What’s the difference between a social media bot and a chatbot?

While these terms are sometimes used interchangeably, chatbots are bots that can independently hold a conversation, while social media bots do not have to have that ability. Chatbots are able to respond to user input, but social media bots do not need to “know” how to converse. In fact, many social media bots don’t communicate using language at all; they only perform more simple interactions such as providing ‘follows’ and ‘likes’.

Social media bots also exist on a much larger scale than chatbots, because of the level of human management required. A chatbot often requires a person or even a team of people to maintain its functionality. On the other hand, social media bots are much simpler to manage, and oftentimes hundreds or even thousands of social media bots are managed by a single person.