Magazine publishers may still be getting to grips with digital magazine apps, but the truly innovative publishers should start looking towards voice apps.
The way trends are moving today, in about two years from now, companies will be trying to incorporate voice searches and voice apps into their overall marketing strategy. A quick search will show you more affordable yet high-quality smart speakers, meaning more uptake in the market. In fact, if you do a survey of your subscribers now, chances are a certain percentage will already have these devices or that some of them already perform voice searches.
At present, voice apps are still on their early days. However, basing on the trends, voice apps may be on their way to becoming mainstream soon. Even then, what are the specific benefits of voice apps for magazine publishers? Let’s take a look below.
Expanding your customer engagement
As a digital magazine or publication, you’ve been limited to text and visual engagement tactics across your websites, videos, and social media. Some may have incorporated podcasts or live chat into their customer engagement strategy, but these are only for the few magazine publishers that have enough resources to invest in these.
Adopting a voice strategy and developing a voice app for your magazine will provide a new dimension to your customer engagement strategy. It's a new channel that gives your audience a new way to interact with you.
New opportunities for customer acquisition
With the right voice search strategy, you can capture new audiences if you succeed in dominating strategic voice search keywords or search terms, particularly for implicit invocations - or voice commands that don’t include a specific brand or app and forces the virtual assistant to suggest a voice app to use.
Even for customers that you will engage with it, it's a breath of fresh air and, done properly, could get you some referrals or at least some great reviews that will help your voice app be noticed.
Building a connection with your readers
Voice search, voice assistants, and voice apps are differentiated from their more mainstream counterparts by their more intimate or personal nature. By opening up this channel for your readers to interact with you, you put your magazine brand closer to your readers.
In the beginning, functionalities in your voice app for magazine may be limited to searching for articles and reading a digested version of them or perhaps a facility for renewing subscriptions. Eventually, it can be a way to enrich the content you offer to your audience. For example, BBC has begun to experiment with interactive radio plays that incorporate the listener into the play itself through voice technology.
First mover advantage
Since most publishers are still either on the fence or don’t even know about voice apps yet, your digital magazine can take this opportunity to start crafting your own voice strategy and develop a voice app for your customers to engage with. As a first mover, you’ll undoubtedly reap the rewards of being an innovator.
At the outset, it brands your magazine as innovative, modern and forward thinking. Remember that magazine subscribers have specific expectations from their magazines. Usually they expect higher quality articles, unique insights, an in-depth examination of a particular subject or to get information that won’t be available anywhere else. All these are “added value”. Having a voice app earlier than your competitors is certainly among the added value capabilities that will be appreciated by your readers.
Additionally, if you consider that voice search interfaces are designed, they only give one search result per query. Establishing a solid voice strategy early in the game will allow your magazine to position its content at the top of voice search results.
Aside from all the reasons stated above, you should remember that you’re not the only one looking at the developments in voice apps for magazine publishers. It isn’t too unlikely for your competitors to be aware of these trends as well. Will you take this opportunity adopt a voice strategy this early, or will you wait and see what your competitors come up with?