Google Assistant Starts Displaying Ads for Nest Hubs
Google Assistant is starting to run ads for Google devices, as first shared by Reddit user jkSam. The ad for a Nest Hub on sale at the Google Store appeared on several Android devices, expanding a test spotted earlier this year and marking a new development in advertising pushed by voice assistants.
Google Ad AI
Google Assistant’s promotion of a discounted Nest Hub smart display comes months after ads for a Google Home Mini appeared from the voice assistant. The new ad is tied to Google’s holiday sales, however, suggesting it’s been in the works for a while and is going to become more common this year. A brief test with an Android device saw a similar ad appear, with the option to ask the voice assistant not to push any more ads. The reason for the specific ad is likely to encourage those already using Google’s voice assistant on one product to buy into its smart home ecosystem as well while there’s a discount on the hardware. The discount was not itself different from what was already available, it just highlighted the sale for those who might have missed it.
The Android operating system allows Google Assistant to share these ads in text form, taking advantage of the ubiquity of its devices to reach a potentially huge audience that might buy Nest devices and make Google Assistant their go-to voice assistant. The ad also shows how virtual assistants leverage their presence to boost sales of many goods. The growth in voice commerce only enhances that capability and it’s starting to show up within Google’s main rival. Amazon recently started putting out more Alexa interactive ads, for instance.
Third-party voice advertisers like voice ad startup Say It Now are going for a more ecumenical approach to their interactive ads, especially after recently acquiring voice AI startup GetStarted. There’s been notable efforts like the interactive audio ad campaign run by AdTonos in London last year for Audi, as well as Pandora’s experiments, while Spotify has run campaigns for Unilever brands and UK cosmetics firm Nars. Research has borne out the impact of these kinds of ads. A Cumulus Media case study published early this year found that those who heard an ad for the Southeast Michigan Ford Dealers Association on their smart speaker were 24% more likely to be familiar with the brand.
“This might not be what you wanted when you thought about your friendly assistant helping you each day. But, advertising appears to always be the unstoppable force of the digital world,” Voicebot founder Bret Kinsella pointed out. “On the bright side, it just might lead to some better monetization options for third-party skill developers.”