Allow Voice comments on your blog using Google Voice
Google Voice is an amazing service. Besides being a ‘One number for Life‘, there are many clever uses of Google Voice. FREE SMS, voicemail, voicemail transcripts, conference calling and low priced international calling etc. are the few things everyone knows.
One of the hidden feature which probably very few people know is the ability to embed Google Voice widget to your blog. Bloggers can use this widget to allow their visitors to call them without revealing their actual number. The visitors of the blog can call using this widget or they may leave a voicemail instead depending on the widget settings.
Now, you probably don’t know, but Google Voice also allows you to embed individual voice messages. Bloggers can use it to enable voice comments for the blog. It is obviously not the best strategy, but you may allow your readers to leave quick feedback on your blog posts. Let’s see how to achieve it.
How to enable Voice comments?
- Creating and customizing the widget:
- Create a Google Voice account if you don’t already have one. Or ask for invite from those who have it.
- Login to Google Voice account and go to “Settings -> Call Widgets”.
- Create a widget by simply filling up the information.
- Select ‘Send to Voicemail’ in ‘When receiving calls from this widget’ section.
- Record a ‘New Custom Greeting’ if you want or leave it default.
- Select ‘Off’ in call presentation section.
- That’s it. Your customized blog widget is ready.
- Save the changes and copy the embed code from the next screen.
- Using it for Voice Comments:
- You may modify your blog template to include this widget or link in your post footer.
- Or you may add it to your blog sidebar.
- Your blog visitor will be able to leave a voicemail to you using this widget.
- Once you get a voicemail, you should receive an email from Google Voice.
- Go to your Google Voice account to get the embed code for this voicemail.
- If your comment system support HTML, then copy and paste this code into it.
- You may also create a sidebar widget to show all voice comments at one place.
Now I am sure, you wouldn’t like to do it for every message you receive because the process itself is a little tedious. But at least you may use this method to embed the ones you like. At the very least your readers are now able to leave a voice comment and it is upto you how do you want to show them on your blog.
Surprisingly, no other service has provided this facility, otherwise voice comments can be very easily incorporated into blog using Google Voice like services. Users will not have to use computer microphone and headset to record the messages as they will be able to use their regular phone, which I guess the biggest hurdle in making someone leave a voice/audio comment. Hopefully DISQUS and JS-Kit will incorporate audio comments soon in their commenting system.
What do you think? Would you like a service that enables audio comments seamlessly in your blog. Is there any other service you already use to make this happen? Do let us know in comments. I would love to hear the feedback on this clever use of Google Voice service.