As consumers rapidly adopt voice technology in their daily lives (over a quarter of Americans own at least one smart speaker), brands are increasingly exploring voice solutions as a means of improving customer experience. However, it is important to remember that consumers are not interacting with one brand alone. Thousands of brands are making their way to voice-enabled environments, and at the moment, they all tend to sound the same. How can brands distinguish themselves and stand out? A custom voice is probably the best answer: this exclusive digital voice fully reflects brand personality and is instantly recognizable.
In parallel, choosing the characteristics of a custom voice is no simple task, and decisions should definitely not be made overnight. Once your voice is ‘on air’ and interacting with your customers, it becomes familiar, and they start to recognize it as part of their customer journey. You’re likely to use this voice for a long time: it will become a constant that you can rely on, just like your logo is in the visual space. A distinguishable, trustworthy voice is not just an anchor in the auditory space. It’s actually the most important anchor overall (alongside your audio logo). To learn more about the importance of speech, let’s dive a bit deeper into what voice interaction means for consumers.
Speech is natural
Voice interaction is the most natural means of communication for humans. We have dedicated areas of the brain, muscles and senses which have become optimized over millenia for interhuman communication, sound generation and the expression of emotions. When a human and a non-human sound are played, babies only turn their heads towards the source of human sound. Paying attention to human voices is inborn! Humanlike speech technology is expected to grow very rapidly.
Of course, brands have a long history with written text. The very first traders used simple signs to advertise their business, e.g. blacksmith, baker, or weaver. With the advent of the mass production era brands started to use text on product labels, operating instructions, and in printed advertising. And then came audio: with the introduction of radio, and later television and internet video, celebrities and (voice) actors started to promote products in commercials, and satisfied customers shared their experience through testimonials. In all these cases, people were using their voices to talk about brands. In fact, neuroscience has demonstrated that associations were made more in relation to the people involved than with the brands themselves. That’s because the brands didn’t actually speak. So, what if a brand could actually speak for itself?
It’s the brand speaking
Times are changing. This is a pivotal moment for the brand world and voice has a key role to play. Now, brands can actually speak for themselves, in their very own voice! And customers can talk to the authentic brand. Everything on air immediately contributes to the brand associations in consumers’ minds. Brands can be interactive and engaging, and continuously improve their connection with consumers.
With ReadSpeaker, you get all the benefits of cutting-edge Deep Neural Network technology. Our VoiceLab leads the way in high-quality humanlike voices that are almost indistinguishable from real-life human voices. And as the technology grows, your Branded Voice will continue to bring increasingly lifelike interaction to user/customer experience.
Finding your brand’s voice
It takes strong expertise to create a voice that perfectly embodies your brand to the point that consumers will associate positive emotions to it and recognize it instantly and consistently. The process requires skills in expressing the characteristics that make your brand unique through specific features in human voices. ReadSpeaker can work with you to define your branded voice characteristics.
ReadSpeaker can help
ReadSpeaker is a global synthetic speech specialist. We have been building our expertise in humanlike text-to-speech solutions since 1999, and currently use next-generation Deep Neural Network technology in our VoiceLab to deliver the most humanlike synthesized voices on the market to Fortune 500 companies across the world. As a subsidiary of the HOYA Corporation, with offices in 15 countries, and over 10,000 clients in 65 countries, we are recognized as the leading independent text-to-speech company.
Interested in more information?
At ReadSpeaker, we understand the challenges of defining priorities as you build your voice strategy. If you’d like to find out more about how Branded Voices can boost your business, download our free eBook. And please reach out to us if you would like to talk about a Custom Voice for your brand.