Pathway WBC at Nashville Voice

The Power of Voice Technology

Voice skills are the new websites. That’s the view of Data Driven Design owner Paul Hickey who launched Nashville’s first Voice Conference where over 60 business owners – many of them new to voice technology – gathered July 31 at Thistle Farms. Proceeds benefited Corner to Corner, a non-profit focused on impacting Middle Tennessee neighborhoods often seen as under-resourced and an incredible partner to Pathway WBC.

With a focus on Alexa Skills, Google Actions and the power of voice technology for business, the day was conducted workshop style with a keynote kick-off by Marcus Whitney, CEO, Health:Further and Co-owner of the Nashville Soccer Club. Attendees learned from featured facilitators, including our WBC Director Courtenay Rogers, on topics like starting a business podcast, boosting productivity with voice technology, creating a flash briefing and voice enabling applications.

“For a few years, the data has been showing us that not only are more and more people using Alexa and Google Assistant, but also that businesses with Alexa Skills and Google Actions are seeing a 50-plus percent lift in revenue immediately after implementing a voice-based application,” said Hickey.

Believing in Voice

Marcus Whitney asserted that while voice technology is new and nobody can predict how prevalent it will become, entrepreneurs can begin to imagine how building experience with voice technology might serve them in the near future.

“We know how much can change in a small amount of time,” he said.

The emergence of voice technology has the potential to create some massive shifts in how we do business and how we do our jobs, particularly in marketing and internal operations where the drive towards automation makes voice technology adoption inevitable.

Voice technology is creating a new set of opportunities and gives businesses an opportunity to think of ways to add value in their businesses and for their brands and customers through voice.

Kelly Wolf of Data Driven Design presented the benefits of implementing Alexa for Business into your work space and touched on the opportunities for IT professionals, real estate agents, digital agencies, and marketing and sales companies to create more efficient practices. While Alexa is broadly used right now in homes for basic tasks like playing music, giving weather updates and answering questions, the possibilities are endless and far more complex. In a business, voice technology is a service that can help employees increase productivity and communication in areas including device management, meeting room coordination and proprietary voice skills for specific business purposes. She encouraged attendees to think of voice technology as an additional resource or “person” to assign or delegate tasks. Integrating voice technologies with other systems can create new ways to report sales numbers, data and other information requests in mere seconds. This voice technology movement is an open door for many industries to create more efficient practices.

A big question of the day was around bots and which one was better: Alexa or Google. Audrey Wu of Haptik joined as a featured facilitator and discussed how your brand can leverage voice experiences and how to pick the right platform for you brand. Audrey was recently named one of the top 25 chatbot influencers in the world. In addition she has spoken at SXSW, Mobile World Congress, ShopTalk, Social Media Week, Girls Lounge and various technology innovation events. She is also a regular contributor to AdWeek. This workshop demonstrated business use cases for voice and bot based technologies using both Alexa and Google Assistant.

Image from Nashville Voice Conference

Launch your own Business Podcast

Pathway WBC Director, Courtenay Rogers, conducted a hands-on workshop for attendees who wanted to launch their own business podcast using the platform Anchor.FM to integrate with Alexa Flash briefings. Attendees recorded audio and submitted it to the Alexa Skills Store and designed a logo for their Flash Briefing Skill. A total of 12 companies got a podcast and flash briefing in less than two hours which was proof that the process is meant to be easy and quick.

Pathway facilitator and business coach Mia McNeal called the event a game changer. “As a life and business coach for entrepreneurs, my clients always want to stay connected. Learning about voice technology and the power of podcasting will help me further help them!”

Want more reason to dive into voice technology? Data Drive Design shared these statistics at the event and reiterated the importance of using data to make your decisions.

43%: the lift businesses see nine months after launching an Alexa-enabled product

53%: the percent boost businesses see on average almost immediately after incorporating an Alexa Skill into their current product

80,000+: the number of Alexa Skills globally

100 million+: the number of smart speaker users in the world; increasing 15% each month

Voice technology will continue to grow and expand. Find out what new technologies work best for your business. The Nashville Voice Conference is coming back next year and will take place in Nashville, Tennessee on August 7th, 2020. Save the date here!