Meet Lego’s Facebook Messenger chatbot Ralph, a helpful alternative to bricks and mortar

Ralph the bot to drive Lego sales on Facebook

Lego has embraced a Facebook Messenger chatbot to help engage fans and aid consumers with gift indecision in the run up to Christmas.

Ralph the giftbot has been created as a guide through the notoriously stacked back catalogue of Lego kits. He was built to capitulate upon Christmas indecision around gift-making and to give Lego an ecommerce foothold on the social network.

James Poulter, senior manager, digital consumer engagement at Lego, said: “We are continuously searching for new and fun ways to engage with our consumers and shoppers. Chat bots are increasingly being used by brands to engage in the digital space, and in turn to drive sales. The Lego Group is one of the first in the toy industry to embrace this concept.”

The bot has been developed as a streamlined experience where user inputs are limited to answering questions via on-screen prompts. Ralph the Robot asks users questions like their age, budget, and the type of sets they are interested in. A few seconds later and a slew of kits have been coughed up for purchase, complete with free shipping.

This controlled environment has been designed where user inputs are limited, meaning that Ralph’s responses will be solely created to reduce friction from potential purchases on the social network. The tone is broken up with numerous Gifs of the bot in action.

Genelle Holton, UK digital marketing manager, stated that Facebook’s market reach made it a desirable platform to host the bot on. Ricardo Caetano, global creative strategist at Facebook Creative Shop, added: "The Messenger Platform enables businesses to build experiences that facilitate connection with customers, create meaningful interactions and ultimately drive results."

Try the bot out here. It is featured in UK, US, Canada, France, Germany and Poland.

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