How Augmented Reality Can Boost Your Sales
Augmented reality opens up a new realm of possibilities for tech enthusiasts like us. It allows us to seamlessly blend digital information into our physical reality, giving us the power to customize what we see, hear, and even feel. This technology has revolutionized the way we consume, and marketing is no exception.
Is this something entirely new or just better executed?
The roots of augmented reality trace back to the 1960s, when Ivan Sutherland, a computing pioneer, invented the "Head-Mounted Display" (HMD), a device that enabled users to view computer-generated images. By the 1980s, AR was being developed for military applications, such as combat pilot training.
By the 1990s, AR was making strides in commercial applications, including entertainment and education. In 1994, Atari released the "Virtual Boy" game, which used AR to create a virtual reality experience on a portable device. While it wasn't a massive success, it paved the way for more advanced developments.
The 2000s saw the emergence of AR applications for mobile devices. In 2009, Layar introduced the first AR app for smartphones, allowing users to overlay information in the real world, such as directions and business reviews.
In the 2010s, AR started being incorporated into marketing strategies. In 2011, IKEA launched an AR app enabling users to visualize how furniture would look in their homes before making a purchase.
Since then, augmented reality has been used in marketing in various ways, including:
- Product Testing: AR enables users to virtually try out products before buying them. For instance, Sephora offers an AR app that allows users to test makeup virtually.
- Learning: AR creates interactive and immersive learning experiences. NASA, for example, provides an AR app that lets users explore the Solar System virtually.
- Entertainment: AR can be used to develop immersive games and entertainment experiences. Think back to the craze of Pokémon Go, where users could capture Pokémon in the real world.
What are the benefits of Augmented Reality for marketing?
Augmented reality marketing campaigns offer several benefits, including:
- Enhanced Customer Experience:
AR makes products and services more captivating and engaging, thereby improving the overall customer experience.
- Lead Generation:
AR helps generate leads by educating customers about products and services.
- Increased Sales:
AR contributes to higher sales by assisting customers in making informed purchasing decisions.
Some notable augmented reality campaigns have been executed by renowned brands, including:
- L'Oréal Virtual Try-On:
L'Oréal's campaign allows users to virtually test makeup, which significantly boosts sales.
- Starbucks AR Game:
Starbucks engaged users with an AR game where they had to catch virtual coffee cups, effectively promoting their rewards app.
- Nike AR City:
Nike's campaign allowed users to explore a virtual city in search of collectible items, successfully promoting their products.
Augmented reality is a technology with the potential to transform consumer experiences and marketing strategies. AR marketing campaigns offer numerous advantages, such as enhancing customer experiences, generating leads, and increasing sales. As augmented reality technology continues to evolve, we can expect to see more innovative marketing campaigns utilizing this technology.
Written by Ivan Ambríz Galar