Are you sick and tired of hearing about AR and how your business needs to use it? Well, I’ve got news for you – if you can use Augmented reality technology in your business then you have to do so. Why? Because it boosts your revenue, increases engagement with your customers, and takes experiential shopping to the next level. But don’t just take my word for it, check out these four use cases of businesses that are thriving because of AR technology for all the proof you need.
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StubHub gets record sales by letting football fans see their seats before they buy them
Owned by eBay, StubHub is the largest online ticket marketplace on the planet – period. Offering something for both ticket sellers and buyers, StubHub is a billion dollar company and its success has been aided in recent years by Augmented Reality (AR). How? Let me explain.
In February 2019, StubHub added AR technology to its app to promote ticket sales for Super Bowl LII at the U.S. Bank Stadium. Using augmented reality, customers were able to view a 3D replica of the home of the Minnesota Vikings, along with the parking spaces near the stadium and seating arrangements. What this meant is that people were able to try the experience of Super Bowl LII before they bought a ticket – the video below shows you what StubHub’s customers were able to see:
The Super Bowl is the single biggest event in StubHub’s business calendar, as the company’s general manager of NFL business, Scott Jablonski, explains: “every year, this is our best-selling single event.” So, how successful was the 2018 Super Bowl for StubHub? According to StubHub’s 2018 Year in Live Experiences Report, the online business saw a 34% increase in ticket sales – not too shabby!
L’Oreal boosts online sales by using AR technology to let customers try on makeup
L’Oreal is one of the globe’s leading online and offline personal care brands, with its 2017 annual results showing revenue of $29.41 billion USD. Though well into its 100th year of existence, L’Oreal continues to move with the times and it’s one of the companies that is reaping the benefits of augmented reality. Curious? Allow me to peel back the makeup on L’Oreal’s use of AR.
In March 2015, L’Oreal launched Makeup Genius, the world’s first AR app that let people see what different makeup looked like on them in real-time – previous apps only used static models. Makeup Genius gave L’Oreal’s customers the ability to try on 4,500 different cosmetic products and within weeks it had been downloaded 10 million times, with the number now well over double that – checkout Makeup Genius below:
OK, so downloads are great but did the release of Makeup Genius lead to an increase in sales for L’Oreal? Absolutely. L’Oreal’s online sales have increased by between 5% and 8% since the launch of Makeup Genius, with the success of its use of AR highlighted by the March 2018 acquisition of AR beauty company Modiface. If you have a spare $995 USD you can download a case study that shows the success of Makeup Genius.
Magnolia Market use AR to bridge the gap between offline and online
If you’re a fan of home design and renovation TV shows, the names Chip and Joanna Gaines may already be familiar to you. Chip and Joanna host Fixer Upper, a series that sees the couple help people select a home before doing it up. Alongside Fixer Upper, Chip and Joanna run one of the most successful shopping complexes in the U.S. – Magnolia Market. Online home and lifestyle business Magnolia is one of the stars Magnolia Market and it’s used AR to help it shine brightly, as you’ll see below.
Magnolia Market has become a bigger attraction than the Alamo, with people traveling to its Waco, Texas home to get its unique experience. But the experiential USP of Magnolia Market presented Chip and Joanna with a problem – to take this online, Magnolia needed to replicate this experience – enter AR. Magnolia worked with Shopify Plus, using the ecommerce business’ AR app technology to create 3D models of its products for customers to project into their homes. These models are so realistic that you struggle to tell if they’re real or not – see below for an example:
It all looks lovely but has the use of AR helped Magnolia’s online business thrive? You betcha. Not only do Chip and Joanna have a net worth between $16 and $18 million USD as a result of their growing online brand, but their business success is having a positive impact on the Waco economy.
PEZ improved its share price by using AR technology to gamify its shopping experience
It’s always nice to see a mature business at the forefront of technology, which is why the use of AR by Austrian confectionery company PEZ is such a treat. Like most brands in the 21st Century, PEZ splits its business between online sales and in-store purchases. In 2018 PEZ launched the PEZ Play app to gamify its shopping experience, and I’ll now unwrap how that worked.
PEZ Play combines with one of six Candy Codes found inside PEZ’s refill packs – by scanning the Candy Code you enter PEZ World, an AR land which features an array of characters, challenges, and games. You get access to 13 minigames and you can share the results of your play on your social media channels, bringing an interactive approach to PEZ’s sales strategy. But the great thing about PEZ Play is that to get unlock its full gaming potential, you have to keep buying the refills until you have all six Candy Codes – see the brilliance of PEZ Play underneath:
While PEZ Play is a super addition to the use of AR by big businesses, the important question is did it work? I’ll let PEZ’s share price answer that. PEZ Play was released in the Spring of 2016, coming off the back of PEZ’s lowest monthly share price for over two years. Since the launch of PEZ Play, PEZ’s share price has been consistently higher than it was immediately prior to its release – see below for the proof:
Credit: Seeking Alpha
AR is a fantastic technology, one that broadens the possibilities of experiential shopping and interactive brand engagement. While StubHub, L’Oreal, Magnolia, and PEZ have all used AR in their own different ways, one thing is the same for all four businesses – they’ve seen a boost to their financials.
You may add AR technology to your business in a similar way to one of these four businesses, or you may give it a completely new spin. What’s important, though, is that you do use AR, because the evidence is that businesses that make it a part of their strategy are thriving.