Social Media Advertising
Article | July 13, 2022
While brands have dabbled in augmented reality (AR) for years, 2020 marks the tipping point where it’s becoming an integral part of marketing strategy, helping create meaningful and emotional consumer connections.
AR has finally grown up; once infamous for gimmicks such as face filters on social media, it’s now a cross-platform tool to build truly interactive environments, compared to VR which requires a headset to create computer-aided stimuli. The figures tell us that the global market is expected to grow substantially from $13 billion this year to more than $67 billion by 2024. The technology is graduating from being used solely for entertainment to providing real-world value and utility for marketers through immersive and experiential opportunities. So – in the midst of a global pandemic – what makes this the perfect time for AR to come of age, and how can marketers make use of its unique attributes?
Extensive investment in the ecosystem is laying the foundations for AR’s long-awaited, mainstream emergence. Google and Apple’s mobile tech stacks, ARCore and ARKit, mean more than four billion smartphones across the world are already AR compatible, and Google now includes AR in mobile search. In addition, the imminent arrival of 5G will dramatically boost mobile connectivity, enabling developers and content creators to use approximately 100 times the bandwidth of 4G to build a new type of experiential, 3D environment where users can intuitively interact with the people, objects and information around them.
Alongside these tech developments, the global COVID-19 context is inevitably changing consumer needs and behaviors, increasing demand for the virtual, contactless experiences that can be achieved through AR. And in the near future, wearable tech such as AR spectacles will also join the party to propel evolution in the space even faster.
Here are four ways AR can be a game-changer for marketing in 2020:
Enabling product visualization
In a world where consumers order everything from clothes to cars online, marketers can harness AR to help shoppers visualize products in an interactive and immersive way that goes far beyond a static image or video. This could mean experiencing what it’s like to sit inside a dream car, watching AR panoramas unfold through the virtual windscreen, or seeing what a jacket looks like on the actual shopper, without them having to leave the house.
Augmented Reality enables consumers to explore customization options and the unique elements that a product can offer. Brands that utilize the technology witness up to 8x longer dwell times, as giving consumers control over their digital experiences boosts engagement levels. For instance, participants at an AR smartphone launch can virtually see and interact with detailed specifications and features of the device. AR is certainly not restricted to just online browsing – it has a real benefit in the physical world too, for instance helping shoppers in stores discover how and where the product was made, just by scanning a code –subsequently helping move them along their purchase journey.
Future-proofing education and development
AR enables a more sophisticated, discovery-based form of learning. For example, students in a classroom can engage with virtual, 3D objects to help grow their understanding of certain topics. Teaching concepts such as orbits in the solar system can be optimized using AR-powered, interactive models. Additionally, AR allows for the gamification of learning experiences, helping to boost knowledge retention through educational puzzles and treasure hunts.
The learning benefits of AR also extend beyond the classroom. In mechanical fields especially, the technology can train people how to complete tasks by superimposing the end result on the version the trainee is practicing with. Implementing AR in professional development cases has shown significant improvements to learning curves, creativity, and spatial awareness. In fact, according to a study by the National Training Laboratories, “learning by doing” has shown to increase learning retention rates by up to 75% compared to simply listening to a seminar or lecture. By progressing education onto understanding and experiencing, as opposed to reading and writing, AR offers huge benefits across the industry.
Invigorating interactive advertising
Product visualization, along with other attributes of AR, can be used to deliver interactive advertising experiences that truly connect with consumers and boost conversions by 40%. AR ad units drive far more engagement and dwell time than conventional media and can give digital display advertising a new lease of life. What’s more, the real-time interaction between user and ad enables advertisers to effectively measure the impact of their campaigns and optimize accordingly.
Advertisers have cautiously experimented with AR for years but they have largely added minor elements to traditional campaigns simply to ‘tick a box’. To make the most of AR’s capabilities and deliver real engagement, marketers need to take a different strategic approach and put this disruptive technology at the heart of their ad campaigns.
Superseding live events
At a time when social distancing makes live events and product launches problematic, AR can be used to digitally create immersive and emotionally-charged experiences that generate buzz around a brand. In fact, AR improves upon the in-person experience by allowing marketers to scale events beyond the natural boundaries of any physical location and enable hundreds of thousands of participants from all over the world to share the experience simultaneously. This will revolutionize how audiences engage with live music and sports events in particular, enabling unique forms of interaction.
By augmenting the user’s immediate environment with a digital presentation layer, AR allows users to interact with players and performers in a way that is not possible with a traditional passive offline event, and to be true participants rather than simply viewers. AR reduces the need for traditional physical events and paves the way for a new era of participative, immersive and scalable online experiences, with visceral and emotional engagement.
The perfect combination of tech evolution, advanced connectivity and contextual circumstance means this is the year AR really comes into its own. By taking advantage of product visualization, interactive advertising and immersive digital events, brands can leverage AR as a game-changer for marketing in 2020.
Advertiser Campaign Management
Article | August 12, 2022
The impact of COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, is being felt by millions of people across the globe. While nobody knows how long this period will last, I believe it's important for companies to try to find some semblance of normalcy. To do so, companies should consider all the ways they can continue to move forward with an eye toward empathy. This mindset comes with its own unique restrictions and challenges as human behaviors evolve. With the rise of social distancing and limits around public gatherings, people are moving away from live entertainment, such as movie theaters, plays, sporting events and concerts. Instead, they are spending more time streaming their favorite movies and shows, browsing social media, and playing video games from the comfort of their homes. In lieu of socializing at restaurants and bars, people are connecting with colleagues, friends and loved ones digitally, and many are doing their shopping via e-commerce.
Advertiser Campaign Management
Article | July 19, 2022
A few years ago, the word “influencer” meant something pretty different than what it represents today. In 2016, the Instagram-focused social media consumer probably pictured a wealthy ex-Bachelor contestant who took beach photos in a personalized floppy hat and sponsored weight loss tea. But in 2021, the creator economy has evolved to encompass a more relatable, diverse population. Average Joes have completely disrupted the influencer marketplace, and now that brands across all categories have an influencer marketing plan, they are competing to get their products and services in front of the eyes of loyal fanbases.
Ad Tech and Martech
Article | November 18, 2021
Video content is more important than ever from a marketing perspective, but the high profile status it has attained also brings challenges with it.
The main hurdle to overcome is that of creating compelling clips that outshine the competition in a marketplace that is already overflowing with attention-grabbing content.
With all that in mind, here are just a handful of strategies that will empower you when making promotional video content for your business or brand.
Use the right software tools
The video editing tools you choose will form the foundation of your content creation strategy, so it pays to give this plenty of thought and not to just stick with the same old package you have been using for years.
For example, leveraging collaborative video editing software could take your projects to the next level, not only in terms of creativity but also when it comes to compressing cycles of work.
If you can have multiple team members collaborating on the same project in unison, you can hit deadlines and capture the zeitgeist with your content, rather than seeing viral trends pass you by.
Choose types of content that serve your advertising aims
The extent to which your video content is able to engage and connect with your target audience will partly be determined by the format it takes. As such you have to choose wisely and avoid producing clips that don’t gel with your marketing goals.
For example, if your business makes a product that has practical applications, you could gain views and shares by making tutorial content that explains how best to use it.
On the other hand, if your business offers services within a particular industry, then you may earn more traction with videos that explain a particular aspect of the niche you occupy.
Both of these types of content provide value to viewers as well as being promotional, and can also remain relevant for long periods. The more evergreen your video content, the bigger the potential ROI.
Extrapolate ideas from your existing content
Working out what video content will hit home with your ideal demographic can feel like it involves a lot of guesswork, and a lot of risk-taking as a result.
However, you don’t have to go all-in on a concept for a video without knowing if it will hold water, because it is more than likely that you already have tried-and-tested ideas that have proven themselves and are ripe for video adaptation.