Amazon’s Alexa is one of the most used virtual assistants out there, and it’ll soon take a new approach to make its answers more accurate. How, you might ask? By asking for help from brands — in exchange for some brand exposure, of course.
Amazon officially announced a new Alexa feature called “Customers Ask Alexa,” which allows brands to input their own answers to common questions made by users, instead of pulling those answers from the Internet or from Alexa’s crowdsourced answers.
They’ll be, in a way, ads disguised as answers, and they would presumably be shown only when someone asks something relevant to that brand. Whenever an answer to a question is coming from a brand, it’ll be clarified and the answer will be attributed to that specific brand. All answers will go through content moderation and quality checks, and brands will not be able to pay for answers, so theoretically, those two things should keep brands from abusing the system. Of course, though, that’ll depend on how good, or bad, those checks are.
If the system is done right, it could be a way for answers to some questions to be curated and, in turn, improved. And in the process, brands can get exposure. Everyone wins.
Branded answers will start showing up on Amazon search results by the end of this year, while Alexa should begin reading them out by the beginning of next year.