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1 September 2021

UK charities launch ‘Actionable Audio Ad’ smart speaker campaign with Octave Audio and Say It Now to drive donations

UK Charities Macmillan Cancer Support, NSPCC and Crisis have partnered with Octave Audio and Say It Now to launch a new targeted digital audio campaign on Alexa-operated devices to make donating easier than ever. The smart speaker technology invites listeners of Bauer Media stations such as Magic Radio and Greatest Hits Radio and News UK stations such as talkRADIO and Virgin Radio to send money instantly and securely through speech, reducing barriers and encouraging more people to donate.

The campaign follows recent research from Bauer which found that during the pandemic, 59% of audiences listened to more radio on their smart speakers than before, with 61% of them stating that they would continue this increased smart speaker listening now after restrictions have lifted. A Radiocentre report* also found that 72% of all audio entertainment time on Echo is spent listening to radio.

Furthermore, with a new study from Savanta** finding that the not-for-profit sector has been more likely than the private sector to have been negatively impacted – with greater proportions of charities reporting adverse impacts such as a decline in income and decreased donations – the initiative will provide the vital support the charities need at this time.

Listeners of the ads will be instructed to respond to the creative, prompting Alexa to begin the donation process and ask the audience how much they want to give. Once the listener has confirmed their amount, the donation will automatically be processed, with money being taken out directly through their Amazon Pay account.

In addition to making audience’s lives easier, the connected nature of the devices enables the direct effect of ad spend on user engagement to be measured, providing invaluable information for the charities too.

Anna-Lena Mikoteit, Product Strategy Lead, Octave Audio, said: “We’re delighted to be partnering with Say It Now to connect these incredible charities with targeted audiences across iconic Bauer and News UK brands. We believe this campaign will not only encourage new audience behaviours but also change the way brands work with voice activated technology via smart speakers going forward. It combines the opportunity around more consumers listening to radio digitally via smart speakers, Say It Now’s innovative tech, and our scaled reach together. We hope this campaign will increase donations and make a difference to those in need using the very best in digital innovation.”

Charlie Cadbury, CEO and Co-Founder of Say It Now, added: “Audio campaigns are now being engaged with ‘in the moment’ using the power of voice assistants. Having the unique response option on smart speaker devices opens new possibilities for lower funnel driven campaigns and showcases a brilliant option to utilise the power of audio on smart speaker devices.”

The campaign will last three months, with each charity’s creative airing for one month. Ads with Macmillan creative begins today.

*Radiocentre – Getting Vocal: How voice-activated devices are increasing radio listening and elevating audio branding

**Savanta – Top 100 Most Loved Charity Brands 2021


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For further press information, please contact:

Cat Martin – Bauer Media Communications Director (Radio)
E: M: 07932 746 363

Odelia Yu – Senior Commercial Communications Executive, Bauer Media

E: M: 07718124791

About Bauer Media UK:

Bauer Media UK reaches over 25 million UK consumers through a portfolio of world-class, multi-platform media and entertainment brands including heat, KISS, Grazia, Empire, Magic, Absolute Radio and the Hits Radio Brand Network. These brands offer commercial partners access to highly engaged audiences, with creative solutions underpinned by insight and instinct. Bauer Media UK is part of the Bauer Media Group, one of the world’s largest privately owned media businesses with media assets all over the globe.

About Say It Now

With a heritage of enterprise software delivery experience, Say It Now specialises in understanding natural language so that computers can talk to people in the same way that people converse with each other.  This helps brands and consumers to benefit from automated communications, which are becoming increasingly relevant as more people have smart speakers in their homes and are becoming comfortable and confident using them.

Launched in 2018, the company provides consulting and software development services to enable transactions and insights using voice assistants on smart speakers (Amazon Alexa and Google Home) and chatbots on messaging platforms such as Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp and SMS.

The company won the UK and European rounds of Amazon’s Alexa Cup competition and achieved the bronze medal in the final held at the end of July 2019.

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