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Betaworks Session: Skill User Acquisition
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About NextView Ventures
We are high conviction, hand-on seed venture capitalists.
David Beisel RobGO LEE HOWER
Offices Initial Check Portfolio Consumer/B2B Follow-on
New York & Boston $500K-$1M in
50% / 50% 50% of fund
(acq. Twitter) (acq. Microsoft) (acq. Stratasys)
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I am on a thematic pursuit around #VoiceFirst computing,
as I believe we’re on the verge of the next technology wave.
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Voice Computing Market Map
In my attempt to map out the ecosystem...
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… I’ve learned the two primary challenges for skills developers &
entrepreneurs: monetization (which is coming!) and distribution.
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Enabling a Skill: Voice
Currently, there are two ways to enable an Alexa Skill:
#1 Invoke by directly speaking to Alexa.
• Be very deliberate about naming
• e,g, “opening bell” vs. “stock price”
• No longer need to directly “enable” – invocation-only creates
land rush for namespace
• Potentially try multiple skill names to see what naturally sticks best?
• Drive offline “awareness” to force voice prompting
• Brands have an initial unfair advantage, but functions can stick
User acquisition Marketing implications
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Enabling a Skill: via “Screen”
The other way to enable an Alexa Skill:
#2 On a screen via webpage or in-app.
• Each Skill’s landing page can be recipient of traffic
• “Skill Store Optimization” (like App Store Optimization) can
be effective use of resources
• Lo-fi brute force is meaningful, for now (and a while?)
• Cross-promote if you’ve created more than one Skill
User acquisition Marketing implications
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Market to Skill page, but funnel traffic through your own prior.
• Test paid traffic
• Even though loop won’t fully be
closed to calculate CPA, gain
• Depending on skill, best channels
will differ (paid search, Facebook)
• Voice is a popular search term =
spend time with Google Adwords
• Don’t fully cede to Amazon,
have landing page prior
• Content marketing and SEO to
build inertia over time
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Skill Store Optimization
Play the game with Skill Store Optimization (“SSO”).
• Have a strong skill that
will rate well, but
supercharge the launch
• Orchestrate at least ten
positive reviews from
• Your reviews are being
read by Amazon =
• Embed a review call-to-
action inside Skill
• Paid marketing can
reinforce with being
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Influence the Influencers
Navigate your way to the Amazon employees with influence.
• Skills that are unique or
showcase Alexa in novel
way are prioritized
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Creating more than one Skill & promote within your “network.”
• A great place to promote a
Skill is within another Skill
• Extending reach within context
for user to naturally try another
• Consider a suite of Skills
rather than just one
depending on functionality
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• Our “Platform” providing resources for entrepreneurs
• Our blog:
• Our award-winning “Traction” podcast:
• Our Twitter:
• My personal blog:
• My Twitter:
• Blog Posts:
• A Personal Voice Computing Map: http://nextview.vc/2iMa2WM
• Voice Computing in Enterprise: Inside & Out: http://nextview.vc/2ktTOmY
• Current Challenges in Voice Computing: http://nextview.vc/2kxGOvX
• The Ubiquity of Voice and the Venture Opportunity: http://nextview.vc/2pufwIZ
You can (and should!) connect with us…