By now you’ve probably heard about how voice search is the future. And we’re not saying it isn’t, but it’s worth noting that according to a recent study commissioned by the American Marketing Association (AMA) New York, “52% of American consumers have no plans to purchase a smart speaker and 42% have an unfavorable view of the technology’s potential.”
According to MediaPost, “The study also found American consumers are less than keen on the benefits of nine key ad-tech “innovations” -- things like personalized ads, micro-influencers, employee influencers, augmented reality, and IoT-connected home devices -- than U.S. marketing spending would justify.” Meaning, we marketers might be more jazzed than the market will bear.
So how do we add to (and optimize) our arsenal of tactics, while remaining responsible stewards of the marketing dollars entrusted to us?
First, know your audience. Really know them. Tactics that get widgets flying off the shelves for B2C don’t always translate for B2B audience. “By 2020, 30% of all website sessions will be conducted without a screen." Maybe, but does that mean your audience will be searching for your specific business via voice search? Maybe. Work with your Marketing and Sales teams to bridge the gap between reality and assumptions when it comes to where your customers are and how they find you. Then work together to build more accurate and robust customer personas.
Don’t forget to leave your biases at the door, just because it drives you bonkers to be contacted by a business via text doesn’t mean your customers feel the same. But maybe they do, so use quick, short-form pulse surveys to help you more accurately determine the contact preferences of your current contacts.
Even if you’ve determined your audience isn’t ready for voice search (yet), there’s no reason not to cover your bases with the basics:
Use long-tail keywords that align naturally with the way people speak vs. the way they type
Make sure you’re using H-tags correctly
Include lists and bullet points in your text where it makes sense
And for Pete’s sake (because really, poor Pete), measure and optimize your current tactics before adding new ones.