New bot launches, product updates, highlights from Facebook’s F8 Developer Conference and a killer game of darts. Here’s the latest news from this month at TBP.

Citizens Advice

Our friends at Citizens Advice have been busy building various Workplace bots to help their staff be more productive at work. Most recently, they held a kickoff workshop with some members of The Bot Platform’s sales and CX team to map out all the current processes, questions and frustrations that their employees have with all things finance. The result? A day of bot strategy, walls covered in post its, lots of laughs and a brilliant Finance Bot deployed to their Workplace instance. Read more on the process the team went through to map out and build the bot in this excellent medium post by their Workplace Engagement Officer, Pandora Longstreth.

Virgin Trains

On the Messenger front, if you’ve ever been to the bathroom on a Virgin Train you’ll be familiar with the voice reminding you of common train toilet etiquette. So, as part of their ‘Toilet Role’ campaign, Virgin teamed up with cultural institution and Eastender soap icon, Dean Gaffney, and London based creative agency, Cubaka, to create a bot packed full of toilet puns, silly GIFs and top acting advice and techniques that invited users to audition to become the next official voice of Virgin’s bathrooms. The bot attracted over 9000 users in 3 weeks, and received over 5000 wonderfully acted voice submissions.

Sony Playstation

To help fans and gamers using Playstation Plus, a platform for PS4 online multiplayer, exclusive discounts and monthly giveaways, Sony Playstation used The Bot Platform to build a bot that showcases all the latest releases on the Playstation network and highlight different Playstation Plus features. By using stills from all their big name titles, Playstation have been able to create a visually stunning and information-rich bot that invites users to explore topics in more detail and get the most out of the Playstation Plus service. A promoted launch of the Playstation bot is coming soon, but you can play with it yourself by clicking here.

St John's Parish School

Educational institution and Workplace user, St. John’s Parish School, have just launched their first bot on Workplace by Facebook that helps staff complete their timesheets by sending friendly reminders and providing relevant information and advice to get them submitted. They’re currently working on a second bot focussed on FAQ automation to help staff using the human capital management and workforce management solutions service, Kronos.

AICP Community Award

The AICP have announced the first-ever AICP Community Award, that will be presented during AICP Week in June. The new honor will be selected by the public from among the shortlisted work in the AICP Show Advertising Excellence category and, you guessed it, voting takes place via a Messenger bot built using The Bot Platform. Have your say in which piece of work should win the first ever AICP Community Award by clicking here.

New Webinar on Supercharging staff engagement

Technology has enabled us to be more connected than ever on a social level, but communication gaps and disconnections in the workplace still exist. Employees are pushing for more engagement, and leadership teams need to spearhead the shift. In our latest Webinar Cnnected founder, Gus Van Dender, talks about how organizations are using messaging, bots and Workplace by Facebook to improve collaboration and solve communication problems. Read the full blog post, here

As always, we’ve continued to add to our feature set and product, so you can build the best bots possible on Workplace and Messenger.

Workplace new user experience

We’re always looking for ways to make it as easy as possible to create bots using our platform. As such, we’ve just rolled out a new Workplace user experience that allows you to start building bots on the platform before setting up a new Workplace integration, and provides a helpful step-by-step guide that walks you through the process in a super easy to understand way. Once you’re happy with the experience you’ve built, you can then set up the integration on Workplace and connect your bot. Easy!

Media responses to stickers and documents

Previously, bots were able to respond if a user sent your bot an image, video or audio file. Now, we also support stickers and documents. Bot admins can create a reply for these types of media which both acknowledges the receipt and keeps the bot journey moving forwards, whether it’s from a fan or customer sending a sticker or an employee or staff member sending a PDF or presentation.

On top of new bot launches, customer news and product updates, we’ve also had plenty of other things going on too!

Messenger updates from F8

Last week we were in sunny San Jose for Facebook’s annual F8 Developer Conference. It was a big year for Facebook news with privacy and community being at the center of the announcements. Messenger has also continued to see huge growth over the past 12 months, with Facebook announcing that there are now over 20 Billion messages sent between people and businesses every month – a 10x increase from last year. Other Messenger updates included an upcoming unified inbox, a faster and lighter Messenger app, a new Watch Together feature and a fresh new design for both Messenger and Facebook. You can read the all the updates from F8, here.

Workplace updates from F8

While most of F8 focussed on Facebook’s B2C offerings, there was also plenty of news relating to their enterprise communications platform, Workplace, including a fresh new design. Meanwhile, Syd Lawrence and one of our customers, Marcos Eleftheriou, joined Global Director of Product Marketing at Workplace, Christine Overby, on stage to talk about how Workplace and bots were helping companies be more productive at work. Check out their on-stage talk, by clicking here.

Shorty Awards Success

This month also saw the announcement of the 11th Annual Shorty Awards, with two of our clients being nominated as finalists. US women’s retailer, Chico’s was a finalist in the ‘Best use of multi-platform campaign’ category for their #HowBoldAreYou campaign, while the shamazing team at RuPaul’s Drag Race was a finalist in the ‘Best use of Facebook Messenger’ category.

A bullseye for team bonding

While our team is dotted around the globe, we still like to regularly get everyone together. And, being a competitive bunch, a team bonding session at the epic Flight Club in Victoria, London, was always going to be a bag of laughs. Plus, what could possibly go wrong when combining alcohol consumption with throwing sharp objects. Thankfully, no eyes were lost but plenty of pride was as our COO, Joe, proceeded to take out each team member one by one.

Join the team!

We’re always looking for talented people to join our team, and we currently have two new roles available. So, if you’re an awesome Sales Development Representative or Developer looking to join an innovative company on a mission to help people be more productive at work, then get in touch! Check out the job openings page and get in touch if you’d like to become part of the team!

Want to learn more?

Let’s talk about how your business or organization can benefit from bots on Workplace by Facebook and Messenger.

Get in touch today!