Voice search is growing at a pace that no one expected. Digital marketing is already gearing up to embrace the change brought in by the growth of voice search, but what about social media? People are already showing a change in search behavior when using voice enables services, soon they will move onto social.
We are not making just an assumption but we do have number supporting the claim. In the official announcement, Google revealed at over 55% teens and 41% of adults use voice search at least once a day. The search giant also revealed the breakdown of the activities carried out using voice search. Here’s how teens and adults use voice search:
Slowly, the users are getting more comfortable with voice-based searching, all thanks to the voice-first mobile devices. All smartphones are now provided with voice assistants, not to mention the popularity of smart home devices like Amazon Alexa and Google Home.
If this is not enough evidence for you, Google has another revelation to make. Now 20 percent of mobile queries are voice searches. This share is expected to grow and reach around 50% by the end of 2020 according to comScore.
Before we move on to the impact of voice search on social media, we have to take a look at why the voice search is getting so popular.
Popularity of Voice Search
Innovation in the personal computing and mobile devices sector is one of the factors that popularized the voice search. However, a more progressive cause is the inherent behavior of people to root for voice over typing. Here is a study by StoneTemple that shows in what environment people use voice search the most.
It is evident that people are reluctant to use voice commands on their phones in public but are comfortable doing the same around friends or at home.
The age factor is also another major factor as reported by StoneTemple study. The survey explains, “There is a definite tendency for those under 24 to use voice commands quite a bit more than the other age groups (51.6% vs. 38.6% for all respondents).”
Not just the users’ behavior but voice search is also impacting mobile experience. Now most companies are adapting artificial intelligence combined with voice search for marketing, answering user queries, and offering support and services.
Now, most brand use AI backed platforms like Facebook Messenger and the trend is fast catching up. According to SEO agency SeoEaze, “voice recognition is nothing new in tech space, but for digital marketing it can be a boon or bane depending on how we optimize our content and social media profiles. Maintaining a natural conversation language in the content is key of voice optimization.”
Changes in Social Media
Now to answer the big question, what changes has voice search brought in the realm of social media?
Not anything big, for now.
At present, there is a very small percentage of people using voice commands to interact with family and friends on social media platforms.
Well, not a lot yet. There is a small percentage of people using voice search and commands to interact with friends and family on their social media profiles.
But as the voice search gets better, there is a high possibility that people will interact with any application on their mobile devices by simply talking to them. You can already see the improvement in AI bot technology and it is getting better at recognizing the accents and natural language processing. This advancement will break down the language barrier and soon people will be using their social profile via voice commands.
Evident Developments in Bring Voice Search and Social Media Together
We already have some development in pairing social media with voice search. The personal assistants like Siri are already bridging the gap between the social networks and humans. The use of personal assistants is on the rise according to Thrive Analytics. A survey by them shows that “Usage is highest among Millennials (18-29) with seven out of 10 using personal assistants on a regular basis.”
Facebook already offers the voice messaging feature on its Messenger. But the real deal is the secret AI-powered personal assistant M that the social media giant has been working on behind the scene. Although the talks in media are that Facebook might be shutting off M soon, we still believe there’s a strong possibility of a better version of the assistant to be introduced.
Soon other social media platforms like Twitter, YouTube and Instagram are expected to adopt voice-based assistance.
Furthermore, there are third-party apps like WonderVoice that offer you option to use voice to control most of your favourite apps. The number of such intuitive AI apps will increase as people get more used to voice search.
The Future of Voice Search
It is difficult to predict how will voice search impact the social media in the near future. As the AI tech improves it will further refine user experience making the mobile to the human conversation a lot more accurate and accessible.
Predominantly the development of voice search will be to make it better at answering questions. However, in terms of changes in social media, we expect the following changes:
- Social media platforms like Facebook enabling full voice control. You may be able to open messages, reply to them, comment and like just using your voice.
- Voice search might boost the social media marketing potential. In the near future brands, influencers, marketers and bloggers may be creating ad campaigns using voice, making payments hands-free or adding voice recording capability to their campaigns and ads.
- Another futuristic advancement can be linking your social media to all smart devices with just a voice search.
We are already seeing a shift in the digital marketing trends towards AI and voice optimization. For now, voice search is in its infant state emerging at a rapid pace.
However, for now, the big question remains, how will it mature and affect social media. Will we have a hands-free social media in the near future? If yes, what will it look like?