Note for Terminus Customers:

The features discussed in this article represent enhancements that were made to existing functionality in the Terminus Chat Experiences product, namely to ChatBots and Chat Workflows, as of our February 2021 product release. Chat Experiences users that had access to the Terminus platform prior to 2/15/21 have maintained access to both the ChatBots and Workflows pages in the Chat interface, and will also have access to the new Playbooks interface. Customers that were onboarded after 2/15/21 will only have access to the new Playbooks page.

Playbooks for Chat Experiences
 allow Terminus users to build sophisticated, highly engaging chat workflows in one seamless interface. Playbooks consist of two main elements: Targeting rules, and Chatbots. Targeting rules are used to determine when and where the Chatbot should be displayed, while the Chatbot itself determines what actions should be deployed during a chat experience.

The Chatbot component of Playbooks are made up of a sequence or actions, or “plays”, that are taken based on a visitor’s known attributes or behaviors. In this article, we’ll review the different types of plays that can be created, and best practices for utilizing them when creating chat Playbooks.

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Standard Plays

A standard play presents the visitor with a message (usually a question), and then provides a list of predefined options, or actions, for them to choose from.

For example, if a visitor responded to the initial greeting with “I’m a customer,” you might create a follow-up play to get more information about what they need help with, (“I’d like to speak to my Customer Success Manager” or “I need to contact Support”).

Play Settings

To add a new answer options, select the “Add+” button. For each option, the following settings will be available:

  • Visitor Answer Option
  • Bot Response (Optional): Automated response based on the option selected
  • Next Play: Based on the visitor’s selection, what action should be taken next
  • Qualify Visitor (Optional): Visitor rating, based on the selected option (For example: If a “Schedule a demo” or “Speak to a sales rep” option is selected, you may automatically qualify the visitor as “warm” or “hot”)
  • Tags (Optional) 
  • Set Hidden Data Element Value(s) (Optional)

Once you’ve configured your message, you’ll be asked to input one, or multiple, visitor answer options.

Selecting the “Prevent Visitor Input” checkbox will prevent the user from submitting free text responses, and will force them to choose from a predetermined list of options to proceed.

Play Best Practices

It is recommended to have Visitor Answer Options that cover a wide range of requests. Most commonly, Chat users will have Plays that will route to sales / demo requests, customer support, and additional information about your product offering.


A Greeting is a standard play that will be included in every Playbook. A Greeting will determine the first thing a visitor sees when they decide to engage with a chat experience. Greetings will consist of:

  • An initial welcome message
  • Visitor answer options

Play Settings

The initial greeting message can be a combination of text, emojis and/or symbols, and tokens. For more information on tokenization, check out this article. Play settings for a greeting will mirror the settings for a standard play.

Play Best Practices

Provide visitors with no more than 5 options for navigating your bot. More than 5 increases confusion, and visitor desire to abandon the chat.


Data Ask Plays

With Data Ask plays, users can use Data Asks to gather more information from the user relevant to their end goals. For example, if a visitor selected an option that indicated that they were considering moving from their current service provider, you might want to collect information on which provider they’re currently working with to better tailor your conversation. Or, if a visitor is a customer, you might ask for their customer or account ID.

Play Settings

When creating a Data Ask play, users have the option to:

For each option, you can also include a Message Header. You also have two options for action, based on the behavior of the visitor:

  • Response Action: Based on what action the visitor takes, users can either end the chat, or trigger another play.
  • Canceled Action: Provides the visitor the ability to decline a data ask should they choose to not answer the question. The Cancelled Action allows you to specify what the next step is in the Playbook and where to direct the visitor.

Play Best Practices

Use Data Asks throughout the chat conversation to gradually gather the information you need; asking for too much information up front can lead to a higher abandonment rate of chats.


Routing Plays

Routing plays allow users to route chat visitors to specific team members or Routing Groups for direct interaction, based on the visitor’s behavior, or their known information. For example, if a visitor requested to schedule a demo, you might direct them to your sales team, or if someone requested technical assistance, you might route them to support.

Play Settings

You can set one, or multiple, targets in a routing play. The Default Target option can be used to automatically direct a user from a previous play. If you create a custom play in addition to a default play, the system will apply the rules of the default play in the event the criteria set in any custom play does not apply to the visitor.

For example, you may want to automatically route anyone that requests a demo or a meeting to your sales team. However, if a visitor from a company with over 1,000 employees requests a demo, (as identified by a Data Ask / Data Element / Visitor Info), you may want to route them to your Enterprise sales team, specifically.

When creating a custom routing target, you’ll have the option to set additional conditions for routing, based on:

  • Page Title
  • Page URL
  • UTM
  • Visitor Location
  • Visitor Referrer
  • Page Scrolled
  • Time Passed
  • Page Focus (If the visitor’s mouse leaves the page area, or if their mouse comes back into view)
  • User Device
  • Time Range
  • Saved Visitor Info (Email, Name, Company, etc.)
  • Data Ask / Data Element

Based on the conditions you set, you can then determine which routing group to send the visitor to, and include an optional reply before routing occurs.

In the event that no one is available, or the routing fails to connect, you have the option to either end the chat, or run another play.

Play Best Practices

Routing rules have almost endless possibilities, but it’s a best practice to set up Routing Rules that cover the majority of all use cases.  Most importantly, how to route inbound leads to the appropriate channels.  Other common Routing Rules include targeting based on the page(s) being viewed and UTM parameters.


Logic Plays

Logic plays allow users to create bot paths that are dictated by any knowledge the bot has at the time the play is called. These paths can be determined based on the page being visited, the time of day, visitor information collected, UTM parameters presented, etc.

Play Settings

The settings for a Logic play will look similar to a Routing play. The difference is, instead of being able to set conditions for routing the visitor to a specific group, you can set conditions to trigger additional plays.

For example, if someone engages with a chat on your pricing page, you might route them to a Data Ask play to collect more information for qualification.

Within a logic play, you also have the option to set a visitor qualification rating, apply tags, and set Data Elements.

Play Best Practices

Similar to Routing Plays, Logic Plays create bot paths based on information present.  Logic Plays are useful for qualifying leads based on various data elements that better qualify or disqualify visitors.  Logic Plays are also useful for changing the bot responses based on the time of day, depending on when team members are available to chat or not.


Concluding Play

By default, all Playbooks will also have a concluding play. A concluding play is a type of routing play that allows you to conditionalize what happens at the end of a Playbook. For example, instead of pushing all bot traffic to your CRM, you can select to push only chat data that meets certain criteria. All concluding plays will have a default workflow, but additional workflows can also be added.

Play Settings

The following settings for concluding plays will be available:

  • End Message (Optional): A message that should be displayed when the chat conversation is complete
  • End Tooltip (Optional): The end tooltip is usually used to capture a visitor’s attempt to close the chat. This interruption in standard behavior is useful for displaying a survey, such as “How was this chat?” The tooltip is the verbiage shown at the top of the engagement window.
  • Ask Visitor (Optional): Option to collect additional information from the visitor, or take additional action at the conclusion of the conversation, including:
  • Qualify Visitor (Optional)
  • Apply Tags (Optional)
  • Set a Data Element (Optional)
  • Send Email (Optional): A single email address can be emailed at the conclusion of a chat. We recommend, if multiple sources should be notified, to make that address an alias and manage that routing within your email settings. The email address can be specified within each target.
  • Push to Salesforce (Optional): Option to create a new lead/contact record in Salesforce. This push will automatically compare the email address to records in SFDC to prevent adding duplicates and instead append this chat activity to the existing record. The information that can be sent to Salesforce includes:
    • Whether they should be added as a Lead or Contact record
    • Owner
    • Campaign
  • Push to Marketo (Optional): Push chat details to Marketo, including creating new leads.
  • Push to Outreach (Optional): Push chat details to Outreach, including creating new leads.

Play Best Practices

When configuring a concluding play, include an End Message to thank visitors for their interest and engagement.

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