What is AR and Why Should You be Using It?

by Brandie P

Augmented reality, more succinctly known as simply AR, is a trending sales and marketing strategy all brands should know about. Today’s marketing is technology driven and greatly dependent on mobile access, and AR is a way for you as a business owner to keep pace with these updates in the industry and offer your customers what they want. By utilizing AR, you can effectively allow your customers to not only see your product, but experience what it would be like to use it in reality, hence the name. The following is more information on AR and why you should be using it as part of a comprehensive marketing strategy:

Why You Should be Using AR as Part of Your Marketing Strategy

AR Lets Customers Try Before They Buy

The concept of “try before you buy” isn’t new. In fact, it’s as old as sales itself. Just consider test drives in the automobile industry, cosmetic samples in the makeup industry and fitting rooms in the clothing arena and you see proof that “try before you buy” is important to customers and always has been. Unfortunately, making this a reality in all industries hasn’t always been possible. Today, with the help of AR, even companies with only an online presence can let their customers “try before you buy.” AR allows customers to try on makeup virtually, see what an outfit would look like on them or even see what a specific home décor item would look like in their home. This, in turn, allows you as a business to stock less because you don’t have to provide hundreds or thousands of options to customers any longer, when you provide them a virtual look. They can try several options without you ever having to stock said item. You only order what is desired by your customer. This Forbes article explains how Facebook and Ikea in particular are utilizing AR to their advantage.

AR Gives Consumers Touring and Placement Experience

There are additional brands that have utilized AR to create a virtual experience for their customers, showing them what to expect when visiting said location. For example, StubHub uses a form of AR that allows their customers to see the stadium in which they are buying tickets to an event in a 3D display. This gives fans the ability to see the exact view they will experience from a specific seat within a stadium. Starbucks has also put AR to good use. They now allow site visitors to experience a virtual tour of a coffee shop. The tool is designed to provide supplemental information via the tour, improving customer experience at the physical site.

AR Creates a Buzz

Although it has been around for some time, AR is still new for many people. This means you can create a bit of buzz around your brand by giving your customers the fun experience of using AR to see your product or service, virtually. If you have never provided this type of technology to your clients, offering AR can elevate their opinion of your brand.

AR Allows You to Give Even More Information

Another way AR can boost your current marketing strategy is giving you the ability to communicate more effectively with your customers. For example, within a brochure, you can embed a scan code. When scanned, clients are able to see a video that highlights your brand, product, service or other information you want to share. This, of course, is vastly more effective than static text on a plain brochure. Business cards can be altered in the same way to further communicate with potential customers, beyond the printed words.

AR Means Customers Can Easily Customize

It seems everyone wants to customize everything these days. Thankfully, AR is an easy way for you to allow your clients to take an active role in product design. They can input their preferences, allowing for instant customization. The inclusion of AR within a broad marketing plan is extremely helpful for personalization and customization in particular.

AR Provides a New Way to Serve Customers

You can also use AR to provide tech support to your customers. Through the use of AR, your remote customer service becomes more responsive and interactive, leading to better customer experience. Using AR for customer support is still relatively new, but the businesses using it to provide additional customer support are noting promising results.

AR Smooths The B2B Customer/Vendor Experience

In years past, salespeople would be armed with only flyers or brochures, or perhaps a PowerPoint presentation when making their sales pitch. This was their only way to convey what their business offered. Conversely, AR can allow a business to showcase their whole product line in a virtual 360-degree fashion. As a result, choosing between sales teams becomes straight forward and the tug-of-war between customers’ expectations and vendor’s actual ability to meet said expectations is simplified.

Don’t be surprised to see AR used in ever-increasing amounts now through the next decade. As a forward-looking business owner, you should consider it for your own marketing purposes for the above reasons. Contact us today at WA to learn more about how we can help you create content you can utilize via AR.

 

 

Brandie P. has enjoyed practicing freelance writing as a profession for almost a decade. She believes well written content gives any website or business an edge over their competitors. Therefore, she strives to maintain a level of professionalism in her work that will consistently elevate her clients and hopefully increase their revenue, reach and even reputation. She is happy to work with you today on your next project and especially values making long-term client/writer relationships.


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