Why brands that own the market will own voice search

As we use voice assistants more and more to arrange our lives, those brands whose names have come to represent their sector will be more powerful than ever

As virtual assistants begin to organise more of our lives – refilling our refrigerators, cupboards and wardrobes – will agencies begin pitching to Alexa, Siri et al for a place on their roster?

The use of voice activated virtual assistants is expected to double by 2024, from 4.2 billion today to 8.4 billion: that’s more assistants than humans. In a world where virtual assistants are calling restaurants and hair salons on our behalf and acting on generic instructions such as “book me a flight to Barcelona” – how will brands ensure they are on the virtual shopping assistants’ list in the first place?

Will “Hi Siri, here’s a short mood film we put together to bring the idea to life” be followed by a synthetic voice sharing the dreaded “You came a very close second”. Probably not. What will become increasingly important however is the role of proprietary eponyms.

Proprietary eponyms are the pinnacle of products, those that are called what the market calls it: the Aspirins, the Band-Aids, and the Q-tips of the supermarket shelves.