Tag Archives: Local

Stepping into the future with voice SEO

Did you know that.. there’s such a thing as voice SEO?

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According to PwC, 65% of 25-49 year olds use voice assistants daily and with this ever-rising popularity in devices such as Amazon Echo, Google Assistant, Cortana and Siri, it makes sense that Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is now being carried out for voice searches. The optimisation of keywords and phrases for searches of this nature is now just as important (and could even soon be more important) than standard SEO for keyboard searches. Whilst it is true that most standard SEO techniques are still relevant since voice searches are converted into text before returning results, there are some key differences between keyboard searches and voice-activated searches that make voice SEO important to consider. 

Firstly, and perhaps most obviously, searches carried out using voice assistants are phrased differently to text-based or typed searches. When asking questions to voice assistant devices, users naturally use more conversational terms and phrases. This means it is important for businesses to ensure that their online content reflects this natural, conversational tone of voice, not only in terms of keywords but also in terms of semantics and context, in order to be returned as a relevant search result that answers users’ questions.

It is also important to note that the most common use of voice assistants is to search for local amenities, stores and businesses. The increasing use of voice search to find out what time the local takeaway shuts, or where the nearest hairdresser is, means that now is the time for businesses to focus on their local SEO. This can include making sure that they have an up to date “Google My Business” page as well as building up online reviews to increase visibility on Google Search and Maps, in turn, making them more likely to appear as a search result. 

Finally, don’t forget that when using voice search, users are often not returned a selection of results as they are with keyboard searches. Unless the voice assistant includes a screen, users expect a single, verbal response to their query. The most relevant option is selected by the voice assistant and if there is a “featured snippet” this will always be the result chosen to be read out. With this in mind, it is more important than ever to be aiming to reach that “Position Zero” on search results. 

With ComScore predicting 50% of all searches in 2020 to be voice-activated, and the BBC set to launch their own voice assistant, Beeb, next year, it is time to step into the future with voice SEO. For more advanced tips, check out Search Engine Watch‘s six essential factors to consider in voice search optimisation.

Pink taxis hit the streets of Karachi

Karachi

Commuting in the crowded city of Karachi, in Pakistan, is often an unpleasant experience for women, especially in some districts in the East, which are rated as the most unsafe ones. According to a recent report, most female commuters face hostility and sexual harassment when using public transport.

In order to tackle the issue and protect female customers, a new initiative has been introduced in the city, which allows women to call the Pink Taxi, a women-only taxi, by phone, mobile app or directly on the street. The taxi drivers include housewives, students and young women, who wear a pink scarf and a black coat as their uniform.

Since lack of safe transportation is one of the reasons why the majority of women in Pakistan do not work, there was certainly a need for such a service, which will also be extended to other cities, including Lahore and Islamabad, in the upcoming months.

By Maria D'Innocenzo

Talking about localisation…

In a global context, one can wonder how brands manage to remain relevant to their local consumers. From Coca-Cola to Pixar, these four examples shine a light on specific brand strategies that tackle the issue head on.

A pocketful of Coca-Cola

Coca-Cola redesigned its bottle to better suit the needs of Indian consumers. Officially known as the "Affordable Small Sparkling Package" – or “ASSP” – this smaller bottle increases the product's shelf life by ensuring that the drink stays carbonated for longer. This is particularly useful to the Indian market, as rural areas often desire smaller, more affordable products, but struggle to keep them fresh as transportation can involve long stretches of distance and time. So far, the new design is experiencing success in the eight Indian states where it is being sold, and the company plans to expand the launch to the rest of India in 2017.

CocaCola

Culturally aware in Canada

In order to make the Chinese community in Canada feel at home during this past Lunar New Year, Kellogg’s Corn Flakes released a celebratory special edition Chinese New Year package, which included a festively stylized Cornelius the Rooster decorated in the traditional red and gold of the holiday, along with culturally-inspired graphics, traditional Chinese New Year well wishes written in Simplified Chinese, and fun facts about the Year of the Rooster. The limited edition pack also featured instructions on how to create a “zhezhi” rooster. Zhezhi is the Chinese art of paper folding, which was originally used for ceremonial purposes.

Kellogg's

Unilever is going local

Unilever is coming up with innovative ways to reach rural consumers in emerging markets. Two examples of note: Hindustan Unilever Limited (HUL) trains local women as rural, door-to-door sales agents for their communities. It's been so successful that the company has launched similar programs in other countries. In Pakistan, Unilever trained the local women as beauticians, allowing them to offer beauty services out of their homes – in conjunction with these beauty treatments, the women sell Unilever products to their customers and earn commission, as well as incentives.

Unilever Pakistan

Not everyone hates broccoli!

Adapting films for international audiences is not as easy as it may seem. When Pixar adapts its films for foreign audiences, visuals are often amended in order to help the film resonate with international audiences. In Inside Out, for example, Riley, one of the characters, is forced to eat some much-hated broccoli. In Japan, where broccoli is widely enjoyed, the vegetable was replaced by a bell pepper instead.

Inside Out

Standing tall: when brands speak out for diversity

In the world of advertising, it’s a generally accepted truth that diversity is, on a whole, lacking. Taking a stand against the social stigmas that still exist in society today, brands are beginning to speak out for diversity through their campaigns – diversity, and equality, are something to be cherished and encouraged. Creative Culture presents some of our favourite international and local campaigns from the last few years.

United by Half

In honour of International Women’s Day 2017, and as a part of their Women Empowerment Program, Italian brand United Colors of Benetton released a campaign in support of gender equality. Launched specifically in the Indian market, the film shows girls and women as equals in every aspect of their lives, helping to combat social taboos that still exist in the country today.

 

Hearing Hands

In 2015, Samsung brought an entire community together in order to introduce their new video call centre service for the hearing-impaired. The Turkish participants secretly learned sign language to surprise a hearing impaired man in their community. In a choreographed sequence, the entire town communicates with him for the first time, and at the end, he is introduced to the new service. The advert ends in happy tears and reminds us all that ‘standard’ services may not actually be available to all, notably those with disabilities.

 

All that we share

Danish television network TV2 recently released a campaign to remind us not to judge a book by its cover. In its experiential campaign, men, women and children from all walks of life discover just how much they have in common. The advert speaks volumes because, in addition to broaching the subjects of class divides and social status, it features several immigrants who are currently living in Denmark, helping to combat the negative stigma that is often associated with asylum seekers.

 

Leftover women

Tackling a social stigma head on, SK-II released a campaign in 2016 shedding light on China’s ‘leftover women’. Negatively labelled by society, unmarried women over the age of 25 are often made to feel less than. In this powerful advert, the Japanese beauty brand gives these women a voice, showing the world that despite the stigma, they are independent, successful, and above all, happy.

 

As brands like Nike have recently demonstrated with the Nike Pro Hijab, tailoring your products to an untapped niche target market can pay off. When it comes to strategy, the most powerful messages are those that carry an emotional weight, and that of unity proves to be particularly relevant in our current global political context.

By Carly Coulter