Starbucks has just unveiled a new virtual assistant that will take your order via voice or text, further enhancing the brand experience it offers to its customers.
Starbucks has worked hard over the last decade or so to position itself to take advantage of the technological trends that have the opportunity to develop a smoother, seamless, efficient brand experience that can be scaled across stores worldwide. The latest brand experience enhancement to come from the coffee giant was just announced today: a new feature in their mobile app that allows customers to order and pay for their food and drinks just by speaking. This includes being able to modify their drink order as if they were speaking with a barista in real life.
Additionally, Starbucks is launching a skill for the Amazon Alexa platform, letting customers re-order their favorite items by speaking to their Echo speaker or other Alexa-powered device.
The feature utilizes artificial intelligence to process the incoming orders through a new messaging interface in the Starbucks app. Customers can also interact with the virtual assistant by messaging their order. The assistant will confirm the location of the order and help to process payment as well.
The Rise of Voice Computing
Starbucks has been at the forefront with technology that improves the brand experience and makes ordering much simpler overall. It makes sense then, that the brand would add its own voice assistant to the mix. A recent forecast estimated that 24.5 million voice-first devices would ship in 2017, with platforms like Amazon’s Alexa and Google Home leading the way.
Starbucks Mobile App Brand Experience Success
Ever since Starbucks launched their mobile app, they have been able to positon themselves away from the competition. The Starbucks app has led the market in terms of advancing technologies like mobile payments and order-ahead.
At its investor day, the company noted it has 8 million mobile paying customers, with 1 out of 3 using Mobile Order & Pay. The company also said today it has 13 million Starbucks Rewards members in the U.S.
Staying True to the Starbucks Brand Experience
One thing that makes Starbucks a stand-out brand is its commitment to continuously enhancing the brand experience. Chief technology officer Gerri Martin-Flickinger stated:
“The Starbucks experience is built on the personal connection between our barista and customer, so everything we do in our digital ecosystem must reflect that sensibility. Our team is focused on making sure that Starbucks voice ordering within our app is truly personal and equally important was finding the right partner in Amazon to test and learn from this new capability.”
What’s Your Take?
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Also published on Medium.