Voice search is potentially a “winner takes all” environment for marketers, and brands that fail to funnel enough investment into new tech will be left behind, according to new research published at the weekend by Bing Ads.
A third of the 150 marketers surveyed for the latest study still believe that voice search is a passing “fad” despite the fact that consumers in the UK use it more than twice a day. In younger age segments, voice is even more popular, and Microsoft Advertising warned that marketers “should ignore this transformation at their peril”.
There has been little enthusiasm for voice search thus far as marketers say that just 2% of their budgets are devoted to the practice, which means that it ranks near the bottom of the most important channels. However, 17% did say that they expect to spend more on voice during the next 12 months.
Marketers may finally be recognizing the power of voice, and Microsoft Advertising EMA Head of Brand Marketing Jason Miller believes that the rise of digital assistants is as pivotal as the initial adoption of smartphones a decade ago.
With voice search in its relative infancy, brands have an opportunity to get ahead of the competition, and there has never been a better time to boost spend on search as it is inherently different from the traditional text. Publicis Media executive Sam Holt said: “Search rank is a critical invoice, as most voice assistants will suggest the first search listing. Brands must prepare for this future.”