Thought Leadership
  • Content marketing

Augmented Reality is coming to a screen near you

Tim Dodd
17th August 2018

AR functionality is coming to a platform near you very soon.

Facebook is offering its Augmented Reality (AR) studio to developers and advertisers to create effects to be used on the social platform, pushing consumers to interact with products and, in turn, increasing the uptake in AR

Facebook isn’t the first Silicon Valley tech giant to trial Augmented Reality, Google released the Google Glass in 2013, and Snapchat has been testing ‘Snap ads’, a form of advert that pushes the user to swipe up on an image that triggers a branded lens, much like Footlocker and Gatorade's Snap ad.

The social network acquired the face-swapping selfie filter app MSQRD in 2016, where it rolled out AR features across its various platforms. Building on the filters consumers are used to seeing on Instagram and Facebook stories, now retailers like Sephora, Nike and Kia are using the feature to highlight products by layering information on top of the world around the user. 

According to Ty Ahmad-Taylor, VP of product marketing for Facebook's global marketing solutions, people still have to go to shops to try products before they buy. He believes they still enjoy that experience but want to try it at home, with AR essentially "bridging the gap." 

But it’s not just social media platforms that are experimenting with the technology. Apple has recently filed a patent for an AR-powered windscreen system, aiming to build on the increase of autonomy in cars. Passengers will be able to make FaceTime calls and the windscreen will analyse 'personal comfort profiles'. Not only that, the autonomous car will potentially alter its driving style according to a passenger's profile and preferences. 

Bridging that gap and keeping the advert at the forefront of people's minds is key. According to a recent study by After Digital. Ads which generate interaction are more likely to make consumers feel like they are receiving a personal experience and can generate up to twice as many conversions as passive content. The survey also reported that 88% of marketers believe interactive experiences differentiate them positively from the competition. 

Will AR be the technology to begin to increase consumer interaction with adverts? Facebook certainly thinks so. The key is making it a more interactive and personal experience for the consumer. 

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