What is the impact of voice search on your branding strategies? The answer is: tremendous. Your whole strategy for promoting and modeling your brand image must take into account this new way of looking for information, products and services.
How Powerful Is the Voice Search Trend?
Without exaggerating, voice search is the new mobile. Just remember how much everything changed in doing business after mobile phones and mobile internet became the norm. The same thing is happening right now with various digital assistants helping people access information without typing.
According to a survey conducted by Perficient Digital, people use voice search in the following situations:
- At home, alone or with friends
- At the office alone or with coworkers
- In restaurants with friends
- At parties.
As you can note from these preferences, people use voice search both for professional and personal reasons. Thus, this new way of searching the internet will affect not only B2C companies, but the B2B world, as well.
What Can You Do to Make Your Brand Voice Search Friendly?
The first thing you must remember when adapting your branding strategy to voice search is that people use different words and phrases when speaking and when typing. A voice search sounds more like a regular conversation. When typing, people tend to use only a few basic keywords.
Having made this basic prerequisite clear, here are a few ways that will help your brand survive the voice search revolution:
1. Make Sure Your Brand Name Is Easily Found with Voice Search
Every company tries to find a brand name that sounds unique and memorable. In this quest, many brands contain numbers, special symbols (like @ instead of a, for instance) and original spelling. This is fine with written search and SEO. But what happens when clients try to pronounce your brand name? Will they get it right? And will digital assistants make a perfect match between what the user said and your brand name.
As a simple instance, years ago a freelance designer created a website titled after his own name – MikeRoweSoft. It sounded extremely familiar like a very well known corporation (which actually sued the designer for copyright infringement). If this situation happened today, a voice search assistant would definitely have trouble picking the right answer.
Moral of the story: make sure your brand name is both unique and easy to pronounce by your clients.
2. Find Inspiration on Google
Adapting your content for voice search is another important step in your branding strategy. To make your work easier, look for inspiration in Google Searches. Whenever you type in a question, after the first answer you will find a separate box titled “People also ask”.
This section contains questions (and answers) similar to your own. It will help you create new content adapted for voice search, especially in the FAQ area.
3. Incorporate Content into Voice Applications
Many companies use voice applications to enable their prospects to contact them by phone easily and at no cost, through VoIP. This is the future of telephone conversations between companies and their customers, so the domain is expanding.
At this point, take one step further and create voice content for your applications. Think of the questions your clients are likely to ask, and provide answers for them. Right now, voice applications are out of the scope of voice search SEO. However, Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant will suggest this type of content among the answers to queries.
4. Understand the Hierarchy of Questions Users Ask
When you optimise for voice search, you should take into account the level of intent of the users. When people ask “What is X?”, they are merely curious. When they ask “Where can I find X?” they have an intention to buy.
The hierarchy of questions people ask digital assistants ranking from basic curiosity to intent is:
Thus, you can create separate content for the top, middle and bottom of the funnel. In this way, you can offer your prospects the answers they need during their entire journey from looking for information to making a purchase.
5. Make Your Brand Memorable
We left the best for last. In the voice search era, being memorable is more important than ever. With written searches, people get suggestions if they are not really sure about your brand name. With voice search, there are no such suggestions.
So, strive to be consistent in your branding efforts, over all the channels of communication: website, email, social media, print advertising, etc. Now, more than ever, your clients need have your brand name in their memory and recall it as soon as they see your logo or they want to ask the digital assistant to give them the best deals on your products.