In the present scenario, when technology is growing at an unstoppable rate and smartphone ownership is touching record levels, it is not at all surprising to see that mobile apps of all types are experiencing a boom. The marketing industry is also continuously adapting technology to speak to the audience. One of these trending technologies that supplement the live, real environment with computer-generated inputs to enhance user experience is the Augmented Reality (AR). Over the past few years, AR has shown substantial growth and has hurled tech innovation into the mainstream with apps such as Snapchat, Pokemon Go, Ikea Place, etc. AR has also demonstrated the great potential it has, especially for the marketing industry and leading digital markets are discussing ways to harness the potential of AR in mobile app marketing. An AR app development company that stays updated and uses AR for providing mobile app marketing solutions for different businesses can highly benefit from this technology while providing massive profits to their clients.
Meaning of Augmented Reality (AR)
In simple words, it is the superimposition of virtual images or objects, generated through computer/mobile, on real-world, physical landscapes, using an enhanced camera and GPS system. The virtual graphics created using computers can transform the entire experience of a particular environment.
Working of AR
sing AR, a virtual object is added to a real-world scene, and it can be visualized as a part of the real scene. Many upcoming businesses and brands that are still trying to find their feet in their industry are considering AR as part of their marketing strategy. AR can boost their marketing greatly as it is an innovative way to engage customers. For instance, using Ikea Place, users can virtually check the products by placing them in their home. The interactivity offered by Ikea builds relationships and encourages customers to make the purchase.
Advantages of AR for mobile App marketing
AR is a great option for mobile marketing as both the business and the customers benefit from it. The marketing content produced using AR has the power to change the way customers feel and encourage transactions that are beneficial for both the buyer and the seller. The major advantages of using AR for marketing are:
- Brand recognition is enhanced: To increase awareness about your brand, you can use AR based ads to engage people as people are drawn to the innovative visuals presented in these ads. Though people may know your brand, they are likely to be more impressed and involved after interacting with a small AR game.
- Customer experience and journey is facilitated: AR makes the customers journey simple and interesting. They are guided on the navigation process in a natural intuitive way to complete their activities, while also discovering new things in the process.
- Local and in-store marketing options increased: If a business wants to advertise locally and increase the footfall in its traditional offline sales outlets, location-based AR needs to be incorporated in the marketing strategy to facilitate the store search. Marker-based solutions further enliven the customer’s experience once they come to the offline store.
- Personalisation of experience: AR gives the customers a feeling that the business knows them personally and had been waiting for them by providing them information based on their needs and preferences, calling by their name, suggesting products appropriate to their gender and age, etc.
- Try before use apps engage the customers: You need to try the product to check if it fits your style, to finalize a deal. You can try everything ranging from clothes, shoes, nailpaints, tattoos, beds and sofas for your home, etc. using these AR-based apps.
- Content quality improved: AR can help the customers save both time and money by providing the information about the special offers available in the store, the very moment they enter the door. Thus, it is now possible to discover more content on the phone and avoid wasting much time in exploring the store.
- Retention rates increased: If a user enjoys using your app, there are minimal chances that they won’t return. With the playful manner in which AR interacts with the users, you can rest assured about the retention of your app and the ads presented in their mind for a long time.
- Buzz effect created: Last but not the least, when people have actually enjoyed using your app, they are sure to share it on their favourite social network thereby increasing the popularity of the business.
Challenges faced by AR in marketing
After being clear about its objectives, an AR app development company needs to make it seem aware of the difficulties that have to be faced and overcome in AR-driven advertising. Here are the three significant challenges that need to be dealt with for successful AR marketing:
- The complexity of development: If your company is having an in-house development team, you need to include AR developers in your team as the development of AR apps is not a very straightforward process, though the recent launch of Google’s ARCore SDKs and Apple’s ARKit has eased the process. Skilled AR coders will, however, be needed if you want to create apps that will be compatible with older versions of iOS and Android. In the absence of internal resources, you need to take help from a development company that specializes or has ample experience in AR software engineering.
- Checking out the readiness of the platform: Most Android and iOS devices being used currently do not possess the capabilities to unlock the full potential of AR. Therefore, this is not the right time to use AR for mobile advertising as a major portion of your audience is limited and cannot appreciate the latest levels of AR sophistication. With the launch of latest iPhone and flagship Android phones, having the necessary hardware and software, these high-quality AR features will be supported by smartphone platforms.
- App adoption by the users: Some form of hardware with an element of visual functionality is needed for AR software as it overlays digital data onto a person’s view of the real world. Thus, the users need to be persuaded for downloading the app for experiencing the AR benefits. For this, you need to use AR for marketing your AR app prior to marketing your products and services that lie within that AR app. This makes the user adoption a complicated process that the AR app markets need to deal with.
With their wide scope of marketing for different industries, AR apps are significantly in demand. Though the advantages of marketing through AR apps overpower the challenges, a particular business needs to evaluate both and chalk out a marketing strategy that best suits them. By using the best tools available in the industry impressive AR effects can be created to involve the users in a wonderful experience. The try before use feature provided by AR apps is highly in demand by different businesses and users and in no time, will be used more frequently by apps. Though the AR technology is still evolving, it will be beneficial to get involved with it from the beginning itself and grow with it.