As human, we like to interact with applications via voice. Because it is easy. This is the main reason behind the increasing use of voice-based applications and digital devices. As the number of voice-enabled applications is increasing, voice is transforming into a common interface. And marketers can’t turn a deaf ear to this change. They can benefit from voice technologies as new channel in their various marketing efforts.
The Use of Voice Technologies in Marketing
Voice technologies ease our lives by offering practical solutions to our daily needs. They answer our questions as if they know us for a long time. They can guess what we need and make recommendations accordingly.
And marketers know that. More marketers are including voice technologies in their marketing efforts to:
- Understand customer needs better
- Offer fast and easier interactions
- Build personalized applications
- Develop a user-oriented image for their brands.
In other words, voice provides vast opportunities for marketers and they find innovative ways of using this technology for better results.
Voice-Oriented Content Marketing for Better Voice Search Results
According to Business to Community, 28% of consumers call a business after finding them from a voice search. This proves that users don’t interact with voice-enabled devices only to complete daily tasks but also search for products and services. Therefore, brands can’t ignore the potential benefits of voice-enabled marketing.
Gartner’s Top 5 Marketing Predictions for 2018 also pointed to the importance of voice search for brands: “Early adopter brands that redesign their websites to support visual and voice search will increase digital commerce revenue by 30% by 2021.”
Voice search offers a new method for finding information or reaching products and services. And marketers are working hard to adapt to this new user habit. More marketers are including voice search optimization in their marketing strategies. Voice search optimization depends on optimizing keywords and keyword phrases for searches using voice commands.
To develop voice-search optimized contents, marketers need to:
- Anticipate questions users might ask and develop content accordingly
- Find out keywords and phrases users prefer while searching via voice commands
- Include these keywords and phrases in their content
- Offer direct answers to users’ questions by creating relevant and useful content
A New Era in Advertising: Voice Ads
The increasing use of voice-enabled smart assistants attracts brands’ attention. They see these devices as effective tools that can convey their messages.
And customers find these ads interesting. According to Adobe’s 2019 Voice Report:
“38% of consumers agreed that voice ads are less intrusive than ads on television, in print, online, and on social media. Additionally, 39% find the ads to be more engaging than those on other channels.”
This is why many brands are collaborating with smart assistants to advertise. For example, detergent brand Tide and whiskey brand Johnnie Walker are among the early adopters of voice ads. These two brands used voice ads by integrating with Amazon Alexa.
It looks like more brands will be using voice ads soon. According to Juniper Research, voice ad spend could reach $19 billion by 2022, although currently there are almost no tangible cases proving the viability of voice-based ads.
What Do Voice Technologies Offer?
Voice technologies and marketing make a great team. What are the basic voice technologies we see most frequently in marketing applications? And what do these voice technologies offer?
Enhanced Experience with NLP-based Conversational Technologies
AI-based natural language processing (NLP) is among the main technologies used in voice-enabled applications and smart assistants. These conversational technologies enable a natural dialog between humans and machines.
Organizations implement these technologies to increase self-service rates through automation. Because they are easy-to-use. Customers can easily complete various tasks by just speaking.
By providing a practical use for customers, NLP-based technologies enhance user experience and offer a smooth customer journey. Customers can interact with these technologies easily by using their own voice. They can speak freely as if they are speaking with a human.
Conversational technologies understand what customers mean by using an intent recognition feature. They might also ask additional questions to better understand customers and to enable a smooth dialog. Besides, these technologies can tailor responses by customer segment. When designed accurately, NLP-based technologies can offer personalized responses based on the user and context of the conversation.
Voice technologies help marketers to:
- Make customers feel that they are being heard and their requests matter
- Create positive, seamless and conversational customer experiences across channels.
- Create space for customers to express themselves in ways that come naturally
- Position the brand as a customer-oriented organization which offers easy-to-use and fast solutions
Marketing and Analytics
Analytics is a key factor for today’s data-driven marketers. To measure and manage their efforts, more marketers are applying for analytics. And they know that customer interactions include invaluable insights.
Voice of the Customer solutions help marketers to uncover these insights by mining customer interactions. These voice-based analytics solutions transform recorded customer-agent calls into text and apply statistical and emotional analysis to them. This technology also covers human-to-machine interactions such as customers calling the call center IVR or texting with chatbots. By applying in-depth data mining analysis, VOC solutions offer comprehensive reports about the interactions. These reports include important details about customer satisfaction, brand image and campaign effectiveness which supports marketers with their strategies and plans.
With the help of Voice of the Customer solutions, marketers can:
- Learn about customers’ preferences.
- Understand if customers are satisfied with products and services.
- Compare their brands’ position among other competitors.
- Measure their campaigns’ effectiveness.
As a natural interface, voice is becoming an increasingly more popular interaction method for customers. Since voice technologies and their applications are developing each day and customers are getting more comfortable with them, more brands are including the voice dimension in their marketing efforts. Voice technologies help marketers to build deeper, more authentic relations with their customers through a natural channel while helping them greatly in their differentiation and personalization efforts.
Author: Hilal Bakanay, Senior Marketing Specialist, Sestek