The advent of Augmented Reality (AR) technology is revolutionizing the world of marketing. By helping brands blend digital and physical reality, AR enables marketing strategies that were previously considered science fiction. From IKEA’s AR app enabling customers to virtually place furniture in their homes to Pepsi’s unforgettable AR bus stop campaign, this immersive technology is transforming the marketing landscape in ways marketers have only just begun to explore.
As experts in using augmented reality for marketing, we’d love to share our knowledge with you and help our successes become your own. From award-winning activations for El Pollo Loco to collaborations with Purple and Anastasia, we continue to research and discover exciting ways to push the boundaries of modern creative tech with AR. Our most recent success captivated a large audience at this year’s San Diego Comic-Con where we collaborated with Fandom and the FDA to design, craft, and bring to life a towering 10-foot metal monster using creative fabrication enhanced by the magic of augmented reality.
If you’re looking for exciting new ways to put AR to use, you’re in luck, because we’re sharing eight of the most impactful ways AR is revolutionizing the marketing landscape today.
1. Enhance User Experiences with Augmented Reality
AR reshapes the realm of marketing experiences, effortlessly blending imagination with reality to craft interactive experiences that captivate users and hook your audience. From the moment someone encounters their first AR-enabled experience you can see wonder, surprise, and joy take shape, generating strong positive responses in most users. In fact, AR promotes double the engagement of non-AR marketing experiences according to G2’s most recent report.
2. AR Bridges Online and Offline Worlds
By merging digital and physical spaces, AR adds substantial immersion and depth to traditional marketing tactics. The critical success of our El Pollo Loco campaign owes much to the allure of rediscovering and experiencing time-lost murals from local artists and seeing history standing before you in real life. Pokémon GO was incredibly successful in large part because of the way it led players to explore outside their homes, merging their gaming experience with the real world around them. The AR gaming market alone is estimated to reach $33.5 billion by 2027.
Both of these experiences more easily tap into the hearts and minds of players and viewers alike, binding them to your brand and creating truly share-worthy experiences that drive word of mouth and leave potential customers craving a chance to try it themselves.
3. Personalize Your AR Marketing Strategies
AR makes personalized marketing a reality. Burger King’s “Burn That Ad” campaign used AR to allow users to virtually “burn” competitors’ ads in exchange for a free Whopper, demonstrating how AR can tailor marketing to individual consumer interactions. After all, what’s more personal than creating your own ad for the thing you crave – and all at the press of a button?
4. Leverage the Incredible Power of AR for Product Visualization
With AR seeing is believing, enabling customers to visualize products in their environment to encourage product engagement and purchasing. IKEA’s Place app leverages AR technology to let customers virtually place furniture in their space, helping them make confident buying decisions. Lego’s AR store displays are another prime example, where customers can scan a product box to reveal a 3D model of the finished product and see what they stand to create.
There is little better than having the end product speak for itself, and if a picture says a thousand words, then AR goes far beyond that.
5. Augmented Reality Increases Brand Awareness and Engagement
Innovative AR campaigns can create buzz and increase brand engagement. Pepsi’s AR bus stop campaign in London, which used AR to make it appear as though aliens and tigers were invading the city, generated significant social media buzz and increased brand visibility while making the brand more fun to engage with.
6. AR Was Made for Immersive Storytelling
AR offers compelling, immersive brand narratives. For instance, Jack Daniel’s AR app takes users on a virtual tour of its distillery, weaving a captivating brand story while promoting their lineup of products. Apps like this immerse consumers in an experience that can grip them from start to finish, easily leading to purchasing opportunities while visualizing stories, products, and history right in front of them.
Many marketing teams have come up with innovative ideas that previous marketing tactics simply couldn’t capture. What would it be like if you could bring your imagination, or even your customers’ imaginations, to life and share your brand’s story like never before? With AR, you can.
7. Drive More eCommerce Sales with Augmented Reality
AR is a game-changer for eCommerce, enhancing online shopping experiences while naturally driving up sales. Sephora’s Virtual Artist App uses AR to let customers “try on” makeup, and Warby Parker uses AR in their iPhone app’s Home Try-On mode to let customers see how different glasses might look.
Customers appreciate convenience, so the ability to get “hands-on” with your products from the comfort of their home is king in this arena. This allows users to imagine new possibilities from anywhere in the world, transforming traditional online shopping experiences into real-world novelties and driving significantly increased sales.
8. Acquire Valuable Data and Analytics from User Interactions
AR provides marketers with valuable data. Interactions with AR can yield insights about customer behavior, preferences, and engagement levels. With access to detailed analytics, these interactions can even reveal when different groups of customers are most active. This data helps brands refine their marketing strategies and deliver more targeted campaigns.
What’s next for AR?
As AR leads the charge in the ever-evolving world of digital marketing it offers unique and exciting ways to enhance customer experiences and craft more effective data-driven marketing strategies. Over 83 million consumers in the US use AR on a monthly basis and this number is growing rapidly. In fact, current projections indicate the augmented reality market will continue its meteoric rise and reach as high as $1109 billion by 2030.
As businesses continue to explore and innovate with these new AR marketing opportunities, we can only expect the bonds between brands and consumers to deepen and our marketing opportunities to continue to grow. Don’t make the mistake of discounting new technologies like AR, VR, and AI as passing trends, because these advances in creative technology are the future – and they are here to stay.
COGNITION is an interactive studio designed to enrich experiences by building creative technology with human empathy.