As the holiday season swiftly approaches, brands and marketers need innovative new ways to connect with their customers and cut through the noise in this busy season. Traditional marketing avenues have their place, but what if brands could offer an experience, not just another advertisement? That’s precisely where WebAR comes into play.
WebAR is a universally accessible tool redefining the holiday marketing landscape, enabling brands to move beyond the conventional and weave magical, immersive experiences that consumers won’t just see, but experience. Holiday marketing is no longer restricted to storefront decorations and traditional advertising channels. Instead, brands and marketers can turn to WebAR to add an immersive element to existing campaigns or to create completely new ones.
Dive in as we unwrap the potential of how WebAR can amplify holiday marketing campaigns, drive sales and create unforgettable immersive experiences for audiences everywhere.
Unwrap a new level of holiday engagement
The holidays are more than just a shopping frenzy; it’s often a critical time for brand storytelling, allowing for meaningful connections with customers. With WebAR, brands and agencies have the opportunity to connect with customers directly through the browser on their mobile devices, desktops and even magic mirrors. Connect with audiences anywhere and engage them with extraordinary, interactive experiences - all with no app required.
Last holiday season, Lush in collaboration with Aircards launched its “Snow Fairy” WebAR campaign that featured three unique experiences: a personalized gifting flow, a holiday-themed face filter and a fully immersive portal environment. Leveraging the cross-channel power of WebAR, the experience was distributed as both an in-store retail experience and across a variety of online channels. Each unique experience featured a connection to the next, delivering a fully immersive journey through snow-laden forests and into the enchanted world of the Snow Fairy. This led to an 18% clickthrough rate with the average time spent within the experience being over four minutes of dwell time. This high level of engagement is incredible when compared to online video ads that average about 20 seconds.
These types of experiences are not simply magical, they drive results. In fact, according to a report from Accenture, 50% of consumers better recall brands that engage them with immersive technologies and 47% say immersive technology makes them feel more connected with products. And, with the holiday marketing noise reaching its peak, having a standout approach is indispensable.
Let customers try before they buy - wherever they are
Traditionally, one could either shop in physical stores or online. WebAR melds these worlds, making the shopping experience more convenient and available wherever customers are. By using their smartphone cameras, customers can engage with digital versions of products overlaid on the world around them, be it trying out a new line of jewelry or seeing how a festive decor piece would look in their living room.
These types of experiences allow brands to provide an extremely personal and intimate online shopping experience that aims to increase conversions and reduce return rates. Take for instance Chilli Beans, the largest eyewear store in Latin America, which launched an AR virtual try-on experience that featured over 1,000 3D eyewear models for seven Chilli Beans Special Collections. Crafted by Buu Digital, customers could seamlessly access this WebAR try-on experience by simply navigating to the Chilli Beans website and selecting the try-on option available on specific sunglass product pages. Once activated, customers could see themselves wearing virtual replicas of the sunglasses and could compare how they look in the various styles before making a purchase. This led to a 48% increase in sales of sunglasses that relied on the virtual try-on experience.
Drive foot traffic and give consumers even more reason to visit in person
For retailers with brick-and-mortar outlets, WebAR isn’t merely an online tool. It's a strategy to drive foot traffic. By transforming real-world locations into interactive hubs via WebAR, brands can entice customers to physical stores. With cutting-edge tools like Lightship VPS for Web, brands can create AR content that is precisely tied to their store location and create AR promo codes or out-of-this-world holiday displays in WebAR. WebAR lets brands turn their holiday displays into larger-than-life installations that allow each customer to have a unique experience they can capture and share.
Take, for example, Coca-Cola which took the University of Southern California campus by storm with its Halloween Collection, transforming real-world vending machines into virtual treat dispensers. For three days, students could fill their virtual bags with a variety of goodies by visiting one of five AR-enabled vending machines located across campus.
To find these locations, students used the virtual map on the Coca-Cola Halloween Collection microsite and physically walked to each location. Upon activation, they entered a spooky alternate reality, explored the vending machine and claimed treats which included AR masks, Coachella tickets, Coca-Cola NFTs, Puma apparel and more. Students could visit each location daily, entering up to five times, creating urgency and encouraging return visits.
Created by VICE in collaboration with Unbound, this WebAR campaign allowed Coca-Cola to transform everyday locations into experiential destinations, capturing users' attention and encouraging them to return and engage with the branded content.
Unleash the holiday magic
The holiday season is an exciting time, filled with the magic of festivity and connection. WebAR magnifies this magic by offering brands a canvas to craft interactive, immersive experiences that resonate deeply with audiences. Whether it's through virtual showrooms, interactive games or a blend of physical and digital in-store experiences, WebAR opens up a realm of creativity and engagement that goes beyond traditional marketing avenues. Brands, agencies and marketers can use the 8th Wall platform to build WebAR into their holiday marketing strategies and foster richer connections that redefine digital engagement this festive season.