Earlier this year Acquisio uncovered new information about how marketers can make use of #voicesearch in our Digital Predictions Webinar and follow up eBook…we even discussed it briefly in a blog post. The voice search predictions and followup discussion were interesting; however, an overarching theme was that despite the increase in voice search popularity from users, marketers have no clear road map on how to advertise through this channel.
“So far no one has branded themselves as a voice search marketer, but their day may come. Since the two biggest search engines haven’t figured out how to properly monetize and implement voice search advertising, marketers aren’t in the best position. Yet it ultimately falls on the laps of marketers to crack the voice-search code for their clients. Marketers need to voice their concerns to search engines. If search engines want agencies and businesses to invest in search marketing, they need to support us to understand how our clients behave with voice searches.” – Excerpt from our Voice Search Blog Post
Following our blog post, I quickly tweeted this:
Following my Tweet Voiceter Pro reached out to me on Twitter:
Since I absolutely couldn’t resist another piece of the voice search puzzle, I followed up with Voiceter Pro and asked if we could feature a short interview with them on our blog. Miguel Berger, the CEO of Voiceter Pro, was kind enough to share his insights about how they are using voice search for advertising in the real estate industry and beyond.
Interview with Voiceter Pro
What is Voiceter Pro?
Voiceter Pro, LLC. is a conversational search company that will bring companies and consumers together through meaningful conversations with Amazon’s Alexa-powered devices, Google Home as well as other emerging AI platforms.
How is Voiceter Pro offering advertisements to businesses hoping to target voice searchers?
The Voiceter Pro team has a deep understanding of the real estate industry and is using their contacts to educate brokers, agents and multiple listing executives about the future of real estate voice search. Since our launch in December, we have partnered with several real estate companies across the country and with more in the pipeline.
I enjoy having conversations with my peers and watching their excitement grow when they start thinking about how voice search can help their business.
As we continue to make inroads in the real estate industry, we expect to expand to other vertical markets where consumers could have a conversation with Alexa or Google that guides them to the product or service that best meets their needs.
Is Voiceter Pro limited to the real estate market?
This sale and lead generation tool has applicability in any business model that requires consumers to filter through product choices to arrive at the product or service they want.
How does Alexa give voice searchers who are looking to buy a home results for your clients over organic search results?
In order to give consumers optimal results and to ensure that we are following the multiple listing service rules that our clients must abide by, we do not weigh results to favor client’s listings. The benefit to our clients is that the voice search includes their brand in the messaging. For example: “This search was brought to you by Better Homes and Gardens Tech Valley.” Also, the results email is branded to our clients. The built in brand advertising opportunities cast our clients as leading edge, technologically savvy real estate professionals – something that is desired by many of today’s buyers and sellers.
When a consumer is looking to buy a home and they use our Real Estate (Amazon and soon Cortana) and Real Estate Search (Google Home) apps, the brand messaging will create an opportunity for them to engage with our clients. Our clients serve both buyers and sellers. They work the market and sell properties they’ve listed, but also frequently represent buyers of other brokers’ listings. Voiceter Pro provides a marketing tool to benefit sellers and an engagement opportunity with potential buyers.
Are there any limitations to Voiceter Pro that marketers should be aware of?
Our conversational search applications work on the two leading, in-home platforms and we intend to expand to additional platforms as they come online. So, marketers would not be limited to a single platform.
How does Voiceter Pro get around complications with accents or words used across languages, like brands (ie. Yves Saint Laurent)?
I think most of us would agree that voice recognition continues to evolve and improve. Accents can sometimes be difficult whether you’re speaking to Alexa, Google Home, Cortana or Siri. We do have some error correction built into our applications to help with these situations.
How do you think voice search will evolve in the next 5 years?
Voice search will become ubiquitous as microphones and language processing become more advanced and a commonplace tool in our lives. I think voice search is just a small piece of the pie – a starting point. Voice interaction and adding personality to these assistants will be an important part of the evolution. AI-assistants will do more than just accept commands; they will intelligently respond to statements and questions. They will keep the conversation going, which will be an important part of the advanced apps of the future.
Voice Search Starting to Take Shape
It is interesting to see that voice search advertising is already available in the real estate market, a place where presumably images would be essential. If voice search advertising is working in this market, then applications for other product-driven sectors are likely to takeoff as well, as Miguel points out.
Business Insider released a story this week discussing how “Users of Amazon’s Echo smart speaker will soon hear advertisements in Alexa skills like music streaming and news updates, thanks to a new platform called Sponsored Messages.” While Voiceter Pro takes more of a native-ad approach for their clients, Sponsored Messages seem more intrusive. More voice search advertising formats are likely to emerge as voice search technology evolves as well.
Despite the fact that voice search poses a unique opportunity for marketers because of the context a voice can provide, as Matt Van Wagner explains, it still has some missing elements for advertisers. How will Google or Bing decide which advertisements to play for voice searchers in which order. Will the future of voice search rely on visuals like the new Echo Show or will it remain a purely audible experience? How will an audio-based technology evolve to help people make visual decisions? The answers to these questions are just starting to take shape.