Interactive voice ads are gaining popularity in the audio marketing field and music-streaming platforms. Major players including Amazon, Pandora, Spotify, and NBCUniversal have been experimenting with this format where a listener verbally interacts with ad content. Using voice recognition software to analyze vocal feedback, the platform can trigger a follow-up message based on the listener’s response.
Brands have been employing interactive voice ads in different ways in recent years, with Spotify, Amazon, and Pandora all dipping their toes into the space. Pandora reported positive feedback from their beta version stating that 47% of users said they either liked or loved the concept of responding with their voice and 72% of the users said they found the ad format easy to engage with. The format has also crossed into TV with NBCUniversal’s Peacock streaming service that allows viewers to interact with commercials by speaking into their remote.
While this new ad format is still in its infancy, it may not be too long until the average listener chats with advertisers on a regular basis.
How Interactive Voice Ads Work
Developed by Instreamatic, a startup specializing in artificial intelligence-driven “dialogue advertising,” interactive ads function essentially the same: a voice over names the brand, then informs the listener that they can verbally interact with the ad. The voice over then teases some information that’s unlocked only through a verbal “yes.”
So far, most interactive ads only ask a yes or no question, but it’s capable of so much more. With artificial intelligence similar to Amazon’s Alexa, the technology gets better every day at knowing what words mean, and its capabilities extend to holding back-and-forth conversations.
Why Use Interactive Voice Ads?
While brands continue to experiment with interactive voice ads, several benefits have already become apparent.
- Better engagement metrics. Interactive voice ads have allowed for new metrics that solve engagement measurement issues faced by passive advertisement. A “say-through rate” can capture verbal engagement which helps advertisers reach consumers in a new way and measure the effectiveness of that reach. But even more intriguing is the ability to learn about the listeners who give a negative verbal response. For the first time, brands are able to discover the exact reason why a listener finds an ad irrelevant. This allows marketers to build brand relationships and re-engage listeners with tailored content based on the history of their responses.
- Improved listener experience. Interactive voice ads can also be a better experience for listeners who might prefer to talk and have a direct line of communication to advertisers. Instreamatic case studies have shown that listeners found the interactive ads to be more meaningful and memorable when compared with equivalent passive audio ads.
- Reduced friction. An average listener is typically multitasking when listening to music or a podcast and the app window is usually out of view. Being asked to verbally engage with an ad requires a listener to stop what they’re doing and pay attention, fighting against friction.
Case Studies from the Field
Case studies from dialogue advertising campaigns involving major brands have proven that the technology is capable of delivering brand engagement experiences that truly engage and interest readers. Here are just a few recent campaigns.
- Pandora Pandora has been testing interactive ads with some of its mobile users who use their smart voice assistant and is piloting this functionality with some of today’s most recognizable brands such as Doritos, Nestle, Turner Broadcasting, and many more. This accomplishment represents a first-of-its-kind approach to voice-enabled audio with a screenless, voice-first experience.
- Volkswagen Instreamatic worked with Volkswagen on their voice ad campaign for the Caravelle Multivan model, which subsequently won the “The Golden Speedometer” PHD Innovation Award. The campaign’s goals were to engage users in a dialogue with the brand, to build awareness, and to drive users to a specific landing page.
- Mazda With similar goals as the Volkswagen campaign, Mazda ran a voice dialogue marketing campaign that included a continuous dialogue with each listener, which resulted in a positive change of heart by 3.29% of the users who initially showed no interest in the first communication from the brand.
The voice-based ad market will only grow in the coming years based on the increase of consumer demand for audio and video content. The prevalence of smart devices delivering that content on-demand also continues to accelerate so businesses should take the time to learn more about interactive voice ads and how it can help you stay competitive.
Given the complexity of interactive ads, businesses should tread thoughtfully through the implementation of this framework. Along the way, experienced guidance is invaluable. AscentCore has a deep understanding of AI and empowers companies to scale, disrupt, and accelerate. Get in touch with us today to see how we can help with AI services.