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Over the past few years, augmented reality (AR) has emerged as a powerful tool for brands to engage with consumers in ways previously unimaginable. From immersive experiences to interactive advertisements, AR campaigns have reshaped the landscape of marketing, captivating audiences and leaving a lasting impression.

So, what makes AR campaigns so impactful, how do they work, and what can your business, no matter of size or budget, do to get in on the effective marketing trend?

What is AR advertising?

AR is a form of digital marketing that uses technology to create interactive and engaging customer experiences. It can help deepen the user’s experience by entertaining them, providing more information about the brand, and helping them evaluate the product in their real life.

The idea is to reel users in with engaging content that puts them in the driver’s seat of their user experience, resulting in a more memorable campaign. Customers have said that they enjoy AR campaigns and are becoming reliant on them when making purchasing decisions – 56% of shoppers said that AR gives them more confidence about the quality of a product and 61% have said they prefer to shop with retailers that offer AR experiences.

What can my business use AR to achieve?

Entertain, Educate, Evaluate

There are three main areas where AR advertising really shines. That is to entertain, educate, and evaluate your audience. This is linked with the customer journey, so nailing all three will have you sailing into your customer’s hearts in real life.

  • When animating static objects and making them move, you’re adding a fresh and entertaining aspect to the ad, and encouraging users to stick around to check out what else your brand has to offer. 
  • Due to its immersive and interactive nature, AR is an effective medium to deliver information to your customer, providing them with direction, answers, and clarity like a static ad just couldn’t do. 
  • By keeping the real physical environment and backdrop, AR helps the user get a realistic preview and/or appearance of how the item or product may look in their real lives.
Key benefits of AR advertising

Create better user engagement 

Research shows that customers who used AR during their shopping session spent more time browsing and viewing more products compared to customer who didn’t. Take, for example, IKEA Place – an AR programme in IKEA’s app. It has aimed at simplifying the process of buying some big items. The app allows users to virtually place items into their homes, seeing first-hand how everything will look and feel, before committing to a purchase. By harnessing the power of AR, IKEA enhances the customer experience, making it more convenient and enjoyable. The app not only reduces the uncertainty associated with buying furniture online but also serves as a powerful marketing tool, driving engagement and increasing brand loyalty.

Source: ikea.com

Expand brand reach

Generation Z holds massive opportunity for businesses – their purchasing power is a whopping $450 billion and 74% of Gen Z users prefer shopping on their phones over other devices, so utilising AR on the apps they are already using is key. Snapchat is all the rage with the younger generation with nearly 60% of members being 13 – 24 years old.

Source: Snapchat.com

Sponsored lenses have become a staple of the platform’s advertising offerings, allowing brands to create interactive AR experiences that users can engage with and share with their friends. From animated characters to branded filters, sponsored lenses enable brands to seamlessly integrate themselves into the Snapchat user experience. By encouraging user participation and social sharing, these AR campaigns amplify brand awareness and generate buzz among Snapchat’s predominantly young and engaged user base.

Product visualisation

The beauty industry has been particularly successful with AR advertising. By creating virtual product application trials, customers had the chance to try on or test products before making a purchase. For instance, Sephora’s AR app, Virtual Makeup Artist, allows customers to try on makeup virtually, helping them find products that match their skin tone and preferences. With 63% of consumers saying that they believe that imagery is more important than product descriptions, it’s no surprise that 81% of shoppers say that they feel more confident when shopping with AR, and 20% say they will be more willing to pay more for products that they can first experience in AR.

AR has more benefits, like providing your business with data insights into the behaviour of consumers, providing an experience for those shoppers, and cross-platform accessibility. All of this can lead to increased view time, improved conversion rates and increased revenue for your business.

Small but impactful ways your business can harness the power of AR

You don’t have to be a tech wizard to be able to incorporate AR into your marketing strategy. It can be as simple as creating an interactive social media filter. This can be done with the right tools and some creativity.

Or try leveraging the location of your business with located-based AR. This can be used to engage your customers in specific physical locations by using something fun like an interactive map or scavenger hunt – with all roads leading back to your business. 

If you have a product that customers can try on, give them the option to do that virtually by using AR technology. Some options include Facebook’s Spark AR Studio, Snapchat’s Lens Studio, or Google’s ARCore and Apple’s ARKit

As with any marketing strategy, the crucial bit is defining your objectives and nailing them with clear goals and tracking capabilities. Finally, using data and analytics to check on the effectiveness of your campaign is key, so you can make the necessary adjustments quickly and easily.

AR for your business

In an era where the boundaries between the digital and physical worlds continue to blur, Augmented Reality is reshaping advertising as we know it, offering immersive journeys that captivate audiences like never before. The challenge is finding the most effective way to incorporate AR to create unforgettable brand interactions. An AR marketing strategy can elevate your brand and increase your performance.

We specialise in brand and performance marketing and can help your business reach new heights with AR technology, so send us a message and let’s chat about how we can help incorporate AR into your marketing strategy.


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