What is voice search and what does it mean for brands and the world of sports?

Voice search is increasingly becoming a part of everyday life, giving brands major opportunities to win the hearts and minds of their consumers. Just as smartphones and social media have become permanent fixtures in the digital world, so too will voice search. According to comScore, 50 percent of all searches will be voice searches by 2020. Brands who decide not to understand the ways in which they could connect with their audiences via voice search may soon find themselves left behind.

So what is voice search?

Voice search essentially allows users to speak into a device as opposed to typing keywords into a search query to produce results. Voice technology was first designed in the 1950s, but it has progressed massively in the last few years, with the latest devices on the scene—Amazon Echo and Google Home—being the most sophisticated voice assistants that consumers have ever seen.

Voice assistants continue to be integrated with other technology such as cars, wearables, connected TVs, appliances and other smart home devices. The most common tasks performed by voice assistants include getting directions, making phone calls, listening to music and finding nearby stores. According to a study by Google, at least half of the people who own a dedicated voice assistant device have made a purchase through it.

Its set to take over as the dominant search form

Jim Salveson, Exec Producer of the Football Social at independent digital media company Communicorp as well as Director of Hive Content, says that beyond the simple functions which genuinely have an impact on people’s lives, voice technology is still waiting for the moment that transforms the landscape.

That being said, the technology is evolving all the time and as a result consumers are becoming increasingly interested. Voice search isn’t only here to stay, it’s on the rise. In the future a brand without a voice search presence is likely to be as odd as a company without a website or Facebook page.

In the coming years, we are probably going to start asking our devices to do all sorts of things we never would have dreamed of asking Siri back in 2011. And as people increasingly use voice search to ask for products and services, the first businesses to respond will be the ones to stand out.

So how can sport leverage voice technology

As voice technology continues to grow it will become increasingly important for businesses to include a voice search strategy into their overall digital marketing plan. Building a voice search strategy isn’t just about remaining relevant – it is about creating a unique customer experience that will look to develop relationships.

The question now is how can sport channel its success? So far in 2019, the NFL have come up with a novel way to play around with Alexa’s capabilities, using it as a sort of teaching resource for new fans to learn rules and jargon ahead of the playoffs and Super Bowl.

We as a company are excited to see how voice technology will evolve, and we know that we are bound to see plenty more uses of the technology by teams and leagues before the end of the year and into 2020. In the meantime, we would love to know if you are using voice search within sports… do you use a voice assistant device to find out about sports updates, your team and sports scores etc. or possibly even book tickets. Get in touch and let us know at https://p11.tv/contact/