FML Blog

In touch with innovation: talking to Politibot

Wednesday, August 02, 2017      Future Media Lab. team       0

 

The Future Media Lab. team is continuing our “In touch with innovation” series on our blog with a series of Q&A’s that were conducted with media start-ups from across Europe. In this edition, we spoke with Eduardo Suárez, the founder of Politibot in Spain. Politibot is developing a Bot Management System (BMS) to help any company to develop its own chatbot in an easy way.


Future Media Lab.: What is the main idea behind your startup?

Eduardo Suárez: Politibot was born as an experiment on Telegram before the Spanish election in June 2016. It was a chatbot curating and creating articles, charts and polling throughout the election campaign. Politibot got almost 9,000 users and generated more than 100,000 interactions with them in just 3 weeks. After that early success, we were selected by Google's DNI Fund to build a Bot Management System. Our platform allows any company to build its own chatbot in an easy way.

 

FMLab.: What observation kicked off your project?

ES: Everybody uses messaging apps every day. They are one of the most precious spaces in your phone: it's where you talk to your friends and family. Being able to share information with your audience in such an intimate place is very valuable for any news outlet. A chatbot allows you to create a very personal relationship with your audience in a messaging app. It also allows you to know your readers much better by asking them questions and to give them news in a personalized way.

 

FMLab.: What is your added value to media companies in content curation/dissemination/monetization?

ES: Our platform allows any company to create a chatbot on Telegram and Facebook Messenger and to publish a daily digest on both messaging apps with just one click. Any daily digest can include links, images, short videos, audios or GIFs.

 

The most valuable features of our platform are analytics and personalization. You can ask your users questions and know in real time what they think about any topic; you can also offer them different content according to their preferences and very soon you could generate quizzes. This will be exciting as a messaging app is the natural environment for a quiz.

FMLab.: How (if at all) could established media companies and innovative startups/projects best collaborate over content creation?

ES: Other companies charge several thousand euros to create a chatbot. We offer any news outlet the chance to build a basic one on a subscription basis and with no extra costs. We are convinced our platform can create value for them and gain the trust of their readers. A chatbot can talk to the audience in a very personal way. It is also a way to reach a younger audience at a moment when every news organization desperately needs to attract that precious group.

 

FMLab.: What is your next big challenge/goal?

ES: We are now working on a few things. We would like to offer our daily digest on Slack, Kik and other platforms. We would also like to improve our natural language processing system.

 

FMLab.: What would Politibot be useful for?

ES: Our platform would be especially useful to cover a specialized topic which is data-rich: an election, the Champions League, Formula One, stocks, the startup scene. On election night last June, for example, we delivered the results on real time. Our users sent us their location and then Politibot sent them back the result at their constituency and at the nation as a whole. This could be easily replicated with things like football results or market value of Wall Street. This is the kind of experience you can’t create with a website. Chatbots offer you a special environment where you should use a different voice. We have experience at that environment and can help you reach the untapped potential of messaging apps. If you’d like to try our platform, just drop as an email to hi@politibot.io.

 

 

Editor’s note: The Future Media Lab. recently teamed up with next media accelerator to publish a compendium of start-ups from across Europe who are working on solving some of the challenges facing the media sector today, particularly around content creation, monetization, dissemination and curation. Many of the start-ups were present to ‘pitch’ their solutions at the Future Media Lab. annual conference , which took place in Brussels on 2 May 2017. A digital version of the compendium is available for download (pdf) here.



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