Augmented (B2B) Reality

Now that companies like Layar are making big inroads into mobile, with apps that are simply installed on nearly any cellphone, it’s time for every B2B marketer to take a look at Augmented Reality as a way of enhancing engagement with customers and prospects.

Truth be told, deploying A/R in service of your business isn’t as daunting — or expensive — as you might think.  Solutions like Layar, and the digital creative and production platforms to build A/R models, are now off-the-shelf tech that any decent digital design agency or in-house department can work with.  The only limitation is imagination and commitment used in incorporating it.

That said, it’s important to use common sense and B2B marketing savvy in executing an A/R tactic.  A marketer who uses it only for shock value, for buzz-building, will quickly seem a one-trick pony if there’s no real value or authenticity behind it.  But deployed properly it can both dazzle and inform, and give your company a patina of bleeding-edge leadership.

Some implementations?

  • In event marketing, your company can “install” a geolocated virtual object like a 3D product model, movie or demo that’s integrated into your trade show presence — and can be as scalable as you want!
  • Put an A/R object right in a conference attendee’s hotel lobby, or conference room, or wherever you choose — viewable either through their smartphone or through another device you can provide, like a camera-enabled tablet carried by a brand ambassador.
  • As part of a promotion, virtual objects can be used any number of ways — as part of a virtual scavenger hunt, for example, that can enliven a convention or facilities visit.
  • In a presentation, it’s a unique way to present information, product demos or other content.
  • Advertising can benefit enormously — whether it’s a trade ad that’s online or in print that contains A/R features, or virtual billboards and signage.