While virtual reality apps and augmented reality aren’t new to the gaming world, these enhancements have been making headway in the marketing field in strides. With large companies like McDonald’s and Coca Cola using augmented reality advertising in successful marketing campaigns, the digital experience is taking on a new face.
Perhaps the two most successful AR platforms have been Snapchat’s facial recognition lenses and Pokemon Go. The marketing potential behind these platforms is unmistakable. The Pokemon Go phenomenon delivered $600 million in mobile revenue in its first 3 months,with companies like Apple and Facebook acknowledging the huge success of this platform and launching their own initiatives for augmented reality development. AR and VR is now expected to drive $108 billion by 2021, truly changing the trajectory of the future market.
Mark Zuckerberg, in his keynote at the 2017 F8 conference, named AR and VR initiatives at the top of his 10-year plan for Facebook, launching the Camera Effects Platform, a suite of augmented development tools built for the camera, and Facebook Spaces -- a VR social application.
While the potential for success in using these applications is evident, many marketers don’t know which platformto choose, or how to best implement a new technological channel into their marketing strategies. Making this decision is often further complicated by which type of integration would be most effective. Which businesses would benefit from virtual reality apps alone? What are the best ways to useaugmented reality apps?
The Benefits of Augmented Reality Marketing
Both VR and AR offer new opportunities for communication and connection. While VR is completely simulated, AR provides an interactive experience that blends the artificial with the real world. Using 3D imaging, AR uses markers and/or sensors to represent parts of a user’s environment and blend them with artificial augmentation.
A core benefit of augmented reality for marketers hinges on the opportunity to offer customized smartphone and tablet apps that provide a digital touchpoint for new or existing clients. This can be used in a variety of B2B and B2C connections, creating a new way for marketers to sample their products or services or make everyday business easier.
For marketers, these benefits span across every field. The e-commerce market can find a new platform for online shopping with virtual fitting rooms or facial recognition, complete with endless configurations of colors available in any given product. Traditional advertisers with printed materialscan gauge how many people read and interact with a brochureby creating an app that makes the graphics literally jump off the page.A manufacturer can accelerate the building processes at a factory with a new app, or corporate builders can map a commercial buildingand seamlessly analyze the structure withone simple application (something, in fact, we’ve done).
Mobile apps can:
Easily track how many people are interacting
Increase awareness of a brand, product, or service
Establish new relationships
Reach a younger audience
Make a labor-intensive job easier for internal teams
Simplify purchasing for potential buyers
The original idea behindAptera’sInteract feature was offered to representatives at Junior Achievement (JA). They approached Aptera looking for a cutting-edge way to speak to their studentswith an online app. It was intended as a demonstration of the technology that can be offered to JA’s audience: tech-savvy students, and has encouraged the JA leadership to envision other potential ways to use the app in the future.
After completing this project successfully, Aptera shifted the logic in this development to a new mobile AR application, one that can be customized for every client.It’s an example to students, teachers, and business owners of the potential behind using AR technology.
How it Works
Aptera Interact combines an augmented realitycard and an introductory video to engage and educate potential clients on a company, service, product, or initiative. Once the app is downloaded from the smartphone’s app store, a user can open the app and scan thecard complete with an AR tracker image to trigger a personal greeting.Here’s how to use the app:
Download Aptera Interact from your smartphone’s app store.
Open the app and press “Start Experience.”
Hold your phone up to an ar card or tracker image.
Watch the video directly from the app.
To see Aptera Interact work, download it for Android and use these sample AR cards:
Aptera Interact offers a variety of options to use AR technology, whatever a marketer’s goals may be. While we’ll be the first to admit that augmented reality has faced obstacles since its inception, we’re convinced (with the rest of the marketing world) that it will continue to enhance how we speak to our audience in enlightening and inspiring ways.
Laura is a writing professional with specialized experience in Social Media, blogging, and digital marketing strategies. She has a BA in Professional Writing from Taylor University and 4 years of experience as a freelance blogger, strategist and marketer. You can catch her on social media @Ladycordless or leave a comment on the blog below.