Does voice fit the B2B buyer journey?

Does voice fit the B2B buyer journey?

September 10, 2018

The explosive growth of voice devices and search is undeniable.

By 2020, 30% of web browsing sessions will be done without a screen.

That might seem overly optimistic. But when you consider the incredible growth that voice search applications have experienced in just the past year, we think it’s clear that voice search will continue to evolve—and become one of the primary means to obtain information as time goes on.

Today, many business voice apps are purely informational. They are designed to reach people who are in the middle of their B2B buyer journeys. But that’s just one way this technology could work for you. Here are three creative and effective ways to use voice search across every part of the buyer journey—from beginning to end.

  1. Start at the top. Voice search works by matching a user’s semantic queries—for example, questions about their main challenges and key trends in their industry—with short, contextual replies. That reply, known as the “featured snippet,” is from whatever single search return is deemed most relevant to the query. The featured snippet is the only result they receive, which is what makes voice search so effective for the top of the buyer journey—so long as you’re number one.
  2. Meet them in the middle. To make voice search work effectively for mid-funnel buyer journey activities, complement your voice search results with supporting voice app content. Write your content to satisfy interest and drives engagement through seamless, natural-feeling “quick facts” about who you are, how you help your customers, and what makes you different, for example.
  3. Finish strong. In addition to informing and inspiring further engagement, you can also write responses that appeal to B2B buyers who are near the end of their journeys with bottom-of-funnel activities and content. For example, one of the most-used apps on the Alexa platform right now is an app called “Make Me Smart.” This app provides the user with a daily update of little-known facts that would make Cliff Clavin blush. This would be an excellent approach to confirmational content—statistics, customer experience data and more—for an industrial brand that wants to take a position as the undisputed expert in a given field.

The future's right around the corner. Voice apps may still be thought of by most people as little more than the latest shiny, new objects. But if there’s one thing we are most confident of, it’s this:

Voice is evolving, and fast.

And as the B2B market continues to change rapidly, so too will voice—along with all the ways it can be used.

But what do you think? How do you see voice affecting your organization’s B2B marketing? And how do you think that will change in the next 12 months?

Just give us a shout. We’d love to hear what you think.

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