Augmented reality (AR) has become a powerful tool in marketing — across industries, brands are recognizing the power and capabilities of AR Lenses, harnessing the power of the technology to offer current and potential customers a way to enhance the world around them. In collaboration with Snap Inc., MAGNA Media Trials — IPG MAGNA’s industry-leading research technology that assesses the effectiveness of new products and strategies — announced their latest study, “The Augmented Reality Playbook: Understanding the Role of AR in the Purchase Journey,” which aimed to uncover the real capabilities of AR ads, or Lenses, and understand the role these ads play in the consumer purchase journey.
MAGNA Media Trials carried out their research in five different markets: the US, Canada, Australia, Saudi Arabia, and France, and obtained from multiple brands across different verticals, including Levi’s and The LEGO Group. Different types of AR Lenses were tested to explore the potential of AR, including Shoppable AR Lenses, Gamified Entertainment Lenses, Interactive Entertainment Lenses, and strategies like World Facing Lenses, and Front Facing Lenses.
AR provides an immersive experience for advertisers on Snap, and the findings from this study further highlight how AR represents a differentiated opportunity for brands to reach the right audience when it matters most — all while driving meaningful business results.
Additionally, the study emphasized how the particular sequence of video ads and AR can play a crucial role in engagement. Testing within a multi-product campaign that began the sequence with a video ad and followed with interactive AR showed amplified impact on traditional metrics.
Ads featuring AR provide utility and help brands build deeper connections with consumers. Marketers should leverage this to differentiate their brand when it matters most.
- Consumers found AR ads to be significantly more informative (+5%) than pre-roll ads and more useful (+6%) than traditional pre-roll ads.1
- The study also uncovered that various types of tested AR ads helped consumers feel closer to the brand (1.3x more than pre-roll) and got them excited about the brand (1.15x more than pre-roll).1
AR ads play a unique role in each phase of the purchase journey — marketers shouldn’t view AR as an add-on, but rather an always-on tool to build and amplify brand messaging.
- For those early in the purchase journey, AR ads help capture consumers’ attention.
- For those in the consideration stage, AR ads can help establish positive opinions about a brand, leading consumers to think of the brand as more up-to-date and differentiated when it really matters.
- For those ready to purchase, AR ads are impactful throughout the branding funnel, but most importantly drive intent to take the next steps: bringing the brand top-of-mind, increasing brand favorability, and actively searching for the brand.
While AR can shape how consumers feel about brands, marketers should use different AR formats to achieve their desired outcomes.
- Shoppable AR Lenses trigger consumers at the end of their journey to take the next step, driving search intent (+8%).1
- Gamified Entertainment AR Lenses bring in a broader audience and differentiate consumers at the beginning of the purchase journey (+12%).1
- Interactive Entertainment AR Lenses are found to boost memorability (+9%) and brand perception — people in the middle of the purchase journey see the brand as more innovative (+9%) and those at the end see it as unique (+8%).1
Imagine your customers can place a piece of furniture in their living room or try on a pair of sunglasses without ever leaving the house — this ability to interact with products through World Facing AR Lenses impacts those in the middle of the journey and results in higher purchase intent (+8%) and builds relevance for the brand (+7%).1 Front-Facing AR Lenses help lift brand image for those closer to purchase,with a +5% lift in brand uniqueness and 4% lift in relevancy.1
AR should be strategically positioned in campaign sequencing as part of consumer’s exposure to the brand on the platform.
- When an AR ad is in the mix — rather than video-only assets — brands benefit directly, with a higher purchase intent (+6%) and brand preference (+6%).1
- Placing AR in the middle of video as a surprising, delightful element helps build brand perception.
Ready to get started and make augmented reality a part of your marketing toolkit? Reach out to your sales representative today.
For even more information on how to integrate AR into your media plan, read the infographic here.
1IPG Media Trials study commissioned by Snap Inc. Q4 2021–Q1 2022.