Stop copying me
Snapchat recently announced additions to its popular World Lenses augmented reality feature.
And since no one leaves baby in the corner, Mark Zuckerberg told audiences at Facebook’s F8 conference that new augmented reality features will be available through Facebook as well.
“But we already have those,” you may say, lamenting over the rise of dog-faced snaps as profile pictures. Well this is different, kind of. Snapchat’s new World Lens addition essentially places an object in your reality that you can interact with 3-D style. While the dog filter and other popular features move around with your face, the new images offer a 360 view.
After placing an object, users can move around and view it from different angles.
They’re essentially AR stickers you can anchor in your digital environment.
Right now, users can plop flowers, a rainbow, or words into their pictures and videos. If this seems a bit pointless, you’re not alone.
AR’s place in ads right now
According to eMarketer’s February 2017 survey of US Agency Executives, ten percent have no objective when recommending AR features in ad campaigns. Only 17.5 reported utilizing AR campaigns to drive up brand awareness. It’s mostly just for fun, with 67.5 noting their goal is simply to increase consumer engagement when using AR.
The more time someone spends on a platform, the more open they are to exploring different features.
This is how Snapchat has held me in its grip despite massive changes over the years. eMarketer principal analyst Cathy Boyle noted, “Experimentation with lenses has led to greater time spent using Snapchat, and I expect the new version of World Lenses will do the same.”
Keeping users interested promotes loyalty
Although marketers aren’t currently focusing major efforts on using augmented reality for campaigns, I think they’re just biding their time. Only 2.5 percent of Agency Executives said they use AR to drive up traffic.
Right now, it’s all about getting users familiar with AR features before introducing blatant advertising.
Facebook and Snapchat are both vying to be the most popular kid in school, amassing the most fans. Each platform wants users to go to them for information as often as possible, if not daily.
Part of this effort includes news features.
While Agency Executives said they only recommend implementing AR in video news features 2.5 percent of the time, this is likely to increase.
Millennials are increasingly using Snapchat to keep up with news. Likewise, Facebook is a huge news provider for those engaged in social media. Adding more AR features could keep users coming back for news that’s interesting as well as entertaining.
For now, advertisers are sticking to making people happy with AR features. Let’s enjoy that while it lasts. Facebook’s AR features are still in beta, but will probably move to their mobile version of Stories soon.
In the meantime, start brainstorming your next great marketing campaign featuring Snapchat’s adorable 3D rainbow.