How Businesses Use Augmented Reality to Promote Themselves: Top 10 AR Apps
The consumer in the 21st century is spoiled by a variety of advertising formats, so his attention is increasingly difficult to attract to a particular product. However, with the help of AR, this problem can be solved in a new way. Due to the wow-effect that augmented reality introduces to advertising, it is possible to create an attractive format of the interactive ad. And world-famous brands have already begun to use all the possibilities of augmented reality in their advertising campaigns. So, let’s have a closer look!
With the advent of augmented reality, companies have discovered new ways to convey the value of the product to their potential consumers. Augmented reality in advertising and marketing will entice customers to the exciting world, fill the flat surfaces of leaflets and billboards with interactive content, draw them into interaction with the brand and allow to make the service even more convenient.
Virtual shops from Tesco
A wonderful example of the use of augmented reality in outdoor advertising, embodied by Tesco, a network of supermarkets. Instead of opening a new store, they created a virtual one… in the subway. Thus, passersby could order food delivery via a smartphone or large screens, waiting for the train.
As a result sales has grown by 130% and over 76% of new accounts were registered — without substantial investments.
Shopping with augmented reality in Zara stores
Spanish clothing brand Zara launched a project to introduce augmented reality technology at 120 points of sale. Now through a special mobile application Zara AR, anyone who points a smartphone on a shop window or a designated sensor, can admire the virtual models which advertise clothes and who will “come to life” right in front of you on the phone screen.
Virtual models dressed in selected Zara products can dance, defile and even chat. By clicking on the image of the unit you like you are able to buy it. The functionality of the application also allows users to view images while using the online store.
IKEA’s AR application for choosing furniture
IKEA company was one of the first to figure out how to make advantage of augmented reality by providing a cool addon to their catalog. Now the potential buyer can quickly understand how the new sofa or armchair would fit into the interior of the apartment, take a picture of the new environment, and place an order.
At Ikea Place, users can choose from 2,000 3D products based on furniture type or designer collections and place them in the environment. When the user opens the application, the chat bot asks: “So, will we try to place new furniture here?”, and then requests for the camera access. After this, the application scans the floor in front of the user so that the user can then lift, move and rotate the furniture around the room.
In the application, you can also change the size of objects, take pictures and use pictures to buy selected furniture. Such a program will help to save our money on the purchase of furniture, which in the end may be inappropriate for the created interior. The benefits are obvious!
Realtime translation from Google Translator
Google has developed a translator program that is nowhere near as simple as we knew translation recently. This is especially true of the mobile application version for devices on the Android platform.
As before, with the help of Google translator, we can translate texts in unfamiliar languages through manual input. The program is able to recognize more than 100 different languages in the world. These features are imposed by means of the camera of a smartphone. It is enough to point the camera at the text and it will be instantly translated into your language of choice. By the way, a similar opportunity is available from Samsung in their smartphones with Bixby Vision support. It is very convenient, for example, when traveling to another country.
Virtual test drive from Volvo
Volvo has launched a racing augmented reality game, timed to coincide with the release of a new car model S60.
And although this is not the most successful example of the use of augmented reality (virtual objects do not complement real ones, they only fit on top), the effect of novelty and new user experience worked perfectly. The company has broken all records — traffic to the website increased by 293%, the number of clicks was 192,319, and the percentage of involvement was 9.6%. The intention to make a purchase increased by 88%, and brand awareness increased by 240%. Due to the gaming format of the application, the company also managed to attract the attention of the younger audience to the brand aka potential future owners of Volvo cars.
Augmented Reality glasses for drivers from BMW
BMW has also given its potential customers the opportunity to literally “touch” the new car, look at it from all sides, examine it down to the smallest details. BMW uses augmented reality to help customers visualize and adapt the product to their surroundings.
Using BMW experience as an example, we can see how an application with augmented reality provides the desired emotional experience even for those who cannot afford a car, thus acting as a marketing tool for the company. This is a win-win strategy for brands, which means it will soon become more and more popular.
Also, the research division of the BMW Group, which owns the MINI, using the example of English micromachines, demonstrated what the augmented reality glasses for drivers could be. According to the company’s press release, MINI Augmented Vision will project several types of data into the driver’s field of vision:
Navigation — you can select your destination before getting into the car, and then follow the navigator’s directions while driving;
First/last mile — navigation from car to destination point or search for a car;
HUD functions — display of vehicle condition data, including speed, warnings and other things, in the direct view of the driver just above the steering wheel, without blocking the road view;
Navigation based on the road situation and points of interest — visualization of directions on the road and the ability to see the nearest necessary places, such as parking, while the driver’s attention is fully focused on the road;
Messages — the driver will receive notifications about all messages, and the computer will read them out loud if necessary;
“X-ray vision” — an overview of the traffic situation via cameras through opaque car parts, such as racks, hood and doors; augmented parking — the image from the parking sensor camera can be shown in glasses, which will improve the perception of the environment by the driver and provide additional security.
Three-dimensional cosmetics catalogue from Faberlic
The Faberlic has introduced a catalog that offers their clients to look at the product in full size, to turn it in different directions – and we all know how the appearance of the product is important for women, they choose with their eyes. In addition, you can estimate the size of product — which is not always clear from the photo, read the composition on the label and immediately place an order.
AR View feature from Amazon
Amazon has introduced the function of augmented reality for its iOS-application, which allows you to see how goods look in your interior before buying them for your home. The latest Amazon client update for iOS has added support for the ARKit augmented reality engine. It offers a potential buyer to dispel all doubts about the product, after seeing its realistic three-dimensional models in real surroundings. Viewing is already available for thousands of products.
The AR View function is activated by clicking on the camera icon in the Amazon application, after which you can select any product from the relevant categories: furniture, kitchenware, home decor. Americans were not the first to apply the technology (for example, the Swedes from IKEA were long ahead of them), but their participation is a very weighty precedent that can provoke other retailers to take similar steps.
Augmented reality application for Coca-Cola’s product coordinators
Coca Cola is actively using augmented reality in the areas of B2C, B2B, as well as at its charity events. It can be said that the company has almost fully mastered the technology of augmented reality in its business processes. For example, the company has created its own application with augmented reality for agents who coordinate with the stores the supply of branded refrigerators for the same-name drink.
Thus, agents of the company have the opportunity to show how the equipment will fit into the general interior of the store, and the store owner can pre-think where to place it. For agents, a complete catalog of equipment is available, which they can at any time demonstrate and conduct a presentation.
Augmented Reality technology from Shazam
The Shazam music recognition application has the opportunity to build an augmented reality world around practically any of the company’s marketing materials: product packaging, POS, advertising format, events, etc.
All you need is to scan the Shazam code using the application. The technology allows you to complement the surrounding space with 3D-animation, enhanced product visualization, mini-games and 360-video. The technology partner of Shazam is Zappar. Shazam AR is available to all users of the application for iOS and Android. Shazam already has image and audio recognition. The service can turn posters, product packaging, print media into interactive content.
The main advertising solution from Shazam is Visual Recognition — the technology, which is designed to enrich user contact with the main carrier of brand communication — packaging, and the built-in augmented reality engine allows you to maximize contact with the product.
How much does it cost to develop a simple augmented reality application?
Price for the development of a simple augmented reality application without 3D modeling is starting from $5000. Of course, this is an approximate figure and the exact cost of the augmented reality application development will be calculated based on the required functionality. On the graph below, you can see the approximate distribution of efforts.
So, the bottom line is that AR gives retailers new opportunities by helping consumers to remember the brand and increase both customer loyalty and brand awareness. Viewing a product in AR on your own gadgets is a kind of trust game with consumers. It seems that you are in some sense possessing a product, and not just looking at it on a web page. This is due to the more tactile features of augmented reality.
More than 52% of consumers perceive brands that use the latest innovative technologies to promote their products as more reliable companies and market leaders, rather than those that do not. Augmented reality offers numerous opportunities to make people not only talk about you or remember you, but also get wonderful emotions and unforgettable impressions. The key idea of using augmented reality in your marketing campaigns is to make advertising special for people, instead of plain talking about a brand or product.