Industry experts have long known that Augmented Reality is a powerful marketing tool, while in more recent times the Pokémon Go boom has made everyone understand the huge business impact of the technology.
There have been many businesses that have ridden the wave exploiting PokeStop and Pokémon gyms in order to attract a greater number of customers, and getting some success.
Pokémon Go, to be honest, is not the world’s most powerful implementation of Augmented Reality, although in its simplicity it was able to achieve unprecedented success.
Application scenarios of Augmented Reality in marketing are numerous and require a dedicated study.
Augmented Reality for print products
Although the digital revolution has dramatically changed the way we use information, still a relevant piece of information is conveyed through paper, such as newspapers, magazines, catalogs, flyers, books, etc …
Despite having lost ground to digital, paper products are still a powerful means of communication and this is confirmed by the McKinsey Global Media Report 2015 which basically highlights two trends: the first concerns the maturity of the print media (+ 1.7% growth from 2014 to 2019); the second a steady growth of the digital (+ 9.5% in the same period).
This suggests that these two seemingly distant worlds, can live well together, and indeed they can also cooperate. In fact, according to research by Digimarc, 75% of consumers think that digital media is a complement to paper, rather than a replacement.
Marketers from all sectors can think of innovative ways for presenting their products and services, combining greater clarity of the offer to a greater customer engagement. It has been demonstrated, according to the claim made by Lisa Hu, that using Augmented Reality you can get a dwell time 2.5 times higher than that of traditional media (TV, radio and newspapers).
To date, cases of successful Augmented Reality implementations in this area relate to, among others, the creation of immersive catalogs, magazines and books with AR.
Augmented Reality for events and trade shows
The promotional environment par excellence, for many companies, is that of fairs and events in general. These are special occasions for companies to show off theirs strengths and to try to engage visitors in order to convert them into customers or at least into leads.
In this context, companies focus a lot on entertainment, giving visitors the opportunity to try the products and to make the time spent at the stands a memorable experience.
The use cases of marketing actions with the support of Augmented Reality in this area are diverse, ranging from brochures and catalogs with immersive 3D visualization of the product, to the organization of contests and gaming experiences to engage and amaze visitors giving them a concrete idea of the real potential of the product.
Augmented Reality for packaging
A sub-set of paper products, to which more and more companies turn their attention to design marketing actions with Augmented Reality, is packaging.
What better time to engage the customer and to provide additional information on the product except when she is face to face with the package?
There are interesting use cases of interactive packaging that put people in a position to activate additional content or mini-games that come to life from a bottle of a soft drink, rather than from the foil of the chips of a fast food and so on.
The result is an increase in brand reputation and customer loyalty, because when customers are faced with a similar product, they tend to pick the more exciting purchase experience.
Augmented Reality for in-store experiences
The natural ability of Augmented Reality to expand people’s vision makes it particularly suited to design in-store marketing experiences, allowing retail companies to offer additional layers of information to the visitors.
This category of use cases includes indoor navigation to guide people in a particular area of the store, maybe to locate special deals; the display of products and information that is not physically present in the stores because of space limitations; the possibility to sort or read the data on the origin, understand the production process, watch a promotional video, etc …
These experiences can be enriched by the gamification of the buying process with premium and retention mechanisms.
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