The technological potentials and advancements of AI, AR and VR mark a shift to stand out in an increasingly crowded digital marketplace and reach younger generations. In recent months, we have seen brands take entertaining and interesting risks in infiltrating web3 technology into their marketing plans.
For example, Pedigree recently launched its first adoption event in the metaverse to test and learn with a both paid and organic approach, and ultimately build a presence in Web3. In addition to the digital world, the dog food company created a crypto wallet feature to collect online donations.
“As adoption rates go up and as consumers are using AR and VR, it’s going to be a natural place for marketers to shift their thinking and their dollars,” said Matt Mills, evp of creative at Fuel content studio. “The technology is becoming more democratised. And therefore the veil has been lifted from what it takes to do that.”
According to Mills, clients at Fuel are weaving tech-driven experimentation into social or production budgets associated with campaigns or big media spend moments. “If you already have a social media presence, layering augmented reality into that is not a tall order,” he said.
Furthermore, according to Robert Stone, head of Z3, Zeno Group’s Web3 and technology consultancy, anywhere from 5-30% of client ad budget is dedicated to experimenting and innovating in spaces like AR/VR.
Technologies like AR/VR and AI aren’t new, but they are becoming increasingly more important as Web3 comes into focus, and accessible via in-app created social media filters. More than 97 million people are expected to be augmented reality users by the end of this year, up from 89 million in 2022, according to eMarketer. And as adoption rates go up, marketers are following suit to get in early on the growth and stand out in a saturated digital marketplace.
Despite a struggling economy, investment in AR and AI is only set to continue. Mobile augmented reality advertising is set to take off in line with mobile ad spending hitting $195 million and mobile AR users hovering around 97 million in 2023, according to eMarketer predictions.
Most major web2 social platforms have already started investing into a web3 forward evolution. In recent years, Snap has honed in on its AR efforts, restructuring in hopes to make it as an AR company. Last spring, TikTok launched its own AR development platform via its Effect House. Virtual reality and AI, however, may take longer to reach mass adoption as advertisers continue to look for everyday marketing use cases outside of the metaverse and content generation, experts say.
Showcasing an awareness towards web3 and immersive AI fits nicely into brand awareness which has become a priority for many marketers as direct response marketing has become increasingly expensive and saturated with competitors. Adding an interactive element to digital campaigns can help marketers grab people’s attention, stopping them mid-scroll.