Amazon is having an enormous influence on the economy through its prominence in online commerce. The company recently held its “Prime Day” holiday, which may have generated up to $2.9 billion in sales. It also previewed how the company plans to utilize Alexa, its voice-powered virtual personal assistant, to define engagement with customers using voice. Echo Dot, a device that connects Alexa to any speaker, was the bestselling item. The rise of voice is disrupting conventional marketing paradigms that treat the search engine results page as a major cornerstone of digital marketing efforts to date, and there have been challenges adapting the traditional models used for AdWords and Facebook Ads to voice search. Google’s equivalent to Alexa, Personal Assistant, was the subject of controversy in March 2017 when new owners of the Google Home smart speaker expressed outrage over receiving advertisements for the opening of a new Beauty and the Beast film.
Currently, the potential routes to reaching a customer via voice seem relatively limited in number. Regardless, marketing departments will have to adapt, as roughly 20% of all searches on Google are made using voice. This trend suggests two major takeaways for digital marketers:
1. The current era of SEO marketing could very well be in its twilight. Strategies that were once dominant now result in negative outcomes. Advertising by hypertargeting search will become a more competitive and less accessible vehicle for marketing as customers increasingly use voice assistants. Advice coming from marketeers attempts to translate traditional strategies to suit the emerging rules for voice, but wisdom emerging from experts will continue to change alongside the rules of the game. Content marketing, however, is a constant. There will always be a benefit to aligning content with customers and catering to target audiences.
2. Data is the new oil–the economy runs on it, and analytics are only going to become more important. Voice search integrates personal data even more than previous mediums, and companies such as Adobe are beginning to focus on gathering data regarding voice communications and interfaces due to their projected proliferation in the years to come.
By using a marketing automation platform, crucial processes that would otherwise be highly labor-intensive can instead be governed by automated flows. This gives users time to support the formation of marketing strategies and goals. By automating the monotonous, marketers can spend their time focusing on what they know is important and on figuring out and adjusting to an ever-changing environment. While suggestions that focus on using old perspectives to evaluate new trends in order to adapt mechanisms to changing times have their use, marketers must have a long-term vision and strategy, or else the individual bits and pieces of a marketing effort, no matter how shiny and modern they may be, will fail to cumulate in the fulfillment of business objectives. In the meantime, a marketing automation platform can help you efficiently profit from the remainder of the SEO/PPC era. Furthermore, automation platforms greatly simplify the process of collecting and organizing data, which will ensure that the user has a database replete with clean and easily managed information!
It is near-certain that the rise of voice search will spur a frenzy to find the next radical marketing strategy that perfectly exploits the unique properties of the medium. For now, Amazon, Google and Apple will likely shape trends and behaviors due to their hardware dominance, software/artificial intelligence expertise and massive data economies of scale; will the rest of the B2B and B2C space stand by idly?