2017 saw marketers finally realizing that Augmented Reality isn’t just a cool thing to do by itself. Instead the applications must have a good reason to exist and must be designed to meet some need of the target group - however small. Here are 5 of the best examples we saw.
- The Ultimate Get Well Card: Honda and RPA collaborated to create an augmented reality experience for the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation at the Children's Hospital of Orange County. The idea was to delight kids during the holiday season through an AR surprise. It earned them praise as a truly meaningful use of technology - not a gimmicky one that we have seen in the early years of AR.
- Gorillaz Augmented Reality App: Gorillaz is a band made up of make-believe band members. No surprise that AR is their chosen marketing channel when reuniting after a seven year hiatus. The app added elements from their latest album to the user’s real world surrounding to bring them into Gorillaz House. It not only won the Golden Lion at Cannes, but also connected with over 125,000 fans in 146 countries for the “house party” celebrating the new album, Humanz.
- Raw Space AR promotion: Beatie Wolfe was the first artist to use NFC-enabled album covers. Tapping on these with your phone took you to her website with a single from the website playing. In 2017, she became the first artist to do a AR-based live streaming music event. This was used to promote her latest album, Raw Space. She live streamed a 360-degree video from Bell Labs’ anechoic chamber - chamber without echoes, where she performed with AR characters created by Design IO.
- M&M’s AR Billboard: To launch their new flavor, M&M transformed twelve billboards into AR arcades that people could access using their smartphones. This campaign resulted in over 566 million customer impressions, according to ADWEEK.
- Grufallo Spotter: England’s Forestry Commission developed a Pokemon GO like game. But it had fun characters and activities from the famous picture book superimposed over the great outdoors. This not only got kids to explore the forests, but also taught them a few things about forest anmals in a fun environment.