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Trending: The Rise of The Fashbot

Forget crushed velvet, posh puffas and brocade, this season's hottest new trend is the chatbot.

Following on from the success of Tommy Hilfiger's foray into “see-now-buy-now” fashion, Burberry partnered with Facebook to launch a chatbot of its own.

Known for being an early adopter when it comes to social media, Burberry knows all to well that it's better to build an audience early than get left behind. Back in 2015 Burberry became the first brand to stream its London Fashion Week show live on Snapchat and earlier this year, launched a dedicated Beauty board on Pinterest.

Although chatbots have been around for some time now, its designers like Tommy Hilfiger and Burberry that have transformed this medium into an innovate new way to shop. By using chatbots to answer customer's questions, brands can provide a more immersive and responsive online experience.

To use a bot, users simply head to a brand's Facebook page and click the messenger icon or scan the relevant QR code. Just like regular bots, 'fashbots' prompt users to follow a series of multiple-choice questions encouraging them to say what they’d like to see - which is invaluable to brands.

Both brands have used the platform to provide users with exclusive behind-the-scenes content and fun insights into new their collections, as well as an engaging new way for users to shop items directly from the runway.

“The changes we are making will allow us to build a closer connection between the experience that we create with our runway shows and the moment when people can physically explore the collections for themselves. This is the latest step in a creative process that will continue to evolve,” said Burberry chief creative and chief executive officer, Christopher Bailey.

As more and more brands join the consumer conversation could ‘bot shops’ become the new App Store?

Words: Dan Flay

Image via Burberry

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