How Voice-Activated CTAs Rev Up Offline Response, Attribution
When radio came along, it was a powerful complement to such visual media as print. Now, smart speaker-driven, voice-activated technologies are driving us full circle, serving as a powerful auditory complement to print, TV, billboards, and other visual media. How can direct marketers and others best take advantage of this new call-to-action channel?
One option is voice response technology using smart speakers, which we think can revolutionize CTAs across such offline channels as direct mail, labels and packaging, TV, radio and podcasts. Besides providing a new avenue for CTA offer responses, voice response can connect prospects and customers with information sites, surveys, reviews, and other interactive platforms — and help track campaign attribution.
What I mean by a cross-channel CTA is something like this on a printed piece, displayed on TV, or voiced on radio:
To get your FREE APP download, just tell your smart speaker "Launch Respond Fast"and use phrase "FREE App"
Frictionless and Far-Reaching
Smart speaker-savvy consumers already use Google and Alexa as an easy way to ask questions and get information about everything from TV show cast members to the weather. Increasingly, smart speakers are becoming a frictionless way to connect, communicate, and respond to CTAs.
Calling out to a smart speaker can be easier for consumers than searching by phone or on a website. Rather than look up when a movie was made, they call out to Alexa or Google for the answer. When looking for a word definition or synonym, consumers can call it out instead of looking it up.
Smart speakers are driving innovative and effective CTA voice response programs, and more. Voice response can be used in conjunction with visual CTAs to compare, augment response, and gauge overall interest. Marketers can leverage voice response for effective campaigns and get valuable feedback about what prospects and customers most resonate with in CTA programs.
If Marketers Set Up Voice-Activated CTA Tech
To get started, a responder provides a unique phrase or code printed or announced on offline advertising media. These include direct mail, print ads, collateral pieces, TV/radio spots, billboards, signage, and product labels/packaging. Consumers are prompted to provide their phrase or code tied to a campaign or prospect outreach. Relevant marketing messaging and CTAs follow.
A multichannel campaign featuring TV, radio, direct mail, and print ads can effectively incorporate a unique voice activated code into each of its avenues. Depending on the type of interaction, the smart speaker can fulfill the request, or get information to follow up through phone, shipping, or digital communication (e.g., text, email, website).
When setting up a voice-activated, smart speaker-driven campaign, marketers can use the tech's dashboard that often enables users to create the offer, decide the delivery mechanism, launch, analyze results, and refine/improve subsequent efforts.
Voice-Activated Technology Is in the Conversation
Smart speaker-driven voice response is rapidly becoming a major player in the CTA arena. In some cases, it’s replacing visits to websites. A Capgemini Digital Transformation Institute study in 2018 projected that voice assistants would revolutionize e-commerce. The study notes that already 24% of respondents preferred a voice assistant to visiting a website, and anticipates an adoption rate of 40% within a couple years.
By next year, 50% of all searches will be voice-based, according to a Forbes report entitled, “Okay, Google, Will Voice Be The Future Of Search?”
A March 2019 Techcrunch.com report speaks to the smart speaker boom. In the US, the number of owners grew 40% over 2018, reaching 26.2% of the U.S. adult population. Another 2019 Techcrunch report, citing global growth, notes that smart speaker growth from 2018 to this year will be “82.4%, from 114 million units in 2018 to 207.9 million in 2019.”
Can You Hear Me Now?
Voice-response technology is impacting the CTA world in a big way. In the healthcare realm, the National Institutes of Health cites “interactive voice response” as a boon to healthcare behaviors. In its conclusion, the report notes, “IVR-based interventions appear promising in changing specific health behaviours, such as medication adherence and physical activity.”
Imagine how voice-activated technology can work with such iconic marketing CTAs as Nike's “Just Do It,”
Burger King's “Have It Your Way,” or even Nancy Reagan’s anti-drug slogan, “Just say no.” Powerful CTAs that evoke emotion, offer exclusivity, impart urgency, convey strong meaning, and offer discounts and freebies all can be used very effectively in a voice-activated campaign.
Voice-activated marketing driven by smart speakers is becoming the mainstream way to address CTAs. Its future is limited only by consumer adoption of the technology, and imagination.