An Interview with Arianne Walker- Chief Evangelist at Amazon Smart Vehicles [VIDEO]

Charlie Cadbury and Norbert Horvath sit down with Arianne Walker, the Chief Evangelist at Amazon Smart Vehicles to discuss how alexa can help engage with consumers in their car.

Speakers: Charlie Cadbury, CEO, Say It Now; Norbert Horvath, CTO, Say It Now; Arianne Walker, Chief Evangelist, Amazon Smart Vehicles.

Read the full transcript for the video here:

Unknown Speaker 0:00
All righty guys. Thanks very much. So good morning. You’re joining us here in sunny California. And we’re here with REM Walker, who’s the chief evangelist for Alexa smart vehicles and obviously with low budgets.

Unknown Speaker 0:23
We’re gonna do it. Yes, please. Amazon smart vehicle,

Unknown Speaker 0:25
Amazon smart vehicles. Yes. Sorry. No, it’s so confusing. It’s very good. Okay. Good morning, you’re here and you’re joining us from sunny California. We’re here with Ariane Walker, She’s the Chief Evangelist for Amazon smart vehicles. Also, here we have my co founder, our CTO, Norbert, and so we’re gonna jump straight into it get to know you a little bit. So you can tell us a little bit about your world and what you do.

Unknown Speaker 0:48
Absolutely love to first thanks for having me love to be here. And yes, it’s a beautiful day. So thrilled to be here, outside and in person. I love it. So as you said, I am Chief Evangelist for Amazon smart vehicles. And basically what that means is I get to share data driven insights with the automotive and tech industries, particularly around voice in the vehicle, as well as the digital cabin.

Unknown Speaker 1:14
Amazing. And on a day to day basis was you know, what’s, what is your day to day,

Unknown Speaker 1:18
my day to it? Well, sometimes I get to speak to folks like yourselves, other times, I get to go to events and talk to large rooms, or sometimes smaller rooms, I love being able to do that in person. And like I said, I’m excited about doing this back in person, because doing it virtually in front of the computer the last couple of years has has been less interesting, but it’s still good. But then also, I spend a lot of my days actually digging into the insights and the research to actually identify the things that consumers expect, what consumers are experiencing what they want, from those that experience in the vehicle itself.

Unknown Speaker 1:56
Tell us a bit about the sources of those insights. How do you collect these insights? Yeah,

Unknown Speaker 2:00
sure. So we have some of those insights we get from internal from our own customers. And we can, you know, dig into some of that, which is great. But a lot of the data that I look at actually comes from external sources. One of the studies that we have worked on year after year is actually with JD Power, who are experts in automotive, and they’ve helped us really understand across the board from consumers, not just Amazon customers, but consumers across the board, what they expect in the car, what how satisfied they are with the experiences that they’re having in the car today, etc. And so that’s that’s one source of data, but we have lots and lots of sources of data.

Unknown Speaker 2:44
Awesome. And so we’re only talking to an awful lot of radio groups within this this tool series is just set to go your your kind of your background in radio and can you think of radio experiences radio and radio advertising? Can you remember the first radio adverts boots? really stuck out?

Unknown Speaker 3:03
Sure I there actually. There are two advertisements that I remember vividly. I’m not sure if they were the first but they were the first one that I’ll mention is the remember the Big Mac commercial to all beef patties special sauce. Okay, I won’t sing it. And the other one was the Oscar Meyer commercial. You know, we’re advertisement. My bologna has a first name. It’s osaa aren’t right. Right. So those are, like, just built burned into my brain. I love them. I I still sing them to my kids. They laugh at me when I do. But I think I’ll never forget those those adverts.

Unknown Speaker 3:41
We’re always looking for best practice. And what why do you think you’ve remembered them? So well?

Unknown Speaker 3:46
Well, they’re they’re jingles. They’re both jingles. And they’re both jingles that are about the product. And they’re long enough so that you could learn them and sing them. And I and like I said, I still remember them all these years. Laters I’m pretty sure both of those ads were in the 70s. So, you know, they really stuck with me. And I won’t, you know, won’t sing them here today. But I do. I do sing them. I tried to teach my kids the Big Mac commercial. And they just laugh at me. But yeah, it’s it was simple. It was it was almost I can’t call it interactive. Because the I didn’t react back to me, but I got to, to act in seeing and get involved with with the ad itself. That’s what I think.

Unknown Speaker 4:28
Yeah. And that’s quite exciting that it made you react and be present and actually participate in the real world. Obviously, when we come on to why we think that’s that’s so exciting. How do you think advertising has changed since that points up to today?

Unknown Speaker 4:42
So I first of all, I I don’t think that ads do the same kinds of jingles. Today. Now, there’s still some things but they’re short. Right? And I when I hear them, I know what the odds for and so they’re they’re so powerful, you know, I don’t want to want to, you know, dismiss those in any way. But I Don’t go around singing them. You know, and, and a lot of ads don’t have jingles at all right, there’s just talking. And, you know, I kind of only half listen, you know, so, to me, that’s how things have changed.

Unknown Speaker 5:12
You think that the role of in car interactive voice will change the relationship with rich to consumers engage with brands in, in a car?

Unknown Speaker 5:25
Yeah, absolutely. Absolutely. I think, you know, being able to have a conversation with your voice AI, you know, for us, it’s Alexa, of course. But, you know, being able to interact in that very natural way, I think is incredibly powerful, and allows us to think about that allows brands to think about how do I get my message across to customers in a way that can be interactive, using voice not having to worry about the visual, especially when somebody’s in the car. And, and really get people engaged with that

Unknown Speaker 6:01
with that message. And that’s very powerful. And as you’re engaging with the consumers, especially with the JD Power example, do you see a differentiation with how consumers engage with a Alexa device at home versus in a vehicle.

Unknown Speaker 6:16
So what I’ll say is one of the beautiful, amazing benefits is that consumers actually talk about is having a seamless experience, so that continuity, from home to car. So in many ways, it’s a similar experience, when they’re in their home and in their car, they may be asking for different things, you know, potentially, or sometimes they’re asking for the same thing. For instance, I’ll just, I’ll give you an example. You know, when I’m at home, perhaps I’m listening to a podcast on my smart speaker at home and pause that podcast because now I need to jump in the car, and I can then continue that podcast, once I get in the car, seamlessly, no problem, because it’s all connected in the cloud. Likewise, when I go from my car to my home, you know, when I’m in my car, I can actually check on things in my home, make sure that, you know, all my lights are on my my smart lights, you know, or off whatever it needs to be or shutting the garage, or that’s my favorite example. You know, when you leave the house, and you think, oh, did I didn’t close the garage door? Well, we used to have to go around the block and check, you know, so you weren’t, didn’t have anxiety about it. And now you can just ask Alexa to close the garage door and gets done for you. So that that connection and continuity is really is really powerful.

Unknown Speaker 7:36
And then once we have in kind of in car can undergo use cases, you know, what’s what more can you do? When you’re on the go when you’re talking to your voices? Yeah,

Unknown Speaker 7:45
well, you know, I think there are lots of things that people want to be able to do everything from the simple, you know, access all the different great types of entertainment, to being able to connect with the world around them find points of interest, navigate, etcetera. But one of my favorite things is actually being able to find and pay for gas, which is it’s a fabulous experience. Today, consumers in the US can go to any Exxon Mobil station, I think there are over 11,000 stations in in the United States, and you pull up to the gas station and say Alexa, pay for gas, Alexa will confirm your location. So make sure you’re at the gas station that Alexa thinks that you are at, confirm the pump number and then the payment part is completely taken care of. And so you don’t have to get a credit card and you just swipe through. Yeah, it’s so great. Now, you still have to pump the gas in the states where you’re allowed to pump gas. So one day when Alexa can do that, for us, that would be even more incredible. But I just I think that’s such a great use case. And I love it. And I I love using it. My kids laugh at me, whenever I find x on stage, I’m like, Oh, I gotta pull in and say, Billy, you need Gaston. I’m like, Yes, I do.

Unknown Speaker 9:02
And in terms of like quantifying that, the the scale of the opportunity. Yeah. So you know, kind of like the speeds and feeds that you can share in terms of being aware, the amount of time people spend within their vehicles are the amounts of kind of, you know, the where is the opportunity? Yeah. Engagement?

Unknown Speaker 9:19
That’s a really good question. So one thing I can tell you is that there is industry data that shows that people spend, and this was this was pre pandemic, so, you know, but about an hour in the vehicle per day on average, right. So that is that is a lot of time, right. And some people spend significantly more time and other people obviously spend less, but that is a lot of time where you’re in the vehicle and as a driver, I have a hands on the wheel and eyes on the road. And so being able to use your voice and your ears right to engage in that, that content. It’s such a powerful time and place to be able to do that. So great. Great. Opportunity. Yeah, I

Unknown Speaker 10:00
know you’re working internationally as well with your DNA analysis. And we talked earlier, talk to us a bit about how you see this difference around the world in behavior and expectations.

Unknown Speaker 10:12
Sure. So I will go back to the JD Power data that, that we mentioned earlier. And this this last year, they surveyed consumers across four different countries. So the US, the UK, Germany, and India. And while we saw similarities between the US and the European countries, India was a little bit of an outlier, actually, the consumers in India are so bullish on this technology, they just love it, they embrace it, they want to be able to absolutely have the same voice that they have at home in their vehicle, I think I’m trying to remember the numbers, it was like 97, or 98% of them said, they want that same voice, at home, or in their vehicle that they have at home. And they want to do everything with their voice in the car, you know, from the standard things that we talked about earlier entertainment, and navigation, those things all the way down to even being able to shop in their car, with their voice, you know, everything, they just, they just really seem to love the technology. Now, all that being said, I will mention across all four countries, there is a strong preference for that same voice AI that they have at home to be in their vehicle with on average 87% across all four of those countries. So there’s a lot of desire and expectation around this for sure.

Unknown Speaker 11:36
And we found that makes perfect sense. You know, I would hate to have to pick up a different operating system every time I use the phone, right? And it’s given me the same kind of access. I can I can see that works really nicely. You know, in terms of, you know, what we’re doing is I’m helping people that have engaged with that advertising. I think just in summary, we’re hoping to get to a world where you can be driving along in your car and hear a jingle and then talk back and then engage in a conversation. That’s that’s that’s the way that we’re going with this world. And just to kind of sum this all up if I’m, as you’re kind of getting back into into your car and heading away, what radio station will you be listening to?

Unknown Speaker 12:08
Oh, gosh, okay, so I’m not gonna I’m not gonna highlight it. I will admit, I love my 80s Rock. So, so yeah, so I do. So if you live in Southern California, you’ll know what season. But, but I will say I think one of the really powerful things is being able to access all kinds of content, when we talk about radio, not just being able to do it in my car, but also being able to bring that radio back into my home, through a smart speaker is amazing, right? I mean, I know we all well, we used to all have, you know, radios in our home, I think less so nowadays. And so being able to bring that content into the home is great, you know, again, having that continuity, but also in the car, being able to access streaming music, of course, you know, when desired and podcasts and audiobooks and all of it depending on what mood you’re in. You know, I just I absolutely love that.

Unknown Speaker 13:07
amazing, wonderful. Thanks very much for carving out some of your precious time here and also in a week where we’re spending a lot of time in conference centers and in offices. It’s really nice to be brought outside. So thanks so much for your time. Thank you very much. Yes.

Unknown Speaker 13:20
Thanks for having me.

Unknown Speaker 13:23
Great. Are you happy? Was there anything else you wanted to cover? I think that was good. I think that was good. It was great. Easy, easy. Yeah.