It took about 20 years for brands to spend more advertising money on digital media than their traditional counterparts. It’s easy to understand why. Digital media lets brands target the exact audience they want and automatically optimize campaigns based on their performance.
What digital ads tend to lack are the more human elements, which means that they aren’t able to keep our attention for very long or build emotional connections. This is especially true for younger audiences, who don’t like to be advertised to. The best way to capture younger audiences is to make them feel like they are participating in the ad-experience. That’s where AR steps in, blending the digital world with the physical one, giving the audience the driver seat.
A growing market
In the past year, we’ve seen an increasing number of companies unlock the power of AR, creating experiences that connect and engage us in new and exciting ways. When looking at the results, it’s easy to see why. Consumers spend more time with AR experiences compared to traditional digital ads, have higher levels of engagement, and show increased levels of purchase intent.
Advertisers have started to take notice. In the past year, we saw AR ad spend almost triple, growing from just over $500 million in 2019 to $1.4 billion in 2020 and there is no slowing down in sight. ARtillery estimates the market to be over $8 billion in 2024.
Driven by better results
AR ads are shown to resonate especially well with younger audiences. A campaign created to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the unification of Berlin, showed 70% higher message association from AR ads among age 18–24 audiences, compared to audiences aged 25 and older.
The technology has been successfully adopted by a range of different brands in several markets, from a food delivery company in India (Swiggy) to a Brooklyn-based sneaker company (GREATS). Swiggy recorded a 3.3 % increase in ad recall while GREATS managed to increase 3.4 X their brand lift, while simultaneously decrease their cost by 62 %
AR has also been used to launch albums and singles, Universal Music UK launched a Launching an augmented reality music experience on Facebook, which saw a 3 % increase in ad recall and a 1.6 % increase in awareness.
Capital Music used XR to build a musical pinball game for the launch of the new solo single by former One Direction singer Liam Payne. The initiative boosted awareness by 5.2 % and a 19 % increase in ad recall.
Featuring real people – WebAR Holograms
Industries that relied on live events, such as music, fashion, and sports, have come under a lot of pressure during the pandemic. That’s why we’ve seen an increase in the use of holograms in AR experiences. By using real people, captured as holograms, brands can transport musicians, models, and actors into our homes. Last year we saw Nike launch Virtual View in e-commerce channels, building a catalog of holograms using Nike apparel. Balenciaga decided to use holograms in their much acclaimed digital fashion show experience, Afterworld: The Age of Tomorrow. Verizon also published Holomojis, letting NFL fans celebrate touchdowns together with holograms of the athletes.
There’s no better way to bring real people into the digital world and AR experiences than using Holograms, and at Sense of Space we are building Sense XR Studio, a dedicated content creation tool to bring Holograms into WebAR, including all the infrastructure and technical challenges that come with it, so content creators from any background can tell their stories in AR in an interactive and engaging way.