On Friday, voice computing analytics firm VoiceLabs announced the launch of Sponsored Messages, an ad network that aims to allow Alexa developers monetize their skills with advertisements. Brands including ESPN, Wendy’s, and Progressive Insurance have signed on to use this service, which will allow them to inject short audio blurbs into skills made by developers using VoiceLabs’ analytics platform and having opted in this ad network to monetize their skills.
What Brands Need To Do
Two weeks ago, Amazon updated its developer policy for Alexa, banning ad messages in all skills except for the ones for flash briefings, streaming music, and streaming radio. About 3,000 skills currently in the Alexa Skills Store fit this description, according to VoiceLabs, although only a fraction of them is using VoiceLabs’ service. This launch marks an important step in monetizing Alexa skills and pioneering audio ads delivered via digital voice assistants. This creates a new opportunity for brands that want to reach Alexa users without committing to develop their own conversational skills, and brands that have already created their skills can use it to promote their branded voice experience.
How We Can Help
The Lab has extensive experience in building Alexa Skills and chatbots to reach consumers on conversational interfaces. So much so that we’ve built a dedicated conversational practice called Dialogue. The “Miller Time” Alexa Skill we developed with Drizly for Miller Lite is a good example of how Dialogue can help brands build a conversational customer experience, supercharged by our stack of technology partners with best-in-class solutions and an insights engine that extracts business intelligence from conversational data.
If you’d like to learn more about how to effectively reach consumers on conversational interfaces, or to leverage the Lab’s expertise to take on related client opportunities within the IPG Mediabrands, please contact our Client Services Director Samantha Barrett ([email protected]) to schedule a visit to the Lab.