Lesson 4 | Creating a chatflow

HubSpot offers a leading and elegant chat solution

Chat flows

Chat flows, or chatbots, are becoming a fundamental way for you to engage with visitors. The HubSpot platform gives a really elegant solution to chat, offering the ability for personalisation and routing directly from the information in the CRM, making it one of the leaders within the market.  

Before you begin this process, take some time to plan what you want your bot to do. Look at the five elements of contextual conversational marketing:

  • What page is your consumer on? Are they on educational content, high intent content, blog content or informational?
  • Who is the person aiming to engage? Are they new, returning or a target account?
  • Where did they come from? An ad, organic traffic or Webinars etc.
  • What are they doing on the page? Do they want support, to buy or to ask a question?
  • When do they want to engage? This answer is simple - whenever they feel like it, and not before!

Once you understand this, you then need to plot out how the conversation will flow. Remember, this needs to have the consumer in mind and should always keep these three things in mind: How can you engage, understand and recommend value to the customer? We recommend plotting this out in a tool like draw.io which is a free workflow visualisation tool that integrates with Google drive. 

Once you have planned out your chat flow, then start the creation process.

To create a chat flow, navigate to conversations tab and select Chatflows. This will bring you to the chat flow interface, where you will be able to see any chat flows that you have created and turn them on or off using the toggle on the right.

Select Create a Chatflow from the top right. This will open up a new window with four options on the left-hand side. From here, you can choose to set up a Welcome Bot, Qualification Bot, Meetings Booking Bot or a Support Bot. These are essentially templates for your chat bot. We recommend that you choose Qualify Leads as your template, as this will give you more control over the overall process. 

Once you have picked your chat flow type, navigate to the bottom right and select Next. This will then ask you to pick a selection inbox, which will ask you which inbox you want to connect the bot too. Select the required inbox then press create. This will bring you into the mail builder.

Firstly, name your chat flow using a naming convention in the top bar. Next, you will see a screen with a workflow in the middle. This is your chat flow and it works in a similar way to the workflows within HubSpot. First, delete all the boxes after the “get name” message to give yourself a blank(ish) template. This can’t be removed and it gives you a good basis for UX by ensuring you are gathering their name.

Next, press the plus button under the box to add in a step to your flow. This’ll open up a series of options in an interface on the right. You can do the following options:

  • Send a message
  • If/then branch
  • Offer an email subscription
  • Set contact property value
  • Set company property value
  • Add to static list
  • Submit a ticket
  • Knowledge base lookup
  • Send to a team member
  • Book a meeting
  • Enroll in a workflow
  • Trigger a webhook
  • Run a code snippet

Using these actions, you need to begin to build out your flow. In this example, we are going to show you how to set up a lead qualification flow with a live chat option. 

First, we would add in a Send a Message button so we can set them up to give the person the option of speaking via live chat. To do this, we select Send a Message Button from the right. 

This will open up the criteria for the block for you to amend. Add a name in at the top; as your internal referral point, this should be something simple like “intro text”. 

Next, move to the message section and begin to type your message. In this example, it will be “hi {first name} How can we help?”. We can add add in personalisation to make this more human.  

Next, you need to click on Save at the bottom of the interface. This will create your first block. 

Next, press the plus sign and add another block. In this example it will be an if/then branch block. 

Once you have selected this, the right-hand side interface will open. Select the if/then branch button. 

This will open up the response window. Add your logic into this box. In this example we will add in the “Speak to a Human” option, so we select "Speak to a Human" as the response. 

Next, select the go to action, which will direct you to begin a new action.

Select "Send a Simple Message" where you will confirm to the user what they have just done. Type in your message and select "Save".

Next, click the plus sign on that action and select the next action, which in this case will be sent to a team member. Here you will need to add in the criteria of who you want to send to and what happens if they are not available. Once finished, save this step.

And that is the basic structure for creating a chatbot.

Now you will need to set up the rest of the bot. You can do this by navigating to the left-hand side and selecting the “Who” block. Here, you can decide who will see your chat flow. You can choose from anyone: anonymous visitors, tracked contacts and segmented lists. You can also hide a chat flow from particular contact lists too. 

Once you have decided on this, move to the next stage on the left block: “When”. Here you will need to add in the URL or pages that you want the chat flow to appear on. 

Select this and then move to stage 4: “ Options”. Here you will add in the name of your bot, as well as:

  • Add a delay between messages
  • Decide when the bot times out 
  • Add in error messaging
  • Select the bot's language 
  • And finally, the data privacy and consent rules that you want to apply to the bot

Finally, navigate to the top right and select preview to preview your bot. Run through the process a few times to test, then when you are happy with the bot, press the slider button beside the preview button to set this live. And there you have it - your first bot and conversation inbox is now set up.