When Google started its experimental voice search service in 2001, everyone was skeptical about its future. But, as of today, it has become a way of life. From finding a restaurant nearby to ordering a toy online, people have started realizing the power of their voice. And, sooner rather than later, voice search will overtake the traditional way of searching for things online as comScore predicts that 50% searches will be voice searches by 2020.
So, who needs to be credited for this unprecedented growth of voice search? Smartphones, smart TVs, smart speakers and a whole bunch of voice-enable connected devices.
Currently, voice search is dominated by the four internet giants of the world, i.e. Google, Amazon, Microsoft, and Apple. Their services like Google Assistant, Alexa, Siri and Cortana are getting smarter day by day and helping users just like a modern-day butler — from setting an agenda for the day to turning the lights on or off. And, the amount of data gathered through these voice searches and commands opens a vast playing field for marketers to reach out to their consumers in a personalized way.
In 2017, some Android users and Google Homeowners reported that their devices were playing ‘Beauty and the Beast’ promos when they inquired about their day. However, this received flak from users.
— brysonmeunier (@brysonmeunier) March 16, 2017
In the case of Amazon, the company has partnered with many service providers to offer branded skills that enable its Alexa devices to perform some specific task. It has roped in a bunch of partners such as CNET for news briefs, Good Housekeeping for tips on housekeeping and Patrón spirits for teaching users how to make cocktails.
According to various reports, Google’s Assistant can pair with more than 10,000 smart home devices whereas Alexa functions with more than 20,000. So, just imagine the number of products that can be promoted on these home assistants. But, if you are planning to promote your product or service in 15-20 second radio like ads, that’s not going to happen. Because the makers of these assistants have been very considerate about adding value to their owners rather than selling stuff.
When we talk about voice searches on web search engines, voice ads are yet to come up. And, the voice result that you currently hear is the metadata of a website. This demands marketers to be more conversational in tone for their websites so that they can be found on voice searches.
But, without a doubt, voice search is going to rock the internet in the coming years. So, to tap users through voice ads, marketers need to find some unconventional ways where they wouldn’t be very intrusive or threatening the privacy of a user. And, this can lead to innovations like web voice assistants which can communicate with home assistants and voice-enabled search engines, interactive voice ads where a user can directly engage with a communication piece and more complex AI learning to better understand the search context of a user.
So, let us know what you think of voice search and how your brand is going to embrace the incoming change?