Virtual experiences have become the norm, and recently, we’ve all embraced a new way of life behind the screen. As a result, it’s not just the use of video that’s experienced a rise in popularity – it’s audio too. Sound has emerged as a great connector – bringing people together in a world gone virtual.
Audio has been a growing trend for years, thanks in most part to the rise in audio-first technology. But in recent months, we’ve witnessed a rapid acceleration in the trend – with multiple touchpoints available for businesses to take advantage of. One of the areas hardest hit by the pandemic has been retail, and the shutters are only just beginning to rise for many of these stores. This has led many retailers to come up with ways to emulate the shopping experience virtually. Sonic cues are being used to let consumers know they’ve entered a new space, along with background music and sound effects to evoke the familiar sonic elements of physical locations. It’s made businesses think twice about what their location sounds like to reproduce the most realistic in-store experiences possible – appealing to every sense in the process.
Virtual brand value:
Zoom was already an important tool for many companies, but lately, digital meeting rooms have opened the door for brands to communicate with people in new and exciting ways. Premium skincare brand Soko Glam and food giant Chipotle have each been encouraging their customers to forge meaningful connections through virtual Zoom hangouts. Instead of using a hosting platform like Instagram Live, the brands have chosen to encourage the community to speak up and share their own experiences – creating much more human, two-way conversations. There’s also an opportunity for businesses to use digital meeting rooms to host group presentations or webinars, and repurpose this content to powerful effect. By recording these sessions and using the audio, brands are able to develop podcast material – allowing them to connect with consumers in another valuable way.
The caller experience: another virtual space
Call queues were a virtual space we all encountered regularly prior to the recent pandemic. Yet, not all companies were taking advantage of this powerful space. As callers wait to be connected or transferred to their chosen party, they represent a captive audience – and audio has the potential to make a big impact in this arena. Many PHMG clients have embraced the opportunities this time presents in recent months – enhancing the caller experience through reassuring messages, important updates and on-brand content. It’s been a way for businesses to reach out to their callers at a time when establishing a connection has been more vital than ever before.
The last few months have seen businesses in all industries get creative with communication – putting audio high on their agenda to reach new and existing audiences. It’s clear many of us now have a whole new outlook on life – which is something brands must continually address to keep people engaged in this new virtual world.