I got TEDx as a client in the summer, only a couple of months later, and I asked them, “Can I build a bot for your event?” The event was the largest event to date. Over 5,000 people. They said, “Yeah. Go for it. You seem like you know what you’re doing.” It was the first paid bot that I had ever built for an audience of over 5,000 people.

That was in November. I mean, it was all within the same year. I just went home and watched ManyChat videos. They only had the YouTube channel at the time, they didn’t have the whole education thing yet either. It’s a learning process. I mean, we’ve only been doing this for what? Two and a half, three years maybe? 

What happened with the TedX bot and the event?

CG: At first I just built it for the attendees — I held the attendees in mind. I saw when I was learning about it — not to skip over the question — but I saw at a conference how Molly Pittman was using a bot to sell tickets.

She was using the ad side, and then I went to the F8 developer’s conference and they had the codes up where you are scanning them as an attendee to use it as an event guide. So I saw both sides of it, and that’s where I had the idea to build it for TEDx.

I was building it first from the attendee’s side. We had these giant poster boards all over the event, and it was really funny how the attendees reacted to it, never seeing it before. 

The attendees would take their phone out, go into Messenger, and scan the code. What that would do for them is to deliver them a welcome message, and I gave them three simple options: Do you want to learn about speakers? Do you need a map of the venue? Do you want to know the schedule for the day? And that was pretty much it. So it helped navigate them through the event. And if there were any changes, any questions, we built it to help, such as “How do I sit? Where does seating work?” So we’d set up the keyword to trigger how seating works.”Is there food? When is lunch?” We’d set up an autoresponder to tell them about that. If you think about trying to feed 5,000 people, it takes a while. So we’d actually give them the menus, the locations; that way it actually sped up the lunch lines.

And then, if you ever host or coordinate event, as much as we want to stay on schedule and say that we’re going to, there’s always going to be a little bit of flux. So we used it for crowd control too.f lunch ran long, we would broadcast a message out that said, “Hey, time to get back to your seats. We’re going to continue the program in 10 minutes. Doors will be shut if you’re not inside.” 

During the actual event, were you locked in a room, glued to the bot?

CG: The first couple of times, yes. Only because the first time you built it — and this is true for any bot, not just events —  when you schedule out the keywords, you’re anticipating questions, but you’re not going to know everyone especially when you’re at an event. I was talking to Rich Brooks about this: l, The random things you get questions on or people complain about (“Hey, Molly. It’s too cold in here.”), you’re not going to have that program., 

Have you been successful with QR codes? 

The first time I put up a board, people would walk past it, not sure what to do. But then one or two people would scan it. And then it was like a herd. Everyone was like, “Oh, how do I use this? I want to download it. What’s it do for the event?” As long as people know what it is, I think it’ll actually be more successful switching back to the QR code.

Whatever QR code generator you’re using, you’d link that with a messenger Ref URL. Like a link within ManyChat, yeah?

CG: That’s what I think the workaround is right now until they actually officially make the switch, and I haven’t seen it rolled out. I know it’s happening this month. Once we actually get the update we’ll be able to then go live and update everyone on how to properly switch over.

Which is another reason you want to come to the ManyChat Conversation Conference because this is where we’re going to be talking about so many of the updates so that we can stay ahead of the curve.

About Our Facebook Live Meet the Speakers Series

Each week Molly Mahoney hosts a LIVE interview with one of our Conversations 2019 speakers to give you the opportunity to meet them and learn their secrets to successful Messenger marketing. It’s a way to ask questions that you might not be able to ask at the conference and discover more about what will be discussed at Conversations 2019.

Here are the details.

When: Thursday, 9 am PDT.

  1. Go to our Facebook page: ManyChat.
  2. Click on the Live announcement.
  3. Watch, learn, and ask questions.

And if you haven’t registered for Conversations 2019, do so before prices go up! Reserve your spot.

We’ll see you LIVE! #Conversations2019

Learn more about our other Conversations 2019 Speakers:

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The contents of this blog were independently prepared and are for informational purposes only. The opinions expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of ManyChat or any other party. Individual results may vary.