Be honest: how much time have you spent playing around and trying out all the different camera effects on Facebook Messenger? Selfies are so 2016 – now, augmented reality is all the rage. It’s fun, it engages the user, and makes them want to keep trying out all the different customizations and changes to their appearance and surroundings – all virtual, of course. Facebook, Snapchat, and other similar social networks have generated amazing results by using Augmented Reality Camera Effects; in fact, I’m one of many to say that much of Snapchat’s success relies on their amazing camera options.
But, why should only the biggest brands in the world get to use this technology?
First things first…what exactly is AR?
AR stands for augmented reality – basically, a way to blend fantasy and reality. A way to use your real environment to augment certain elements in real time.
Or, an even easier way to explain this – it’s Pokemon Go. It’s Camera Effects that turn you from your normal self into a part of nature:
It’s technology that uses your real self and your real environment to enhance certain elements that turn you into someone different or transport you to a different place.
Or – a way to make your selfies cooler and your Facebook video calls more entertaining.
How is this relevant to businesses?
Smartphones are extremely widespread and their number is only going to grow. There haven’t been that many major changes to smartphones in the past few years – although cameras get better and better every year – but there has been one technology that has made a huge impact on smartphone users: augmented reality. It’s changing smartphone games and it’s definitely changed how we use our phone cameras.
Using augmented reality as a business can help you promote your brand in a unique way – one that most of your competitors haven’t caught onto yet. It’s an amazing tool for raising brand awareness, boosting engagement on social channels, increasing your audience and reach, and ultimately, all leading to better sales overall.
Branded AR experiences can help you with:
- Brand awareness: if you create an amazing experience, people will want to try it out; and if you brand an effect, that can lead to great exposure for a business
- Marketing your products: for example, you could create a game that features your products
- It’s a great opportunity for some amazing UGC: user-generated content – or UGC, for short – is pretty much word-of-mouth on steroids (since it’s digital, more people will see it). AR is the perfect tool to use to generate tonnes of amazing UGC for your brand: if people love your camera effect and want to show it off, you’ll be able to get amazing reach.
- It’s a way for your audience to interact directly with the brand in a fun way and share the experience with the world
To give you an idea of how immensely successful branded Camera Effects can be, Crocs actually recently launched an AR effect where the user could wear a Croc shoe on their head. It’s funny and fun – and it leads to 4 million unique users in the first 10 days since its launch on Snapchat.
In theory, the lens started out as a cool way to get people to participate in Crocs’ recent competition; in practice though, people liked it so much that they’re not even all uploading their selfies to the competition. But what they are all doing is providing amazing exposure for Crocs on Snapchat in a fun and engaging way.
What is Lens That?
Lens That is a service that helps you create beautiful and engaging AR experiences for your fans on Facebook and Snapchat – better yet, you can create custom branded AR Camera Effects, which is why this is such an attractive service for businesses looking for new (literally new!) and engaging ways to promote themselves on the biggest social platforms in the world.
These branded Camera Effects can be used as part of a marketing campaign, and influencer marketing campaign, to boost brand awareness through user-generated content, to use as contest submissions, or simply as a means to engage your audience and grow your brand in the process.
But I think the best way to show you what exactly it is that Lens That does, is to give you some examples of the type of amazing content you can create with it:
Masks for dressing up
One of the common uses of AR Camera Effects is to add some sort of element to change your appearance – a mask, a cat on your head, the costume of a popular movie character, and so on.
For example, fans – and non-fans, it’s still fun! – can try on the plague doctor mask and pretend they’re in the 17th century while they’re waiting for new episodes from The Plague tv show:
Or they can pretend to be Lucifer…
Build a game:
Games are even better at getting people to engage with you and your brand. Because, well…they’re just so much fun!
For example, Lens That have create this new game for God of War which uses the rear-view camera on your phone – check it out below and if you want to try it out, go to this link to add it to your Facebook App Camera Effects:
These types of AR experiences can be highly engaging and therefore, successful. They’re fun, they make you want to keep trying them to beat your old score, and they’ll probably lead to some funny faces that need to be shared with your friends – thus helping you improve both brand awareness and engagement in one go.
For retail: try out products with AR
Another very cool way of using AR is as a retail business or online shop selling clothing and accessories – basically anything that people wear.
Your customers can then actually use their camera to see what they would look like wearing the product they’re checking out:
Or to put your products in the spotlight:
Your products can also be the central part of a fun AR experience; like this game that has you eating chips falling out of the sky:
Put your fans at the centre of the event:
As a fan of a sports team, one of the best parts of supporting them is the sense of community, of taking part in something bigger. The Lens That AR Camera Effects can actually help you re-create some of that feeling digitally.
This guy is watching a football match, wearing his team colours, a beer-drinking hat, and including the match’s score in real time at the top of the screen:
These types of AR experiences can be amazing for engagement and brand awareness for one simple reason: they’re highly shareable.
If you want to try these experiences or get any of the camera effects for yourself, you can easily add them to your Facebook app camera with just a couple of clicks – check out the links below to try out the awesome Camera Effects listed earlier 🙂
How to get the branded AR Camera Effects for yourself
If you want to create your own branded Camera Effects, the process is pretty simple; you contact Lens That with your idea, you build a brief together to make sure the team know exactly what you want, and then they’ll start working on designing and developing your idea.
If you want some inspiration with what to create and what kind of AR camera experiences you can create for your fans and followers, you can use Lenslist to browse through some of the best effects for Facebook and Snapchat from creators all over the world:
There are literally thousands of snap codes in their library and over 2.k videos to check out – plus, if you want to stay on top of the latest news and developments in the world of artificial intelligence, you can check out their AR news database, updated regularly with news and interesting AR-related content.
Custom branded AR experiences are now more accessible than ever to businesses of all different sizes. Camera effects like the ones that you can create with Lens That are impressive, highly engaging branding machines – a way to stand out from your competitors and provide them with a very fun way to interact directly with your brand, and an experience they are likely to share with their friends and followers thus further driving up brand awareness and engagement.
What is your experience with AR?
And most importantly…if you had the possibility, what kind of AR Camera Effects would you create?