Building Profitable Enterprise Bots

In the fourth panel of Botness Enterprise, 5 more bot experts talked through how to successfully build profitable enterprise bots.

Dan Manian, CEO of Donut, explained that they don’t think of themselves as being in the bot business – they’re in the business of helping teams connect.

He sees the first step to having a profitable business as having a useful set of tools, and stronger social connections across companies drive productivity and increase retention.

Elias Torres, CTO of Drift, brought up some great points. When building an enterprise bot, think about how you’re going to scale. And, are you a feature or a complete solution? You definitely want to be a complete solution.

It’s easy to build one dialogue, but you have to do a lot of building. Drift started as a human driven messaging platform, then they started building bots – a whole suite of them! Identity bot, routing bot, lead bot, meeting bot, support bot.

Last note from Elias – APIs need to be open to integration, not a silo!

Rabi Gupta, CEO of Evabot, built a bot that helps thank and reward with personalized products instead of gift cards or virtual cash. Evabot chats with the receiver and uses that to customize the gift. He describes their process as trigger, action, investment, and reward.

Roy Pereira, CEO of, called it out: will the real profitable bot please stand up?


Profitable bots don’t exist yet – and Roy doesn’t consider to be a bot company, but an enterprise company. (See a theme? It’s helpful to be a company that builds a bot for their solution!)

This early on, you’re basically paying to educate potential consumers.

Chris Buttenham, CEO of Obie, pointed out that people don’t want to buy more software. Obie allows people to access information from a place they already occupy – a chat interface fit their solution way better.

It’s never too early to think of a pricing model. Having a public pricing model can offer learning opportunities! Don’t think of your bot as an add-on technology, but an enterprise solution, and price accordingly.

Thanks, everyone, for a thoughtful panel!

We covered the bot ecosystem at SXSW 2017 – catch up on our posts here, or follow us on Twitter for more Botness Enterprise goodness!


About Cassie Bannister

Director of Marketing for I edit all the things for (and sometimes write them, too.)