’Tis the Season: Voice Interfaces and Your Content

With the gift-giving season in full swing, devices like Amazon Echo and Google Home will be popular wish list items for many people. These smart speakers are designed to serve households, but there is unlimited potential for the technology behind them to change the entire marketing landscape as we know it with voice interface content creation.

In order to immerse myself in the complexities and potential of voice recognition software, I began writing this post using the Google Docs voice typing tool.

Related: Make sure your content is formatted for mobile, too.

After struggling to put out two coherent sentences, it began to feel like some next-level masochism; same thing when I tried a couple different voice typing tools on Amazon’s voice assistant, Alexa.

Physical input, it would seem, is still more productive for the moment, so I resorted back to my standard four-finger speed typing.

Similarly, using my phone’s voice recognition software, I tested sending a dinner-related text message that, due to the nature of my modern technology, translated “Do you want a pasta dinner at 8?” into:

While many of my colleagues have success using the native voice tools on their devices for writing content, it remains tricky for most of us, and documents can require heavy editing for punctuation, grammar, and spelling.

Thankfully, the artificial intelligence infrastructure behind voice recognition is making rapid advances.

The Current State of Voice Interface Technology

Continuous speech recognition software has come a long way since its inception in the late 1960s. Researchers saw more potential for this idea than the initial purpose of directing chess moves, and what was once fodder for sci-fi movies is now a dizzying reality.

Voice interfacing has officially captured the hearts of the masses:

  • Amazon alone has sold more than 10 million Echo units in the United States since it launched in late 2014, and the company is striving to stake its claim as the leader of the AI technology revolution.
  • Google’s AI has been busy creating its own baby AI that is smarter than anything human developers have made to date.
  • Alexa already offers 15,000 skills that can be accessed through Echo, with new advances regularly being announced.

For content creators, the Amazon Transcribe, Amazon Translate, and Amazon Comprehend machine-learning programs will expand the capabilities of speech-to-text, translation, and natural language services far beyond anything we have seen so far.

As this technology becomes easier to use, it will become an ideal solution for companies that need to increase the speed and effectiveness of their content, which is … all of them!

Voice Interface Content Looking Forward

Many people fear AI will make their roles as content creators obsolete, but the opposite is more likely to be true. New technology requires us to learn new skills, and new roles are always created as a result.

Although content bots are becoming more widely used in mainstream media and are capable of churning out frightful amounts of data-laden content in mere seconds, they still write like a computer.

Human writing is subjective and spontaneous. It requires independent and creative thought as well as the quirks and colloquialisms of the individual. For now, these features of human language defy computer logic. And although in the future much of what humans can do AI will be able to do, the imagining will remain reserved for us.

People working together with computers has always been a powerful combination. There will be infinite potential for companies to quickly generate content that effectively persuades leads to take action and buy into ideas.

Imagine content created at light speed guided only by your voice and simple commands. Content that accurately captures not only your brand voice, but the voices of individual authors. Content that is almost guaranteed to please your human readers as well as your metrics, and can supercharge your current automated marketing efforts.

By feeding your company’s AI neural network a multitude of specific copy, it will train itself and create the best content for your business with modifications to any set parameters.

Once this level of intelligence has been achieved, the possibilities for creating, scaling, and distributing your content at a level that has never been possible will become a reality.

Something for Everyone

Whether you need better content to onboard employees and customers, sell your products and services, or create a centralized knowledge base for everyone in your company to contribute to and draw down from, this technology will offer something for every business.

At a practical level, voice interface content creation will increase productivity by negating the time-consuming tasks of clicking and navigating using keyboards and touch screens.

It will also help to relieve the burden of physical stress from poor posture, repetitive strain injuries, and eye strain from hours of typing and squinting. By liberating employees from the necessity of being chained to their laptops in order to be productive, we can look forward to healthier and more relaxed workplaces.

As we move into a future with flying cars (finally!), head transplants, and whatever else Elon Musk decides to make for us, there is huge potential for humans and AI to work alongside each other to create content that is more optimized for our needs than ever before.

We are only at the dawn of discovery when we try to imagine how exactly voice interface content will transform the landscape of business in the coming months and years. As marketers, we should be keeping a sharp eye on this technology and the vast opportunities it will present to us.

Want to share your thoughts about how voice interfaces will affect the way we create content? Connect with us here, and stay in touch on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter.