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MMA & Isobar India launch ‘The Voice Playbook'

The playbook aims to unfold the potential impact of voice on the global and Indian media and marketing industry. It highlights insights that will help marketers win with voice and enhance their brand-customer journey

MMA & Isobar, the digital agency from the house of dentsu international, have launched ‘The Voice Playbook’ for India.

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The playbook aims to unfold the potential impact of voice on the global and Indian media and marketing industry. It highlights insights that will help marketers win with voice and enhance their brand-customer journey. 'The Voice Playbook' is powered by Slang Labs.

The key focus areas of ‘The Voice Playbook’ are:

  1. Post-pandemic, human behaviour has shifted to more contactless experiences serving to grow the need for voice technology in both its pace and popularity. Soon, consumers will have a voice option at self-checkout counters, ATMs, automobiles, elevators and anywhere else touch is currently needed.
  2. Globally, over 500 million people use Google Assistant every month, with Hindi second only to English as the most commonly used language.
  3. The integration of Indian languages in voice assistants has been the strongest growth driver for the tech across the six-to-sixty age spectrum and as the majority of Indians are multilingual, they find voice three times faster than typing. During the 2019 cricket season, Google Assistant received over 100 million cricket queries as people asked for news and live score updates. This means people of all ages and geographies can engage with voice-enabled technology more easily because it mimics normal conversation.
  4. Voice search queries in India are growing at 270% per year. India is already a large video-first internet market and with the demographics and large scale, smartphone adoption, will become the world's first / largest voice-first internet.
  5. Voice technology is playing a pivotal role in fuelling aided commerce growth as 82% of smartphone users are using voice-activated technology.
  6. Growing adoption of voice technology in shopping online will leave voice assistant to suggest products to buy and this can affect people’s connection with brands as only convenience or a brand’s ‘top of mind’ will play a bigger role in making a choice. Hence, customer experience will once and for all overtake social media presence or general marketing.
  7. Voice assistance has been continually refined to be more realistic and human-like. Alexa just got its first celebrity voice in India. Brands are focusing a lot on the voice of the voice assistant as the majority of the respondents (86%) said developing a brand’s voice personality is extremely important.
  8. We are already anticipating the emergence of voice ad exchanges, where advertisers will bid to get their brands to the top spot. The first execution of this solution has just hit the market: is the first company to serve ‘voice ads that people can speak with’.

The report: 

Shamsuddin Jasani

Shamsuddin Jasani, Group MD, Isobar, South Asia, said, "Voice technology will become the next great disruptor and India as a market is very receptive to Voice as a medium and Isobar is extremely excited to help brands ride on this new wave. This playbook gives marketers an excellent opportunity to understand how to use voice as a medium/platform to engage with their consumers. By 2021, it’s estimated that 72% of internet users in India will prefer to use a language other than English, and voice will help bridge that language gap. Just like brands needed an internet strategy in the ’90s, a search strategy in 2000, and a mobile strategy in 2010, we at Isobar believe now brands need a voice strategy.”

Gopa Kumar

Gopa Kumar, COO, Isobar India, added, "We firmly believe that voice technology will become the next great disruptor and India as a market is very receptive to voice as a medium. We are already seeing in India that people are skipping typing and moving to voice and are completely at ease with the same. This gives marketers an excellent opportunity to use voice as a medium/platform to engage with their customers. While its use is becoming widespread and consumers are very receptive to it, there is still very less information on how voice tech will affect the various digital marketing platforms or the marketing mix. This playbook in association with MMA aims to decode the how and simplify it, this playbook will help you know about voice technology and will aid in not only being prepared but to position yourself or your brand ahead of the curve."

Moneka Khurana

Moneka Khurana, Country Head, MMA India, said, “In post-pandemic times, contactless experiences, increased voice searches, consumption of vernacular languages, conversational commerce are riding the wave, making voice tech integral to the entire value chain. Hence, marketers recognise the potential of voice with MMA being the first trade body to take the lead to shape the future of voice in collaboration with our voice & audio council enabling ongoing evangelism and education. The voice playbook would act as a toolkit to empower and enable the marketer.” 

Kumar Rangarajan

Kumar Rangarajan, Co-founder and Obsessive Dictator, Slang Labs, said, “When Slang Labs started about four years ago with the intent of empowering the digitally disenfranchised segments of the society to get the same kind of services that the digital-savvy people could, most of the marketing was still focused on the digital-savvy and majorly urban population of India. Post-Covid, even the non-digital savvy populations in urban and rural areas are getting on board the digital highway. But the brands are unable to capture the full potential of this huge market of next billion users. This is where we see Voice Playbook 2021 enabling marketers to understand the key challenges faced by this huge untapped market and engage them on their own terms using voice as the ‘bridge to Bharat’.”

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