At a glance

Wavemaker’s Kathryn Saxon (Head of Audience Science) and Sarah Salter (Head of Innovation) outline the current role of voice in consumer marketing, and how brands may be able to use the technology in the future.

Why it matters

As shown by WARC’s latest Marketer’s Toolkit survey, advertisers are not getting to grips with voice. Yet smart speaker and voice assistant adoption rates suggest the technology is likely to become integral to consumer purchase behaviour in the near-term.


  • There are six primary areas from which advertisers can approach voice technology: innovation, skills/action, SEO, conversational ads, sponsorship and chatbots.
  • The increased use of voice for more complex tasks, including product research, opens the door for brands to provide relevant voice content at multiple stages during the purchase journey.
  • Advertisers must prepare for voice “ubiquity”, with connectivity in cars, throughout homes and more sophisticated voice assistants, which can cultivate detailed user profiles of each individual household member.