With the rise of social media, there has also been an increase in the use of social media bots. Social media bots are automated programs that can perform tasks on social media platforms. In this blog article, we will explore social media bots, their benefits, and their potential risks.
What Is a Bot on Social Media?
A social media bot is a software program programmed for certain automatic tasks on social media platforms and can executes these tasks either regularly or reactively. These tasks can include liking posts, following users, posting content, and even engaging with other users. Social media bots often mimic human activity, however, once activated, they perform automatic actions on their own, without a human interaction.
What are social media bots used for?
Many social media bots perform regular, automatic actions to increase efficiency and all-hours availability on social media platforms, to update weather forecasts, or to show sports scores. But there are also malicious bots used with malevolent intent. They analyze the social media activity and “decides” which actions to take depending on the situation.
Benefits of social media bots
Social media bots could be used to perform many good and necessary tasks, which helps to save time and increase efficiency. These are the benefits of social media bots:
- Chatbots. Chatbots provide simple 24/7 customer service, guiding clients on social media platforms through basic product-ordering processes and sales, or providing answers to simple questions.
- Marketing social media bots. Marketing social media bots can improve engagement on social media and increase followers. Bots can be programmed to engage with users, increasing the likelihood that they will follow and engage with a business or brand. By increasing engagement, social media bots can help businesses build a stronger social media presence and increase brand awareness.
- Social media post generators. Social media content generators can automatically create posts for social media that are personalized to your audience, and that will help you to increase your brand’s visibility.
- Actual content. Social media bots can suggest people, events or products of your interest on social media. Based on your searches, previous events attended, or products bought, algorithms suggest similar stuff you may be interested in.
- News bots alert followers to breaking news on topics they’re interested in.
- Customer surveys. An automated survey allows you to send customer surveys from your account after the completion of a function such as a product purchase or a query.
- Twitch bots let followers process song requests on the live-streaming platforms for gamers and other lifestyle casters.
- Counter-terrorism. Social media bots can support counter-terrorism by analyzing suspicious events or posts on social media.
- Fraud prevention. Chatbots can detect fraudulent activity much better than humans can. An AI-based chatbot can detect when the real customer is supposed to be based in a particular place, yet the incoming IP address is in another country. Chatbots can also analyze the voiceprint of the user in real time, compare it with the previously stored voiceprints and detect if the current user is the real user or not. They can also detect tension, nervousness or even malicious intent by analyzing the voiceprints in real time.
- Data security. Financial institutions receive much personally identifiable information (PII) from their customers, which must be kept safely. Humans will never be 100 percent reliable due to negligence. AI-based social media bots, on the other hand, collect and process PII strictly according to the instructions.
- Personalized adviser. AI can understand bank customers spending habits by tracking their card transactions and could provide personalized budget and planning advice based on this data. Bots can also recommend investing portfolio updates or change the risk, mainly replacing the human financial adviser.
- Statistics. Social media bots use artificial intelligence, big data analytics, and other programs or databases to collect huge database of statistics about users and their interactions with the brands of interest and monitor your social marketing progress.
- Recognition. Social media marketing bots also employ artificial intelligence and voice-recognition technology, which allows to outperform humans in sectors where user identity is needed.
Risks of social media bots
While social media bots can provide many benefits, there are also many risks of using them. Malicious social media bots could perform the following functions:
- Misinformation spread. Social media bots can be programmed to spread fake news, conspiracy theories, or engage in spammy behavior, damaging a business’s reputation and confusing users.
- Fake activity on social media. Bots can be used to artificially increase engagement metrics, such as likes, shares, or YouTube views.
- Social media manipulation. A person or organization with millions of social media followers can be seen as important or influential. An initial use of social media bots is to boost the apparent popularity of other accounts. These follower bots can be bought and sold on the black market.
- Influencing elections. A study by First Monday, a peer-reviewed journal, has found that in the day before the 2016 US presidential election, as much as 20% of social media political discussion was generated by about 400,000 social media bots. The bots could be programmed to choose a topics of discussions, or to promote a particular candidate.
- Manipulation of financial markets. Social media bots can also be used to influence financial markets. For example, bots can provide social media with good or bad news about a corporation, attempting to manipulate the direction of stock prices.
- Spreading spam. Social media bots are often used for illicit advertising purposes by spamming the social media platforms with links to websites.
- Phishing. Phishing attacks rely on an attacker gaining their victim’s confidence. Fake social media followers and social engagement can help convince a victim that the scammer could be trusted.
- Shutting down free speech. During the 2010-2012 Arab Spring movement, Arab government agencies used Twitter bots to overwhelm social media posts, which pushed down the messages of protestors and activists.
- Creating fake accounts. Twitter executives have testified before US Congress that as many as 5% of Twitter accounts are operated by bots. Experts believe that the actual number may be closer to 15%. This likely applies to other social platforms as well.
- Terrorist recruitment. Social media bots could promote content that could radicalize vulnerable audiences.
- Online harassment and hate speech could also be spread by social media bots quite easily.
Thus, malicious social media bots have significant impacts on political processes, banking industry, public health and safety, as well as users’ online activity and preferences.
Social Media Marketing Bots
One of the sectors where social media bots are used intensively is marketing. Free social media bots perform the most basic functions, while more advanced social media marketing bots could perform the following functions:
- Guide customers through a simple product-purchase process. Most of social media platforms like Facebook messenger, WhatsApp, WeChat, Viber and others use chatbots, which help to complete customers’ actions, from inquiry to sale and payment.
- Provide a 24/7 professional service.
- Create and publish social media posts.
- Improve engagement on social media.
- Increase followers.
- Increase brand awareness.
- Provide basic information such as working hours, times when products or services may be booked.
- Book an appointment.
- Answer common questions such as prices or delivery times.
- Notify consumers of special offers.
Postus- Your Social Media Marketing Bot
Looking for a social media marketing bot to increase your marketing activity and sales? There are many social media marketing bots on the market. Some of social media bots with basic functions are free, while for others you have to pay. One of the most important criteria for choosing the right social media marketing bot is it’s professional management and easiness of use.
With Postus social media marketing bot, you can manage your social accounts professionally and easily. Postus social media marketing bot allows you to:
- Create social media feeds, make changes instantly, and schedule your posts.
- Creates posts that are relevant to your brand.
- Automate social media posts.
- Manage multiple social accounts.
- Monitor your social marketing progress.
- Create detailed reports.
- Create content for Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, or other social media platforms.
Frequently Asked Questions
A social media bot is a software program programmed for certain automatic tasks on social media platforms and can executes these tasks either regularly or reactively. These tasks can include liking posts, following users, posting content, and even engaging with other users. With Postus social media marketing bot, you can manage your social accounts professionally and easily.
Social media bots could be used in marketing to engage with users and create posts, to provide customer surveys or communicate with customers. They are also used for counter-terrorism, fraud prevention, data security and other tasks. However, there are also many risks of using them, including misinformation spread, fake activity and manipulation on social media, influencing elections, manipulation of financial markets, spreading spam, and others.
Social media marketing bots are bots, used in marketing. They perform many functions, including guiding customers through a simple product-purchase process, providing a 24/7 professional service, creating and publishing social media posts, improving engagement on social media, increasing followers and brand awareness, and other tasks. Use professional and easy-to-use Postus social media marketing bot.
With Postus social media marketing bot, you can manage your social accounts professionally and easily. Postus social media marketing bot allows you to create social media feeds, make changes instantly, and schedule your posts, creates posts that are relevant to your brand, automate social media posts, manage multiple social accounts, monitor your social marketing progress, create detailed reports. You can create content for Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, or other social media platforms.
Postus social media bot is very easy to use. First, register to Postus. Second, provide online text input. This could be one line or a few sentences about your type of business. Third, make changes instantly and schedule your posts on social media. You could create your original and engaging social media content just in a few minutes!