Star Performer: Oddcast
When the E*Trade Financial Group wanted to promote the talking baby commercial it was running during Super Bowl XLIV earlier this year, it turned to Oddcast to bring out an application named BabyMail. Using text-to-speech (TTS) and personalized avatar technology, BabyMail lets visitors to www.etradebabymail.com send email messages using voices that simulate baby talk. Users can pick one of the babies from the E*Trade commercials or upload their own baby pictures, type a message, pick a male or female voice, and then share it with whomever they want.
Oddcast’s technology has opened other opportunities for audience participation and entertainment. Another application, Text-to-Sing, lets audiences participate in virtual karaoke competitions by typing in lyrics that are sung aloud by the automated voice.
The 3D PhotoFace Avatar lets users create custom avatars by uploading a digital photo, and then scripting the avatar with TTS capabilities. The avatars can be added to corporate Web sites, as in a virtual Web greeter, or shared via email or social networks.
SitePal lets users easily create and add an animated speaking character to their Web sites, Flash applications, email, blogs, PowerPoint presentations, and eBay auctions, making them more personal and persuasive. To do so users can upload a photo, design their own avatars, or choose from the company’s model library. They also can add and update their characters’ voices any time over the phone or through their computers’ microphones by uploading a prerecorded audio file using Oddcast’s TTS feature, or by purchasing professional voice talent from the company.
Every month, more than 1 million Oddcast avatars are created and served worldwide, enabling small businesses to enhance their Web presence and improve business results, engage site visitors, reinforce a call to action, and increase site traffic, conversions, loyalty, and sales.
Besides E*Trade’s BabyMail, some other marketing campaigns that have already used Oddcast’s technology include Ford’s Theme Song-a-Tron, Careerbuilder’s Monk-e-Mail, and Tide’s Talking Stain.