Verizon Media - Fun-filled format

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Consumers’ reactions to augmented reality (AR) experiences have been so positive that Verizon Media is pressing ahead with expanding its immersive advertising capabilities.

Quick read

➨ Launched in 2017, Moments is a premium full-screen native advertising platform that scales across Verizon Media’s mobile apps and web properties

➨ In September, the media business extended its AR capabilities to its native Moments format

The story

Jeff Lucas, head of North American sales and global client solutions at Verizon Media, says AR ads, such as those that the media business recently made available through its Moments platform, are “performing incredibly well”, with conversion rates in the 20% to 80% range.

Lucas continues: “Perhaps, this is because instead of being disruptive, AR ads are natively placed and interactive experiences that consumers can control and play with, instilling a positive feeling with the brand advertising.”

Launched in 2017, Moments is a premium full-screen native advertising platform that scales across Verizon Media’s mobile apps and web properties. In September, the media business extended its AR capabilities to its native Moments format.

With the new AR features, Verizon Media’s advertisers can now allow consumers to interact with, evaluate and test multiple products through their smartphone.

According to Verizon Media, users have complete control of each product’s digital AR experience, adjusting by size and position. Additionally, brands can flip the AR experience to a smartphone’s front-facing camera, unlocking new engagement opportunities with a collection of Face Features. Lucas comments: “Interactivity is what makes extended reality (XR) formats—like AR and virtual reality (VR)—so special. With our new AR features for Moments, for example, advertisers can now allow users to interact with, evaluate and test multiple products in their 3D environment through their smartphone camera and screen.”

“The user has complete control of each product’s digital AR experience, adjusting by size and position. Because of the interaction, you get a deep immersion and heightened brand awareness and affinity derived from the experience.”

The brands that Verizon Media partners with now understand the value of AR advertising, says Lucas. “Exploring a product digitally prior to purchase puts consumers in the driver’s seat. It’s actually like test-driving a car. It creates a greater sense of confidence in their purchase decisions.”

Lucas adds: “In fact, studies bear out that half of all shoppers are more likely to purchase a product if they can experience it online first.”

“XR ad formats enhance a brand’s experience on mobile. These formats allow consumers to visualise the brand’s products in real-world environments, seamlessly blending digital and physical spaces to make purchase decisions easier.”

“AR ads, in particular, eliminate the guesswork of whether or not a product will look right in the home, office, backyard, or other IRL space. This fun format helps consumers simulate the experience of having a tangible object like a piece of furniture appear right in front of them through their mobile device, combining utility with entertainment to increase sales and minimise returns.”

“In fact, one popular retailer ran an AR campaign with us and saw shoppers spending an average of 2.4 minutes interacting with their ads. Shoppers also felt better about their purchase decisions after exploring the AR ads, with 64% gaining more confidence after using the feature.”

Verizon Communication, meanwhile, is further developing its immersive tech capabilities with the acquisition of software, technology and other assets from startup Jaunt XR for an undisclosed sum of money.

No further details were revealed, but Jaunt XR focuses on “the scalable creation and distribution of volumetric video of humans”, according to a statement.

“We are thrilled with Verizon’s acquisition of Jaunt’s technology,” said Mitzi Reaugh, president and chief executive officer of Jaunt XR.

“The Jaunt team has built leading-edge software and we are excited for its next chapter with Verizon.”

Jaunt XR is assisting Verizon Communications with the transition of select portions of the software and technology for a brief period of time, the startup added in a statement. 

Image credit: Verizon

This article originally appeared in Issue 1 of VRWorldTech Magazine