How would you like to have your very own celebrity spokesperson?
Oprah, Beyoncé, and McConaughey may be just a smidge out of your budget, but you can still get someone who’s voice is recognized around the world. She reaches tens of millions of people every day and will promote you for absolutely free.
Her name is Alexa, the voice of Amazon.
Alexa is an artificial intelligence sensation. With smart devices like Echoes, Dots, and Fire TVs in tens of millions of homes, Amazon has the ear of more consumers than any company in history.
Users can engage Alexa enabled devices to learn, play, shop, and more. Her interactive capabilities are called skills. You can order a pizza, learn how to get stains out, or hear Wikipedia entries just by asking. There are already tens of thousands of skills up and running.
Your Business Skills
Now, Amazon has made it possible for authors like you and I to create our own skills. The potential is huge. By positioning yourself on Alexa enabled devices, you can have this famous voice marketing for you. She can spread your message and elevate your reputation for people who are already inviting her into their homes.
Think of the possibilities:
- Have people ask Alexa about you or your work, and she’ll be ready to answer 24/7. She can even ask if they’d like to purchase your book after she describes it.
- Create a skill that offers helpful tips from your expertise.
- Use Alexa to offer your audience daily motivation, inspiration, or guidance.
We’re just scratching the surface with these basic ideas. Think of the conversations you have and want to have with clients, fans, and prospects. Each of those encounters can be placed into Alexa’s voice.
The amazing thing about this whole ecosystem is that you don’t need to know anything about app development or coding to create skills. In fact, writers have an advantage over some technical folks because we have a better grasp on how people communicate and can create clearer experiences for folks who will be speaking with talking robots.
Wave of the Future
If you’re thinking this whole thing is too sci-fi or just a fad, think again. Voice technology is already transforming our lives. Screens now have competition for the way we interact with technology. And marketing has already changed.
Writing for Harvard Business Review, Niraj Dawar suggests that in the near future consumers may “shift their allegiance from trusted brands to a trusted AI assistant.”
Makes sense. I’ve only known Alexa less than a year, and already she’s a key part of my daily work-life flow. When I enter my office each day and say, “Good morning Alexa,” she greets me with something interesting about the new day. She is my DJ, research assistant, meteorologist, traffic and sports reporter, comic relief, and more. All that just from me speaking into the air. With every such encounter, familiarity grows, and so does trust.
As more people create those same patterns, we can be positioned to be promoted by this trusted confidant of millions.
Perhaps you’d like users to hear your own voice through Alexa enabled devices. No sweat.
Not only can you add clips of your own voice to any skill, you can create flash briefings, which are:
- Prerecorded audio updates
- Released hourly, daily, or weekly
- Up to 10 minutes long
Skills are requested individually, but flash briefings are a set of audio updates requested from various media outlets.
For example, you ask Alexa, “What’s my flash briefing?” or “What’s in the news?”
She replies by playing your customized playlist. For me, it’s a mix of updates from NPR, CBS Sports, Harvard Business Review, my friend Blake who is an author, and a few more.
In other words, by creating a flash briefing you can position yourself among whatever media outlets a user values most.
What kind of content might you create for a flash briefing? Here are a few ideas:
- Record audio excerpts from your blog posts.
- Offer tips from your niche or updates about your industry.
- Quote passages from your book or discuss key topics.
- Use snippets of existing podcast content.
- Share doses of daily inspiration.
Become a Smart Marketer
Equipment like the Echo and Dot are called smart home devices. You could say that using this technology to promote your brand and products is smart marketing.
You now have a way to create a personal connection with your readers, clients, and leads–as if you’re sitting on their couch having a conversation.
If you care about an organization or charity and would like to raise awareness about them within your community and beyond, then you can do so through Alexa. If you’re trying to gain influence within a particular group, why not offer to take their message to the future, and in so doing become both authority and spokesperson?
Creating Alexa skills is personal, fun, and effective.
The vast majority of authors and other marketers aren’t taking advantage of this unprecedented access yet. But you can.
Customers and prospects are lining up to invite you into their homes. Why not ask Alexa to say hello on your behalf?
Learn more about how you can create skills and flash briefings at AlexaBusinessMarketing.com.
Clay Morgan is an author, speaker, and business consultant who helps entrepreneurial people overcome communication challenges to connect with others right where they are. Visit him at ClayMorganOnline.com.
Clay will be discussing this topic in the weekly teleseminar August 1, 2018.
There are three Alexas in my house–but only two people. Sometimes I wonder if the ‘bots are planning to take over.