Hootsuite, a social media management company, has announced the acquisition of Heydey, a Montreal-based conversational AI platform, for $60 million (€40 million). With this arrival, this player in the industry of social network management software for companies aims to strengthen its leadership in social marketing and commerce. The goal: to help brands generate more sales via social networks thanks to conversational AI.
Social media management and its use by e-commerce players
Hootsuit is a social media manager for businesses. Currently, the firm has 200,000 paying accounts and several million users covering brands and organizations of all sizes. This support is the result of a survey conducted by Hootsuite: there are now more than 4.2 billion users on social networks and each of them spends an average of more than two hours and twenty-five minutes per day on social networks and messaging platforms.
E-commerce specialists have noticed this and are increasingly exploiting these two channels to their advantage. Hootsuit has found it relevant to follow this path as well by offering features to create more engaging and personalized customer experiences. That’s why the company decided to acquire Heydey, a live chat and messaging platform that leverages conversational AI, for €40 million. Tom Keiser, president and CEO of Hootsuite, explains this strategy:
“Social networks are the new interface for sales and customer care. The challenge for modern brands is to manage the ever-increasing number of customer interactions and conversations at scale, which is impossible without the help of AI and automation. With the acquisition of Heyday, Hootsuite will now offer AI capabilities to marketing, sales and customer service teams around the world to help them deliver exceptional customer experiences at scale.”
Hootsuite’s acquisition of Heyday, a conversational artificial intelligence platform
Steve Desjarlais, co-founder and president of Heyday, discusses the new features that will be available to not only current, but also future Hootsuite customers:
“We designed Heyday’s conversational platform to reimagine the customer experience and make buying online as easy as texting a friend. With Hootsuite, we’ll bridge the gap between the online and offline experience, putting social networks and messaging apps at the heart of the modern customer journey.”
One of Heyday’s goals is to be able to personalize the customer experience during their purchase through its conversational AI tool. Its platform is available in multiple languages and regions around the world. Its acquisition by Hootsuite should allow the latter to offer exchanges across more touchpoints and messaging apps with a view to creating new engagement opportunities for deeper relationships. Tom Keiser explains this in conclusion:
“Personalizing marketing and reducing friction in the customer journey has the power to build trust with consumers and more lasting relationships. The new generation of consumers wants to interact with brands, make purchases and get real-time customer service directly through social networks. Today, the customer relationship begins and ends on social networks and we are proud to offer brands a complete solution to manage every customer interaction in a single point and take the relationship to another level.”