Consumers Are Talking. Are Brands There to Respond?

By Audacy Team

“Hey Google”, “Alexa”, are consumers really using their smart speakers to engage with brands? Yup, they are. While we’re all accustomed to using smart speakers to play music, give us a weather update or tell a funny joke, smart speaker owners are increasingly turning to their at-home devices to get product recommendations and add to their shopping cart with voice commands.

This leads to a great question for advertisers: When consumers come to visit you via smart speaker – are you there to answer? We’ve found that while early adopters are jumping into the realm of interactive voice, up to 85% of the brands that seek out digital audio solutions don’t yet have a voice presence. These advertisers are missing the opportunity to boost their brand and gain recognition with consumers. According to eMarketer, over 35% of smart speaker users are seeking out product information from Alexa, Google Assistant, and the like.1

There’s a common misconception that if you’re not ready to deliver voice-activated commerce, there’s no real need to develop voice skills. But those forward-looking brands taking the early leap are discovering that brand voice skills are both a relatively easy way to extend consumer engagements, and scalable – with the capacity to start small and expand from there.

What we’re seeing as I work with brands across the country from furniture to auto to insurance, it’s really about taking the first step. The goal, whether you are already ecommerce-enabled or not, is making sure your brand has a voice presence for smart speaker users.

Michael Biemolt
SVP, Sales, Audacy

The first step is typically voice search, as a way to extend typical inquiries into the voice channel. It’s very similar to having a website. If your consumers search online, you want to show up, be found, and deliver the info they need. It’s the same thing with voice. Your consumers are searching via voice, and you need to show up.  

Armed with some experience, brands are then expanding into voice skills, where consumers can engage with your brand into more expansive interactions – Everything from trying a new recipe, finding the nearest fast food drive-through, or more engaging virtual tasting experiences. Successful brands prompt and essentially train consumers to engage via smart speakers by including their “Ask Alexa to..” messaging in ad campaigns.

At Audacy, we practice what we preach – getting in on the fun by helping our listeners get their favorite music, sports and news easily from their smart speakers. 

KYW News Radio

What brands are getting it right? What does the future hold? Listen to our latest webinar to hear what brands like Tide, Coca-Cola and Wild Turkey are doing to activate voice skills for smart speaker audiences, plus growing trends like shoppable audio, personalization and voice engagement metrics.

Want to talk more about reaching your target audience?

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1 eMarketer Voice Assistant and Smart Speaker Users 2020

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