Too many companies today are neglecting online messaging platforms, and this is causing them to lose out on precious sales leads and customer engagement.

That was the view of Kester Poh, the co-founder and CEO of AiChat, a B2B company that helps brands to develop chatbot strategies for driving engagement and ROI.

“We believe that every conversation, you can turn it into a conversion,” he said at the recent ASEAN CMO Experience event in Kuala Lumpur.

A 2016 global study by cloud communications company Twilio, for instance, found that nine out of 10 people prefer to have messaging channels to talk to the business, and that consumers in South Korea, India and Singapore picked messaging as their favourite customer service channel.

However, many businesses reach people via phone and email with only 48% equipped to reach consumers through messaging.

“To scale your business, you need both a messaging strategy and an AI strategy to keep up with the growing volume of incoming enquiries on all these messaging platforms,” said Poh.