Smart speaker owners want to hear from their favorite brands, but you'll have to get creative to reach them. The smart speaker industry is growing exponentially. TechCrunch reports that 146.9 million devices were sold globally in 2019, which is up 70% from the previous year.
Voice technology is everywhere, and people from all generations are using their hands-free devices to handle everyday tasks.
It wasn’t long ago that smartphones were a luxury item reserved for those on the cutting edge of technology. Today, nearly everyone has one of these devices and they are considered an almost essential part of contemporary life. The same could be happening with voice technology, as more and more people turn to names like Siri, Alexa, and Google Assistant when they have a question or want to find something online.
But what does this mean for the future? Voice assistants are making information more accessible than ever, and it is likely to become an even more significant part of life in the years to come. When people stop physically searching and typing on their devices and instead ask their smart speakers, how will the market adapt?
Here’s what you need to know about the present and future of voice-activated marketing.
Who is using voice?
Voice-operated devices are everywhere. More than half of all American adults use some form of smart assistant and 20% have a smart speaker in their home or office. That cuts across every demographic in the country as Millennials, Gen-Xers, and Baby Boomers all use the technology at similar rates.
Smart speakers, in particular, are becoming more popular as the exclusively voice-controlled technology can be used almost anywhere, hands-free.
Voice technology goes beyond how consumers use it, however, as marketers are now taking advantage of the ease of access these devices provide. Voice assistants offer a massive opportunity for those who are able to use them, and it all starts with identifying where users are deploying the technology.
Where voice assistants are used
We’re seeing voice assistants used everywhere, as people always have their smartphones with them and are putting smart speaks in their homes and offices.
At home, individuals are likely to have smart speakers in their living rooms and bedrooms. They can use these devices to play music, control the lights, make phone calls, and handle many everyday tasks.
In the office, smart speakers are becoming more popular because they provide a hands-free method of communication. Once you have the device set-up, you can look-up contacts, make phone calls, place orders, and get weather forecasts without having to pick-up your device.
Commuters commonly use voice technology in their cars, as well, since it allows them to send emails or texts, make phone calls, or access information without having to grab their phones physically. Many states have laws outlawing the use of phones while driving, so it makes sense that hands-free communication is becoming popular.
You might be wondering how people are actually using this technology in their everyday lives. The truth is they’re using it everywhere.
Research from Voicebot.ai found that about 83% of people use voice search to answer a question, while 70% get directions, 66% call friends, 57% send emails or texts, and 55% locate restaurants. Other common uses include researching products before buying and setting alarms or timers.
While only a small segment of society uses their voice-activated devices daily for these tasks, their usage is increasing every year. That trend will only get more significant as the technology becomes more accessible.
In fact, it is estimated that 50% of all web searches will be done by voice by 2020. That’s a massive piece of the pie, and smart marketers must find a way to take advantage. Current voice technology is good at helping users find information, but it hasn’t been able to let them directly act on it, until now.
The future of voice
As voice becomes more prevalent, marketers are looking for ways to gain a larger share of the conversation. For example, writing marketing content in a conversational manner that mimics how consumers talk can make it easier for voice searchers to find your product.
Another area where voice is improving is the ability to empower customers with a direct, Voice Activated Call to Action (VACTA) they can engage through the smart assistant.
When consumers are presented with an offline advertisement, it can be hard for them to act on it immediately. And whenever there’s a delay between an ad and its conversion, prospects may forget to take action. One example is a billboard: Potential customers who find the ad intriguing may forget they meant to follow up before they get the chance to search for it on a device.
Respond Fast links offline marketing with online objectives by providing consumers a chance to immediately follow-up on advertisements and send themselves additional information through their voice-activated devices.
When presented with an offline offer, the customer can launch Respond Fast through their smart speaker to get a text with a link to their smartphone — they don’t have to remember to search for it later. The end result is a higher conversion rate for TV, radio, newspaper, direct mail, and other offline advertisements.
Contact Respond Fast for more information on this exciting marketing technology.