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Customer behaviors are known to change gradually and thus leave ample time for brands to play catchup. But the coronavirus induced a fear of the infection spreading through touch-based interactions and brought about a sense of urgency for contactless interactions. This sudden shift in customer behavior has motivated many companies to embrace voice assistants as a new way of interacting and transacting.

Sensing an opportunity, proactive companies across industries throughout APAC and the Middle East are making firm moves to voice-enable their business. We surveyed 1,400 marketing and IT executives to better understand what is motivating their organizations to take the voice-plunge and to see where they are advancing and falling short. Key takeaways include:

  1. Companies view voice as a vital force to reckon with and expect its adoption to pay off with top- and bottom-line growth accorded to early movers.

  2. Many brands are gearing up to make necessary investments in voice-enabling their businesses.

  3. Customer service was called out as a fruitful starting point by a majority of respondents.

  4. Various challenges were revealed, with data privacy topping the list.

From our research, we developed a three-phased maturity model to help companies achieve their voice ambitions. The infographic below reveals key voice trends and the essence of our model.