• André Alcantara

Voice tech is building strong bonds between people and companies. But it is not an easy task.

More than never, the consumer's experience with brands had become more intense and decisive when considering any purchase.

According to McKinsey & Company, the quality of this interaction influence to two-thirds of decisions customers make before purchasing anything; prices often drives the rest. That is why a frictionless purchasing experience should be the holy grail not only for growth specialists but also for anyone who wants to drive sales and thrive on digital channels. And you probably have seen a massive amount of tips and content about UX enhancements and A-B tests to make the conversion funnel more effective. Working for many years in experiential marketing and engaging people with brands, and frequently with brands that they initially don't care, I've learned a lot about how to spark that initial curiosity that turns into a little of interest and then in a - "Ok, you got my attention! What do you have for me? ", and it is all about user engagement.

Voice interactions allow us to engage with users

on a two ways conversation with an unprecedented level of practicality

Voice interactions allow us to engage with users on a two ways conversation with an unprecedented level of practicality, something that a few years ago would be unimaginable, and voice tech is just starting to show its potential. The number of homes that have smart speakers is increasing exponentially, and it represents a brand-new market or at least a compelling communication channel between companies and people that it is ready to be reached. However, voice tech also presents challenges that are not easy to overcome and to build an engaging interaction developing an outstanding voice user experience is just one of these challenges.

The game industry has been teaching us how to interact with technology for more than 50 years.

The game industry has been teaching us how to interact with technology for more than 50 years. We started by twisting a button from left to right to play Pong, and now we are smashing mythologic monsters as a God of War by pushing and combining multiple buttons and complex joystick movements as simple as if we have to turn the TV on with remote control. So 350 million registered players on Fortnite is no surprise.

It's a common mistake assuming that people will naturally know how to interact with a "voice app", just because to speak is natural. At CogniVocal, we have been developing our methodology of voice user experience that is being proved effective for engaging users on Pirate Island, our Alexa skill - a voice-game structured in seasons. We noticed that more than two-thirds of players are coming back to play again even after they finish the season and know the story. It is like to watch a movie again that you had watched the week before. We did it starting by the premise that we must teach people how to interact by voice to play the game, so we created our "10 Golden Rules" which outlines how to engage people in voice interactions. We applied it initially for the game, but almost all of it can be used in any voice skill.

  1. Teach the user how to interact and what to do.

  2. Engage them with storytelling and bring them into the story.

  3. Remember, the user is the protagonist; keep them motivated.

  4. The interaction must be a chat, not a monologue.

  5. Allow the user to make choices and surprise them.

  6. Apply the situational design and be prepared for users demands.

  7. Variability is crucial. Avoid repetitive responses at all costs.

  8. Be patient with user failures and help them to overcome it.

  9. Reward the user's achievements. They will be proud of it.

  10. Give the user a motive to come back.

We believe that developing an excellent voice user experience and, of course, by delivering outstanding content that resonates to your audience, any company can reach opportunities to engage with people in a much more in-depth level. If you're going to talk more about how to use voice interactions to reach out to your customers, let's talk about that.

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