The days of seeing a product in a magazine and then finding it in a store or online later to purchase it are over. Today’s consumers want what they want and they want it now. Waiting is not an option. With the new augmented reality and interactive print technologies from Layar, the wait is over.
Using augmented reality, Layar turns any print or flat page into an interactive storefront. After a customer has downloaded the free app onto their smart phone or tablet, they simply point their device at an ad in a magazine and click, and they are taken to the company’s online store or a video or a social media outlet.
Currently, this technology is being used extensively by Dutch companies, but is it now finding its way into North America. Over six million consumers in the US have downloaded the app and over twenty-seven million have worldwide.
What does this mean for the future of internet marketing and consumer buying? This technology blurs the line between print and online marketing. Marketing campaigns will be designed with an eye towards creating visually stimulating and eye popping ads that shake up the entire buying experience and encourage readers to move from the page to online immediately.
When one thinks of online marketing, social media comes to mind and the interaction between a company and its customers. Video certainly plays a part as well and connecting the social media to a website or store and moving your customers from one to the other has always been the goal. With Layar’s augmented reality, print ads can now be shared on social media and be completely interactive.
Consumers have always been susceptible to impulsive purchases. As advertisers push the limits of amplified reality, consumers will be able to buy anything they see at anytime from anywhere. As the Layar technology moves into books, not only will someone be able to purchase a book they see at their friend’s house, they would be able to buy items listed inside. For example, imagine the hero wears a certain brand of shirt. The brand name can be made interactive and before the reader gets to the next page or the hero saves the day, he or she can have purchased it.
The uses will be endless. Now when you read a review of a new restaurant and you will be able to click on it and immediately see video of the food, the restaurant itself, and even customer’s enjoying their meal and giving feedback.
The one area of concern companies will need to deal with is over saturation. When static pages become active with video, social media, and purchase options, keeping the consumer’s attention will be a challenge. Sensory overload and attention span will need to be considered when developing a marketing plan that includes interactive print.
Immediate purchases, augmented reality, and a closer connection with customers is the future. Performance Marketers will devour these new opportunities on a global scale. In time, there will be nowhere that a product cannot be bought or a video watched. It will be an exciting time, so don’t be left behind.
What instances have you seen interactive print being used in the last few months?