This project was developed as an online conversation approach to commemorate Anzac Day and content available at State Library of Queensland when Anzac Day events were cancelled due to Covid-19. State Library commissioned Alkira Software to develop the voice-activated application.
Be transported back in time with Anzac Stories, through the diaries of Australian war heroes past and contemporary stories from those in service.
Listen to moving memories from WWI, WWII and beyond curated by the State Library of Queensland for Anzac Square Memorial Galleries.
Request a poppy be laid at Anzac Square on your behalf, hear The Last Post and be led in a minute’s silence on Anzac Day.
State Library of Queensland
Anna Raunik – Executive Director, Content and Client Services
Linda Barron – Director, Visitor and Information Services
India Dixon – Anzac Square Visitor Services Officer
Bridie Lee – Coordinator, Marketing
Ray Guy – Founder / CTO
Ruth Drinkwater – CEO
Lee Mathers – GM
Paige Harkness – Partnerships / Conversation Designer
Dylan Tasler – Senior Developer
Bryce Woods – Developer
Eleanor Mills: – Developer / Conversation Designer
Luke Styne – Front End Developer
DJ Tasler – Quality Assurance
Alkira was given 3 weeks to produce a voice activation engagement to highlight historical and contemporary content from State Library’s collections. Additionally, to develop a method for audiences who were unable to visit the Galleries in person the opportunity to place a poppy on one of the over 200 plaques in the space.
This was also an opportunity for State Library to explore voice activation as a new service for people with a disability and for users who prefer voice to keyboard access.
Anzac Stories was developed as an innovative online opportunity to engage communities in lockdown during Covid-19 to Commemorate Differently.
The conversational application offers users an opportunity to ask for a poppy to be placed in Anzac Square Memorial Galleries, listen to the last post and a range of stories from State Library’s collections.
It was developed as an alternative to attending dawn Anzac Day services and/or Anzac Square Memorial Galleries.
It also provided the opportunity to connect with Queenslanders throughout the State who cannot visit Anzac Square.
The conversation application enabled State Library to explore new approaches to engage with communities and to expose our collections.
Accessing Anzac Stories is simple with activation of key phrases to voice assistant or smartphone/device.
Say ‘Launch Anzac Stories’ to hear a selection of oral histories from past and present serving members of the armed forces or stories retold from letters and diaries.
Say ‘Ask Anzac Stories to place a poppy’ and State Library staff will lay a poppy in Anzac Square Memorial Gallery or beside a memorial plaque of your choice. You can request email confirmation that your poppy has been placed, along with an image as a keepsake. Images of placed poppies will also appear on Anzac Square Memorial Gallery social media.
Say ‘Ask Anzac Stories to Play the Last Post’ to conduct a virtual service and observe a minute’s silence from home.
If you don’t already have an Alexa or Google Assistant-enabled device, you can still access the service by downloading the Amazon Alexa or the Google Assistant app onto your smartphone.
Users had the opportunity to request for an image of Anzac Square gallery and nominated plaque with poppy to be emailed to them.
This provided the opportunity for State Library to connect with users and forward information about Anzac Square and the collections at State Library
Marketing and Communication plan was developed an involved a range of activities
*Media release by the Premier of Queensland http://statements.qld.gov.au/Statement/2020/4/25/queenslanders-light-up-the-dawn
Media reports including
*Channel 9 News story Thursday 23 April 2020
*Advertisement of Commemorate Differently in Courier-Mail on Friday 24 April 2020
*ABC Radio (Brisbane and Gold Coast) interview 25 April 2020
*Enewsletters distributed by State Library of Queensland
*State Library of Queensland homepage feature
*Amazon /Alexa newsletter and feature
Measuring the success of the project between the 21 – 30 April
• 6,593 unique users
• 12,302 visits (sessions)
• 4,095 engagements with ‘Commemorate Differently” – to place a poppy, play an Anzac story or play the last post
• 265 requests for poppies to be laid at Anzac Square Memorial and Galleries
• People from all over Australia, as well as the USA, NZ and the UK request poppies – which is an exciting demonstration of reach
• People spent almost 6 minutes on average exploring the content which shows engagement levels were high
• High traffic to “Commemorate Differently” voice-activated tool from Amazon Alexa demonstrating the impact of Amazon support
Between 1 and 12 May there were 13,195 sessions and 9,026 demonstrating the ongoing engagement with Anzac Stories and the collection.
• No specific user details are captured, a deviceId is all that is captured unless the user provides their email address to have additional info sent (in this case a photo of a poppy or instructions on how to share)
• All connections are encrypted over SSL
• Incoming requests are validated to ensure communication with a valid provider e.g. Is the certificate sent by Alexa
• Backend APIs all use token authentication. This means only authenticated voicebots can communicate with our apis to retrieve user data.
• User data is stored securely in Azure cloud servers
Open to apps in all categories with updates and developments that truly enhance the user experience and take your app or service to another level.