Like other new technology, brand managers need a business case for including Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant into their customer engagement plans. This article will provide voice assistant technology use cases and tips on how brands can introduce voice-first user experiences to consumers.
Be where your customers are.
Consumers are ahead of brands in voice technology. According to emarketer (May 2019) 111.8 million people (about 1/3 of the US population) use at least one voice assistant (Amazon Alexa, Apple Siri, Google Assistant) on at least one device (smart speaker, mobile phone). More important is the frequency of use with 47% of smart device owners reporting they use their virtual assistants daily (Voicebot.ai June 2019).
Business case: Be where your customers are. Ask your favorite voice assistant about your brand? Do you like the response? Play the response in a conference room and be prepared with a voice tech strategy.
Use case: Engage customers by promoting your voice assistant app across all marketing channels. No one has shared an email experience in years, but they’ll share an enjoyable voice technology experience – perhaps a story that jumps from one media channel to another, with the ending on voice assistants.
Tip: Designing a voice app is not as easy as it sounds due to the emerging nature of natural language processing technology. Work with voice assistant experts, or you may go viral in an unexpected way.
Be top of mind to reach new customers.
Can your brand answer a “How…?” or “What…?” question? If customers are asking these questions and your brand is not the answer, what brand is?
You will see a shift in the way consumers get answers. People won’t be typing on keyboards as they do now. They want instant answers as they are driving, walking down the street, or multi-tasking at home.
Think of voice apps today like the beginning of web sites. Brands who started with brochureware outpaced those who thought web sites were a fad. When e-commerce became popular, brands with early web sites were far ahead in expertise.
Business case: Be top of mind, literally. Don’t lose customers to your competitors. Since it’s early in voice, you can win both the hearts and minds of your potential and current customers -- but only if they get your brand as an answer when they ask their favorite voice assistant.
Use case: Cross-promote an engaging “how to” voice assistant app that is useful and timely – such as the Butterball app for the November and December holidays.
Tip: Create a series of these “helpful” voice apps to rotate throughout the year.
Be ready for 2020.
The year 2020 is expected to be the year of the “consumerization of voice technology.” The 2019 holiday season will introduce many more people to voice-enabled devices – from smart speakers to wearables to devices for vehicles.
Be where your customers are and be top of mind. Most importantly, give them an engaging experience with your brand.
To maximize the ROI /ROAS on your voice tech budget, it’s important to have a feasible virtual assistant technology strategy that provides an opportunity to gradually introduce the idea and to monetize voice assistant apps.