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Are You Prepared for the New Wave of Digital Experiences?

February 14, 2018

 Augmented Reality Has Arrived. You Ready?

 

Well, we know it hasn’t JUST arrived. However, due to Apple releasing it’s new AR developer kit back in September (along with the IPhone X), the popularity of augmented reality has skyrocketed and it really does seem to be the next “big thing”. In Apple’s words:

 

“By blending digital objects and information with the environment around you, ARKit takes apps beyond the screen, freeing them to interact with the real world in entirely new ways.”

 

If you saw this launch, your head probably spun with possibilities. Whether you’re a marketer or a consumer, Apple has now given you a new medium to explore, the tools to make it easy, and inspiration from some of the best brands on the planet.

 

Those (now becoming “old school”) digital experiences you’ve been used to creating can now be fun digital immersions. Instead of telling someone why to visit your store, you can virtually put them on your sales floor. You can virtually put your products in their hands and show them how to use it and how it helps. You can let them virtually experience how much better/easier/more enjoyable life is after using your service, thus increasing sales and brand loyalty.

 

AR combines the best of Digital and Experiential

Digital advertising’s weakness is recall. We’re inundated with so much digital advertising that it’s difficult for something to cut through. On the flip side, experiential advertising’s challenge is cost, especially when it comes to locations and staff. With AR you can make an amazing impression, and all you need to rely on is your target audience having a smartphone. From there, with an augmented reality app, you can build a whole experience for your consumer without them having to leave their couch. Pretty cool right?

 

AR is THE Digital Marketing Trend of 2018

When Facebook bought Oculus VR for $2B in 2014, it was seen as a brilliant investment in the future. We all knew AR and VR’s (virtual reality) day was coming. We knew once the technology became accessible enough for the small business owner to take advantage that mass adoption would follow suit.

 

Well, we don’t have mass adoption… just yet. But thanks to the ARKit and the advances in mobile technology, small business owners are ready to go. They can add AR to their mobile content strategy, and they can find agency partners to bring their ideas to life. Also, since AR is just gaining momentum, especially with small businesses, now is the time to get in and get started. Stand out from your competitors with an AR experience for your consumers before this space becomes flooded like the internet has.

 

Five Cool Ways To Use AR

Decorating: IKEA’s AR offering lets people see what their homes would look like with IKEA furniture. For those less gifted in spatial relations or imagining what could be, it’s a game-changer. And yes, it makes perfect sense for a company like IKEA, but think about a small art gallery. Wouldn’t it be great to let customers see how a piece would look on their wall, right down to frame colour? You can do that with VR. Now imagine that same approach for a clothing store or a hairdresser. So cool!

 

Travelling: If we said you could go to Paris without leaving your couch, you’d probably opt to spend the extra money and go to Paris because there’s nothing like the real thing. But if we say you could get a virtual feel for a few of the neighbourhoods to see which one you’d want to stay in, that would probably help you out a lot. And if we were travel agents or a hotel booking website, that might be a fantastic value-add.

 

Eating: Imagine you own a restaurant. You expect your servers to describe the specials just so. Some nail it. Some don’t. But with AR, your servers could pull out their phones or tablets, virtually put the best versions of that day’s specials on the table in front of your guests and let your creativity speak for itself. If it looked good, of course they’d order it. You could then replicate this for the rest of the menu…and especially the dessert selection. Mmm.

 

Building: The construction industry will benefit from AR probably more than any other. Think about how much easier it will be for tradespeople to have a virtual display of what their clients want. And even before that, when the big machines like bulldozers and diggers are on-site, think about how much more accurate they’d be if they could superimpose the correct grading, distances and angles. Companies like Caterpillar are already fitting their high-end machines with AR capabilities, but now small contractors without big budgets can still jump in on the technology if they find the right development partner.

 

Playing: The Pokémon Go craze, short-lived as it was, left us with valuable learning about human behaviour and what people can be persuaded to do if it’s fun and different enough. Think about how many adults waked around cities chasing virtual monsters for points that didn’t mean anything. Now think about what you and your brand could get people to do. Is it a virtual scavenger hunt? Is it a meet up in a virtual lounge?

 

 

AR represents the future of marketing, and as of right now, it’s not overflooded and bombarding consumers like how Facebook and Instagram ads are becoming. Now is the time to invest and develop your AR experience to help set your brand apart and grow a larger follower base, before all other companies are doing so.

 

We understand not everyone is an app builder, or good at planning digital marketing strategies (especially for new trends) but that’s why we are here to help! If it’s something you’re ready to explore. contact us for a free consultation so that we can show you how to take your brand to the next level with AR

 

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