The London Marathon has launched its latest digital initiative, The Virgin Money London Marathon ChatBot.

In a first for a major marathon, the Chatbot has been created using advanced technology and is able to answer questions about this year’s race and give advice to runners and spectators ahead of the 2018 Virgin Money London Marathon.

Accessed through Facebook Messenger, the Chatbot is the latest development in customer service allowing runners or spectators to get instant answers to their Virgin Money London Marathon questions any time of day or night. In its first week the Chatbot sent more than 10,000 messages.

“We are always looking for new ways to communicate with our runners and spectators” said Hugh Brasher, Event Director. “The Virgin Money London Marathon ChatBot is the first for a major marathon and gives our followers anywhere in the world the ability to get answers to questions 24 hours a day and seven days a week.

“Social media is now the preferred method for our runners and spectators to communicate and engage with us. That might be by asking a question about their start time or finding out more about the elite runners taking part in this year’s race. The Chatbot is a really exciting way we can improve that experience and deliver them more content.”

The Virgin Money London Marathon Chatbot has been developed using similar technology to that used by Transport for London, to support the thousands of passenger enquiries they get every day.

You can click here to get started or scan the image below using the camera within Facebook Messenger. Just line up the image and tap the middle of the screen.