tag:www.econsultancy.com,2008:/topics/augmented-reality Latest Augmented reality content from Econsultancy 2016-11-08T15:10:00+00:00 tag:www.econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68504 2016-11-08T15:10:00+00:00 2016-11-08T15:10:00+00:00 Facebook's 10-year plan: Connectivity, artificial intelligence & VR Nikki Gilliland <p>These were the opening words of Mike Schroepfer, CTO of Facebook, in his kick-off talk at Web Summit in Lisbon.</p> <p>I was sat in the audience, pastei de nata in hand, ready to hear what he had to say.</p> <p>Here is a summary of his talk.</p> <h3>1. Connectivity</h3> <p>Facebook’s mission has always been to make the world a more open and connected place.</p> <p>However, when it comes to the next decade, this involves solving three important issues - the first of which is greater connectivity.</p> <p>Of course, in today’s technology-driven world, it is easy to forget that the internet is still a far flung notion for around 4.1bn people across the globe.</p> <p>Today Mike explained how Facebook will strive to bring these people into the conversation by implementing technology solutions that will work in all kinds of environments.</p> <p>Project Aquila is one example already underway. Designed to provide internet access in suburban areas, it involves setting up a linked network of solar-powered drones.</p> <p>Likewise, LiDAR technology – which involves identifying and connecting utility poles, aims to create connectivity in urban environments without the need for underground cables.</p> <p>Facebook fully admits that these initiatives are not without risk. It has already seen the failure of its first attempt at delivering a satellite to orbit - <a href="http://www.theverge.com/2016/9/1/12754614/spacex-falcon-9-rocket-explosion-video-watch" target="_blank">SpaceX Falcon 9 famously exploded</a> during a test launch earlier this year.</p> <p>However, with increased focus on improving machine intelligence, the company is unwavering in its mission to better connect the world with as little disruption to the environment as possible.</p> <h3>2. AI</h3> <p>With 2bn photos shared and 100m hours of video watched every day – Facebook's next challenge is build truly intelligent computer systems to interpret the vast swathes of data.</p> <p>We can already see the rapid pace of progress. Earlier this year, it launched assistive technology for visually impaired people, creating captions based on image recognition.</p> <p>Similarly, it has also found that problems which previously seemed impossible - such as intelligence systems being able to solve simple word puzzles - can in fact be done. </p> <p>One of Facebook's biggest advancements in AI technology is undoubtedly Style Transfer – a new camera feature that allows users to add filters to live video footage.</p> <p><iframe src="https://www.facebook.com/plugins/video.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2Fzuck%2Fvideos%2F10103204449698911%2F&amp;show_text=0&amp;width=400" width="400" height="400"></iframe></p> <p>Mike demonstrated how, just like a standard image filter, the technology can be overlaid on mobile phones in real time.</p> <p>In future, this progress with AI looks set to continue, with the main goal being machine intelligence deciphering complex text such as Wikipedia articles.</p> <h3>3. VR</h3> <p>Lastly, another area that has fascinated us for a long time. So why is 2016 the year <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/a-marketers-guide-to-virtual-reality/">virtual reality</a> will truly take off?</p> <p>According to Mike, the increasingly fast pace at which technology has evolved means that the various components needed for VR have finally caught up. </p> <p>Now, a sense of immersion is truly possible.</p> <p>One of the greatest developments is how technology like Facebook’s VR headset, the Oculus Rift, gives users a sense of grounded presence - even when in a virtual world.</p> <p>For example, when users are asked to look down from the perspective of a skyscraper, most people will apparently stop and falter. This is despite the fact that, in reality, a few minutes beforehand they were looking down at their feet on the ground.</p> <p>Further to this sense of realism, Mike also cited Unicef as a powerful example of how VR can change people’s perspectives as well as behaviour.</p> <p>By using the technology to give an insight into what it is like inside a Syrian refugee camp, the truly immersive video resulted in double the rate of donations to the charity.</p> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/uslhlXyYJ-M?wmode=transparent" width="640" height="360"></iframe></p> <p>For Facebook, the aim is to make virtual reality more accessible as well as to roll it out on a grander scale - and its new standalone technology is the next step.</p> <p>Instead of being tied to a desktop or mobile, the new VR system is designed to need no external equipment. </p> <p>This means even deeper immersion, and in turn, the opportunity to use it in more creative ways.</p> <h3>In conclusion...</h3> <p>While greater connectivity, improved AI and virtual reality might sounds like three separate challenges, as Mike explained, each one has the same single goal – that of deep social connection over long distances.</p> <p>In other words, to be able to connect to the people you care about, even if they’re hundreds of miles away.</p> <p>So, while it is constantly adapting to new technology, it's clear that Facebook's core mission hasn't changed all that much.</p> tag:www.econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68084 2016-07-15T12:01:00+01:00 2016-07-15T12:01:00+01:00 The week's news in digital (in five minutes) Ben Davis <h3>Amazon testing programmatic creative with video ads</h3> <p>Amazon has been testing personalised video ads, created automatically using graphics templates to combine imagery and text.</p> <p>Graeme Smith, MD of Amazon's software development centre in Edinburgh<a href="http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-36773409"> told the BBC</a> "...potentially anywhere you can see a video is potentially somewhere you could consider running personalised video ads, right across the internet."</p> <p>Retargeting by retailers often involves <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67516-four-video-campaigns-that-used-dynamic-creative/">slideshow style dynamic content</a> - it will be interesting to see how sophisticated these Amazon video ads are in comparison.</p> <h3>Amazon Prime Day was big</h3> <p>Prime Day on 12th July, Amazon's second annual sales event designed as summer's answer to Black Friday, was the retailer's "biggest day ever", <a href="http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/20fb0de0-4906-11e6-8d68-72e9211e86ab.html#axzz4ESpNIBCk">reports the FT</a>.</p> <p>Global orders were up 60% on last year's Prime Day. No figures were given by Amazon, though Prime Day was declared its busiest day of the year.</p> <p>Sales included 90,000 TVs and more than 215,000 rice cookers. 2015's inaugural Prime Day, you might remember, was <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68058-has-amazon-prime-day-2016-made-up-for-2015-s-primedayfail/">a bit more of a mixed bag</a>.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6939/prime_day_deals_tech.PNG" alt="prime day" width="615"></p> <h3>ASOS introduces one-hour delivery slot</h3> <p>DPD has helped ASOS offer a one-hour delivery slot. Nifty.</p> <p>With so many ecommerce businesses looking at same day delivery in the wake of Prime, this increased flexibility on a named day is another way to nail convenience.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7145/DPD-Precise-Hour-Select.png" alt="one hour slot" width="200"> </p> <h3>Pokémon GO - where do we start?</h3> <p>This week has seen the augmented reality game take the press by storm.</p> <p>Daily checks are needed to understand number of downloads (7.5m in the US as of early this week) and the impact on Nintendo stock.</p> <p>On Thursday, the app was released in the UK (users no longer have to engineer a US workaround).</p> <p>Interesting developments include proposed advertising within the game, with brands able to sponsor PokeStops.</p> <p>There has been some criticism of the game, including the 'appearance' of Pokémon in inappropriate locations (e.g. Auschwitz), as well as its request to access all of a user's Google account data (since fixed).</p> <p><em>You might like:</em></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68059-should-pokemon-go-give-marketers-hope-for-augmented-reality/">Should Pokemon GO give marketers hope for augmented reality?</a></li> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68060-what-brands-can-learn-from-nintendo-s-digital-transformation-and-pokemon-go/">What brands can learn from Nintendo's digital transformation and Pokemon GO</a></li> </ul> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0007/6955/pokemon_go-blog-flyer.jpg" alt="pokemon go" width="470" height="264"></p> <h3>Chatbots fail 'new Turing test'</h3> <p>The Winograd Schema Challenge is a new and tougher Turing test, which chatbots must ace to show they are capable of common sense understanding.</p> <p>Here's an example question from the test:</p> <p><strong>The trophy would not fit in the brown suitcase because it was too big (small). What was too big (small)?</strong></p> <ul> <li><strong>Answer 0: the trophy</strong></li> <li><strong>Answer 1: the suitcase</strong></li> </ul> <p><a href="https://www.technologyreview.com/s/601897/tougher-turing-test-exposes-chatbots-stupidity/?set=601902&amp;utm_source=MIT+TR+Newsletters&amp;utm_campaign=d3b0ca882f-The_Download_July_14_2016&amp;utm_medium=email&amp;utm_term=0_997ed6f472-d3b0ca882f-153860737&amp;goal=0_997ed6f472-d3b0ca882f-153860737&amp;mc_cid=d3b0ca882f&amp;mc_eid=fea291110e">MIT Tech Review reports</a> that the programs entered into the challenge were only a little better than random at choosing the correct meaning of sentences.</p> <p>The best of the bunch scored 48%, with 45% possible at random. 90% accuracy is required to take home the $25k prize.</p> <p>It was notable that Google and Facebook didn't enter - perhaps there is still a little way to go?</p> <h3>Nissan launches semi-autonomous driving</h3> <p>Two weeks after a driver died in a crash <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68019-all-the-week-s-digital-news-in-five-minutes/">whilst his Tesla car was on autopilot</a>, Nissan has launched ProPILOT, a similar semi-autonomous function.</p> <p>Pushing a button on the steering wheel will keep a vehicle a fixed distance from the car in front, without any input from the driver.</p> <p>The driver is still required to have their hands on the wheel, and Nissan EVP Hideyuki Sakamoto <a href="http://www.reuters.com/article/us-nissan-selfdriving-idUSKCN0ZT0NC">told Reuters</a> "These functions are meant to support drivers, and are not meant as self-driving capabilities".</p> <p>ProPILOThits the market next month in the Nissan Serena minivan.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7142/148020_1_5.jpg" alt="PROPILOT" width="615"></p> <h3>Marie Claire to retail on the high street and online</h3> <p style="font-weight: normal;"><a href="https://www.derwentlondon.com/news/article/tottenham-court-walks-flagship-store-for-new-beauty-and-wellness-brand">Marie Claire will open a beauty store</a> in London at Tottenham Court Walk.</p> <p style="font-weight: normal;">The magazine has created a new brand, 'Fabled by Marie Claire', which will also sell online and deliver through Ocado.</p> <h3>Woz to headline Festival of Marketing</h3> <p style="font-weight: normal;">Apple co-founder and inventor of the PC <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68057-steve-wozniak-co-founder-of-apple-to-headline-festival-of-marketing-2016/">Steve Wozniak will headline day one</a> of the Festival of Marketing in October in London. <a href="http://www.festivalofmarketing.com/buy-a-ticket?_ga=1.123039373.762110302.1450191097">See the site for tickets</a>.</p> <p style="font-weight: normal;"><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6957/Woz-Head-Shot-3.jpg" alt="woz" width="400"></p> <h3>EU continues to pursue Google over competition law</h3> <p>The EU Commission has launched a third anti-trust proceeding against Google.</p> <p>Critique of Google Shopping and Android is now followed by criticism of Google's third party site search product (Adsense for search), which doesn't allow ads from Google competitors. </p> <h3>Phrasee one of the first to receive VC funding post-Brexit</h3> <p>Finally, a bit of a shout out to Econsultancy blog favourite Parry Malm (see his <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/authors/parry-malm/">virally good articles about email here</a>).</p> <p><a href="https://phrasee.co/">Phrasee</a>, Parry's startup <a href="https://phrasee.co/why-we-took-on-1m-in-phrasee-funding/">closed a £1m funding</a> round this week, one of the first to do so post-Brexit vote.</p> <p>As we wait to see the impact on Britain's tech and startup scene, this is some cause for optimism at least.</p> tag:www.econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68059 2016-07-13T10:45:00+01:00 2016-07-13T10:45:00+01:00 Should Pokémon GO give marketers hope for augmented reality? Ben Davis <h3>Familiarity with the tech can only help so much</h3> <p>There's no doubt that so many smartphone users augmenting their reality with Pokémon makes it easier for brands to follow on with AR campaigns.</p> <p>AR is already becoming part of social media's visual vernacular and users are accustomed to pictures of reality that have been augmented (either with Pokémon or with Snapchat filters).</p> <p>However, familiarity can just as easily breed contempt, as was the case <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/62397-qr-codes-the-good-the-bad-and-the-ugly/">with QR codes</a> (<a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67545-10-practical-uses-for-qr-codes-in-china/">except in China</a>). Is it possible AR could fall into the same trap?</p> <p>Well, it is beset by some of the same problems, namely the need to be integrated into an app, rather than bundled with an operating system.</p> <p>For brands to succeed at scale, either an AR app such as Zappar or Blippar needs to gain popularity (Blippar has recently pivoted to visual search), a social app with a big user base needs to introduce the functionality, or new VR apps and devices need to become widespread enough to be the de facto home of AR.</p> <p>Otherwise, and for the time being, brands have to roll AR functionality into their own brand apps, creating a big hurdle for consumers who are reluctant to download an app to engage with mediocre content and sloppy UX.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr"><a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Pokemon?src=hash">#Pokemon</a> have been spotted among the plants and flowers in the USBG's National Garden. <a href="https://t.co/I3TEVH22xD">pic.twitter.com/I3TEVH22xD</a></p> — U.S. Capitol (@uscapitol) <a href="https://twitter.com/uscapitol/status/752890597866868736">July 12, 2016</a> </blockquote> <h3>The quality of the creative is obviously vital</h3> <p>This is the most important point and one which the reader may rightly assume is a bloody obvious one.</p> <p>The characters, the interactions, the storytelling, the competition - it all has to be compelling enough that users will engage <em>despite</em> the crappy UX.</p> <p>As my colleague <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68060-what-brands-can-learn-from-nintendo-s-digital-transformation-and-pokemon-go/">Bola points out</a>, brands need to create enormously fun characters or stories or, perhaps more easily, use particularly compelling incentives (big, money-can't-buy prizes).</p> <p>If brands think we want to download an app to scan uninspiring objects in order to download a snippet of a song, or see a hologram of a footballer, they are wrong.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr">Yeah we know Charizard is rare but don't let Officer Monello &amp; his new partner catch you! Don't <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/CatchEmAll?src=hash">#CatchEmAll</a> &amp; drive! <a href="https://t.co/S0ipjYTDeY">pic.twitter.com/S0ipjYTDeY</a></p> — NYPD 19th Precinct (@NYPD19Pct) <a href="https://twitter.com/NYPD19Pct/status/752530728588603392">July 11, 2016</a> </blockquote> <h3>Perhaps AR triggers are a red herring</h3> <p>It's the feeling of discovery that has made Pokémon GO so compelling. This is what great gaming is all about - adventure and mastery.</p> <p>Pokémon GO has engendered this in the real world by making players walk around in order to incubate their eggs and explore their environment to find Pokémon.</p> <p>Adding this GPS element is inspired, though the phrase 'augmented reality' has hinted at it all along.</p> <p>Where brands may have concentrated on augmenting an out-of-home advert, a catalogue or an object, they now understand that nothing less than augmenting a neighbourhood will suffice.</p> <p>We don't want to point, hover and wait. We want to explore and find something unique.</p> <p>In fact, the <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/65209-why-the-phrase-augmented-reality-should-be-retired/">very idea of a trigger</a> (a token or an object, such as that used by Zappar) may well be a red herring.</p> <p>Perhaps it interrupts the fantasy - only without triggers can there be a truly 'other' and limitless world of AR.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr">Blimey - Pokemon even invading my office. Will be trying to explain this to <a href="https://twitter.com/sophieraworth">@sophieraworth</a> on <a href="https://twitter.com/BBCNews">@BBCNews</a> at 1pm <a href="https://t.co/NqzPWJOuqW">pic.twitter.com/NqzPWJOuqW</a></p> — Rory Cellan-Jones (@ruskin147) <a href="https://twitter.com/ruskin147/status/752833907280711680">July 12, 2016</a> </blockquote> <h3>Truly gamified interaction doesn't come cheap</h3> <p>Even if GPS can be used intelligently in a branded AR campaign or competition, there are other elements of Pokémon GO that are obviously too difficult to replicate - it's a very sophisticated game for all its flaws.</p> <p>It's simply too costly for a brand to do something on this scale. So, without this level of gamification, can an AR treasure hunt be as hugely successful?</p> <p>Probably not, but hypothetically, for fans taking part in a brand competition, an AR hunt could no doubt be used to generate much chatter and engagement.</p> <p>Rewards could be built in and activity measured, though it would be a costly and therefore risky undertaking.</p> <p>Some brands have already attempted more limited versions of this - notably <a href="http://www.mobilecommercedaily.com/rei-rewards-consumers-with-augmented-reality-scavenger-hunt">REI combined AR</a> with 400 of its outdoor adverts in 2011, and some brands have worked with <a href="https://www.geocaching.com/brandedpromotions/">geocaching</a> to gamify engagement.</p> <p>Becks conducted the most high profile AR brand campaign to date, the <a href="http://www.motherlondon.com/creative/post/59">Green Box Project</a>, but this included triggers and was less about treasure hunting, more combining experiential with mobile.</p> <h3>Social media is still the priority</h3> <p>It's the social aspect of Pokémon GO that has captured the imagination of the press. People are out and about, meeting other players at landmarks and having real life conversations.</p> <p>This is the take-home message for brands. How can they work this kind of social interaction into their campaigns, online and off?</p> <p>Before social networks ramped up their ad solutions, brands tried to game social media and were often successful (<a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/63221-six-awesome-examples-of-facebook-campaigns-by-ikea/">e.g. IKEA</a>).</p> <p>Have brands become lazy, dependent on paid social to spread the word, rather than trying to engender genuine interaction? Looking at a lot of paid creative, I would argue yes.</p> <h3>Safety is not a minor concern </h3> <p>Using the big wide world as a sandbox is tricky, as Pokémon GO has found out with players being lured by muggers or simply caught out late at night in a dodgy location.</p> <p>Others have had to get used to streams of players visiting their street when a Pokémon Gym appears in the vicinity. </p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr">Living in an old church means many things. Today it means my house is a Pokémon Go gym. This should be fascinating.</p> — Boon Sheridan (@boonerang) <a href="https://twitter.com/boonerang/status/751849519407595520">July 9, 2016</a> </blockquote> <p>If a brand was to kick off a broad AR campaign, it would have to be wary of how such treasure hunting could put the public in danger.</p> <h3>In conclusion...</h3> <p>AR has been used for some practical purposes (e.g. <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67729-10-creative-digital-marketing-campaigns-from-lowe-s/">the Lowe's Holoroom</a> for customising kitchens), for fun in-store games (e.g. <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/63623-a-halloween-of-spookily-augmented-reality-at-asda/">ASDA</a>), and in trigger-based brand campaigns (Zappar, Becks, REI).</p> <p>Though brands such as Becks can be credited for trying AR campaigns on a larger scale, surely the stage is set for another brand to try a triggerless, AR hunt, more in the vein of Pokémon GO.</p> <p>If a brand did this right, surely the engagement could be impressive.</p> tag:www.econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68020 2016-07-06T15:01:15+01:00 2016-07-06T15:01:15+01:00 Mobile: A mindset, not just a handset Gina Roughan <p>This is not news: This is 2016, and brand marketers have read the UK mobile stats.</p> <p>But whether or not brands are embracing the full opportunity offered by mobile technology is another matter.</p> <p>Optimising your brand’s desktop presence for mobile is just the tip of the stylus.</p> <p>The use of ever-increasing mobile functionality in the creation of meaningful experiences for consumers as they go about their daily lives needs to be the ambition.</p> <h3>Inherent mobility</h3> <p>As a content director, I’m obsessed with the creation and delivery of brilliant branded content to target audiences – but even I can appreciate that context is key, and content for content’s sake is a waste of time.</p> <p>Sure, geo-targeted, weather-specific ice cream content based on my location in sunny Cornwall is more likely to send me to the Tesco freezer section than if I received a generic brand message in rainy Romford or windy Wiltshire. </p> <p>But with the technology now available to us, we should be aiming higher.</p> <p>Instead of sending a picture of a generic ice cream, why not send me content relating to something that your system tells me is definitely in stock, guide me there using Google Maps, then use an <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/65221-ibeacon-trials-13-brands-trying-to-find-a-use-case/">iBeacon</a> to confirm and reward my presence by delivering augmented reality content (like <a href="https://vimeo.com/120791649">this Coke effort</a>) or sending a discount barcode via Snapchat? </p> <p>It’s down to brands – not the hardware manufacturers – to leverage this technology and capitalise on it.</p> <p>The so-called disrupters, such as Uber, have done exactly that: Building their entire business around that embrace of mobility – the embrace of the fact that everyone has a connected computer with them pretty much 24/7 and sees it as a way of making their lives better. </p> <p>My point is that it shouldn’t just be about services; content creators should be thinking more about where they can use the inherent power of mobile devices to push the envelope when it comes to utility.</p> <p>There have been some brilliant examples in recent years of work on mobile that haven’t just been about producing innovative creative to surprise and delight, but to serve a purpose. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0007/6644/dulux_app-blog-flyer.jpg" alt="" width="470" height="265"></p> <h3>Painting by photos...</h3> <p>One of the most recent brand offerings to successfully embrace mobile utility is the colour matching app from Dulux.</p> <p>A practical and functional tie that plays on the brand’s perceived market expertise, the app allows users to take a photograph of colour with their phone’s camera, and have that colour matched to the appropriate paint.</p> <p>An alternative function allows you to ‘visualise’ different colours in different settings, i.e. interior vs. exterior.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0007/6647/woolworths-1-blog-flyer.jpg" alt="" width="470" height="311"> </p> <h3>Shopping smarter...</h3> <p>The Australian supermarket chain Woolworths is pioneering the use of iBeacon technology to enhance its customers’ <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/66389-what-does-the-ideal-click-and-collect-service-look-like/">click and collect</a> experience.</p> <p>Instead of having to arrive at the store at an appointed time, or having to wait for their order to be pulled together, customers are asked to download an app.</p> <p>When they are within a set radius of the store a notification is sent to the picking systems, prompting staff to complete the order and have it ready to hand over to the customer when they arrive. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0007/6649/eyecancer-blog-flyer.jpg" alt="" width="470" height="326"></p> <h3>Literally saving lives...</h3> <p>It might not be based on innovative technology, but the Childhood Eye Cancer Trust’s Next Photo campaign was another excellent example of how to utilise the fact everyone now has a camera in their pocket.</p> <p>One of the quickest ways to detect retinoblastoma (eye cancer) in young children is to look at a flash photograph – a developing tumour will often reflect back as white.</p> <p>A series of four posters of children – with the retinas treated to reflect back white – were used to challenge passers-by to take out their phone and take a flash photo, thus spreading awareness of the condition and this easy method of early detection.</p> <p>That’s the kind of utility I’m talking about in terms of mobility.</p> <p>It’s about marketers finding ways of using the inherent capabilities of smart devices beyond delivering branded information. That, you can do with print, simple (non-innovative) display advertising or a website.</p> <p>But actually offering something that your customers find genuinely useful? That’s where mobile, and mobility, lead the way.</p> tag:www.econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/67809 2016-05-04T14:27:00+01:00 2016-05-04T14:27:00+01:00 Five digital trends for retail in the next five years Nikki Gilliland <p>Try sticking that in your supermarket trolley.</p> <p>Ovum and Criteo’s <a href="http://www.criteo.com/resources/ovum-future-ecommerce/" target="_blank">Future of Ecommerce</a> report recently predicted the biggest trends to impact retail in the next five to ten years.</p> <p>Brace yourselves as we take a look at some of the biggest:</p> <h3><strong>1. Shopping as an immersive experience</strong></h3> <p>From virtual changing rooms to in-store selfie competitions, brands are becoming more intent on creating a shopping ‘experience’ to remember.</p> <p>With the rise of virtual and augmented reality, this looks set to explode on a whole other level. </p> <p>In future, technology will allow us to build on the likes of <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/63574-augmented-reality-the-ikea-catalogue-and-beyond/" target="_blank">Ikea’s AR app</a> and <a href="http://www.digitaltrends.com/mobile/dior-eyes-vr-fashion-show-headset-news/" target="_blank">Dior Eyes VR</a>, creating experiences both at home and in-store that blur the lines between the digital and physical world.</p> <p>Of course it is important for brands to ensure an intrinsic benefit for the consumer, otherwise there is the risk of this technology being used as merely a sales gimmick.</p> <p>Advantages also lie in resolving practical issues, such as reducing the likelihood of returns by allowing us to ‘try before we buy’.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/4607/dior_eyes.jpg" alt="" width="770" height="403"></p> <h3><strong>2. Brands know where you live</strong></h3> <p>Thanks to the likes of Uber and Deliveroo, we’re used to giving away our location on a regular basis.</p> <p>In future, the world of ecommerce looks set to utilise this behaviour to build on the ultimate curated shopping experience.</p> <p>As well as using algorithms to monitor what we’re browsing, brands will be able to find out where we are doing it, meaning timely and <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67418-what-is-location-based-advertising-why-is-it-the-next-big-thing" target="_blank">ultra-targeted marketing</a> being sent direct to our mobiles.</p> <p>So, if you regret not buying that shirt you saw on sale, don’t worry, Bluetooth Low Energy technology (BLE) means that the brand will know exactly how long you spent debating it.</p> <p>In turn, this means you will probably receive a reminder or even an offer tempting you to make the purchase long after you’ve left the shop.</p> <h3><strong>3. Pop-ups are here to stay</strong></h3> <p>Pop-up shops have been popular for a while, however until now they have been seen as the hallmark of the new or independent boutique brand.</p> <p>In future, both online retailers and established brands will utilise physical space to maximise resources and build awareness around a particular product or release.</p> <p>A great example of this is Lidl’s ‘Duluxe’ restaurant – a pop up designed <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/65423-four-reasons-to-admire-the-lidlsurprises-campaign/">to promote the supermarket’s Christmas range</a>.</p> <p>During its short run, diners were invited to sample the food without prior knowledge of where it was sourced from.</p> <p>With both surprise and interactive elements, the pop up succeeded in attracting new audiences as well as creating hype.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/4600/pop_up_shops.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="560"></p> <h3><strong>4. Mobile-first for advertising</strong></h3> <p>Further to brands marketing directly to mobiles, it is predicted that by 2019 global mobile advertising revenues will increase from $22.64bn dollars to an impressive $63.94bn.</p> <p>Why the big leap? Up until now, most of this revenue has stemmed from basic mobile web advertising, however in future it will continue to be integrated into messaging platforms.</p> <p>With this type of in-app advertising, <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67767-will-conversational-marketing-become-a-reality-in-2016/">direct conversations between the brand and the consumer</a> will become the norm.</p> <p>And the good news is that it won’t only benefit the retailer – it could also help improve service, delivery and general levels of customer satisfaction.</p> <p>On another note, the use of mobile for payments is also predicted to sky rocket, increasing from an estimated $452.78m to $2.07bn global users by 2019.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/4610/Mobile_Advertising.PNG" alt="" width="784" height="405"></p> <h3><strong>5. The rise of digital assistants</strong></h3> <p>If your feelings towards Siri or Cortana are neither here nor there, you might grow to appreciate the digital assistants of the future.</p> <p>In an ever-expanding world of online retail, it can often be hard to find exactly what we’re looking for. Do we even know ourselves? </p> <p>By filtering out wrong sizes or products we’re unlikely to purchase, digital assistants will be able to help us hone our shopping activity in a more streamlined and ultimately successful fashion.</p> <p>Of course, with concerns over privacy, initiatives like <a href="http://www.gsma.com/personaldata/mobile-connect" target="_blank">GSMA’s Mobile Connect</a> – a tool that allows users to control how much data they share – are likely to also gain in popularity.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/4606/digital_assistants.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="532"></p> <p>For more information on the future of ecommerce, check out our report on <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/digital-transformation-in-the-retail-sector" target="_blank">Digital Transformation in the Retail Sector</a>.</p> tag:www.econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/67713 2016-04-14T10:03:24+01:00 2016-04-14T10:03:24+01:00 Augmented Reality vs. Virtual Reality: where should brands focus? Patricio Robles <h3>What are they?</h3> <p>First things first. What are augmented reality and virtual reality, and how do they differ from each other?</p> <p><strong>Augmented reality </strong>refers to technologies that augment views of the real world with computer-generated information.</p> <p>An example of an AR device is Google Glass, smartglasses that combined a touchpad, camera and LED display. Thanks to the display, users of Google Glass can access the internet and services such as mapping and email within their field of view.</p> <p>Next-generation AR devices like the recently-unveiled <a href="https://www.microsoft.com/microsoft-hololens/en-us">Microsoft HoloLens</a> promise AR experiences that some have called magical.</p> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/_3Y7BXEbqcg?wmode=transparent" width="560" height="315"></iframe></p> <p>Because AR can be based on digital views of the real world, more ubiquitous devices, such as smartphones and tablets, can also be used to create AR experiences.</p> <p>As the name suggests,<strong> virtual reality</strong> refers to technologies that allow users to interact with virtual experiences. Unlike AR, there's no view, direct or indirect, of the real world; everything the user sees, hears and feels is computer-generated.</p> <p>Facebook's Oculus Rift is an example of a VR device.</p> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/6qzLdYmmuto?wmode=transparent" width="560" height="315"></iframe></p> <h3>How they're being used by brands today</h3> <p>Because smartphones and tablet devices can be used to develop AR experiences, <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/9842-seven-awesome-augmented-reality-campaigns">examples of brands using augmented reality</a> in the wild are plentiful. </p> <p>In 2013, <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/63623-a-halloween-of-spookily-augmented-reality-at-asda">Asda turned to augmented reality</a> to implement a <em>Horrible Halloween Hunt</em> in which kids using the Asda app could be guided by Sir Spook on an in-store adventure.</p> <p>Also in 2013, IKEA <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/63574-augmented-reality-the-ikea-catalogue-and-beyond">launched an AR app</a> for iOS and Android that enabled shoppers to simulate how IKEA furniture would look in their homes.</p> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/vDNzTasuYEw?wmode=transparent" width="560" height="315"></iframe></p> <p>Because brands have been using AR for years, <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/63929-the-british-museum-five-lessons-in-augmented-reality">tips and best practices</a> have emerged, making it easier for brands to design and implement compelling AR experiences.</p> <p>VR, on the other hand, is a more nascent technology, so there are fewer real-world applications, but the numbers are growing. Tommy Hilfiger and Thomas Cook are <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67078-three-examples-of-brands-experimenting-with-virtual-reality">among the brands that have experimented with VR headsets</a> like the Oculus Rift and Samsung Gear RV.</p> <p>Boursin combined VR, bespoke CGI animation and live product sampling <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67391-the-boursin-sensorium-using-virtual-reality-to-sell-soft-cheese">to create an experiential roadshow</a>.</p> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/XRik3h5M-qU?wmode=transparent" width="560" height="315"></iframe> </p> <h3>The potential</h3> <p>Thanks to increasingly capable and affordable smartphone and tablet devices, as well as mature platforms like iOS and Android, there is ample opportunity for brands of all shapes and sizes in a wide range of industries to develop refined and sophisticated AR experiences today.</p> <p>VR is less accessible and probably will be for the foreseeable future, but there are <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/66587-10-ways-marketers-can-use-virtual-reality-right-now">numerous ways virtual reality can be applied</a> and for brands in some industries, some of the applications could be game changers.</p> <p>For example, brands in travel and hospitality, including hotel giant Marriott, travel agency Thomas Cook and airline Qantas Airways, <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/66614-will-virtual-reality-revolutionise-the-travel-industry">have started experimenting with initiatives around next-gen VR headsets</a> and in some cases, VR has the potential to revolutionise the way they sell their services.</p> <h3>Which technology wins? The verdict</h3> <p>So should brands focus on AR or VR? Not surprisingly, that depends.</p> <p>Right now, AR is certainly more accessible. Opportunities to create AR experiences are abundant, and those experiences can be created for widely-available smartphone and tablet devices and easily distributed through popular app stores.</p> <p>VR is generating lots of buzz, but brands will have a harder time employing it today. While devices like the Oculus Rift and Samsung Gear VR are now available to consumers, they're far from mainstream.</p> <p>That likely won't change until prices for VR headsets drop and larger numbers of consumers are convinced to buy for non-gaming applications. Additionally, given the cost of creating VR experiences – professional-grade VR cameras alone <a href="http://www.wired.co.uk/news/archive/2016-03/18/nokia-ozo-360-vr-camera-release-date-price">can cost tens of thousands of dollars</a> – brands without game-changing VR opportunities will probably want to wait until VR is more accessible.</p> <p><em>If you want to learn more about VR for marketing, check out <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/a-marketers-guide-to-virtual-reality">Econsultancy’s Marketer’s Guide to Virtual Reality</a>. </em></p> tag:www.econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/65209 2014-07-22T12:09:43+01:00 2014-07-22T12:09:43+01:00 Why the phrase 'augmented reality' should be retired Ben Davis <h2>Why AR tech can unlock the physical</h2> <h3>The experience is slick</h3> <p>QR never was. Blippar and others are. Look at the CTA on the side of this Pepsi product. It is simple but effective. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0005/0645/blip_pepsi.jpg" alt="pepsi blippar" width="400" height="278"> </p> <p>QR was often fouled up by the marketing department because of the slightly disjointed tech stack involved. The QR scanning apps aren’t standardised. No one app prevails. Most free apps launch advertising and aren’t invested in the serving of good or standardised content.</p> <p>Add to that the generic ‘scan and share’ CTA that didn’t inform users how to download a QR scanner (not bundled with iOS). </p> <p>Add to this, the fact that marketers create their own landing pages on their own websites for a lot of QR code destinations and it’s no surprise the experience is bad.</p> <p>Of course, with AR, consumers still have to go through the app download process, but at least there's instruction to do so here.</p> <h3>Global smartphone penetration is going great guns</h3> <p>What with manufacturers trying to focus on developing markets and some developing markets like China having a populace that <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/65088-china-from-wechat-mcommerce-to-experiential-nuts#i.1ok6ancdpffopu">ascribe considerable value to a good phone</a>, smartphone penetration is high. </p> <p>This simply means more and more can scan and won’t be daunted by the tech. </p> <h3>A branded app works</h3> <p>It’s natural that the tech should be standardised to increase adoption. Blippar signing such big partners with such wide distribution as Coca Cola and Pepsi is a coup because it may help the platform cement a place as the best known AR app.</p> <p>This prominence is arguably needed for the user to be comfortable with repeat scanning.</p> <h3>A familiar concept for FMCG</h3> <p>The price point of FMCG is low enough to make unlockable content actually a value-add. In other sectors where AR might be used for branding, such as automotive for example, the tech can feel a little gimmicky. </p> <p>But FMCG is absolutely the right sector for this technology.</p> <h3>The uses are myriad</h3> <p>One example Ambarish gave me: imagine adding educational or instructional content to sanitary towel packaging. It could launch video or audio content for many products with common FAQs.</p> <h2>Why ‘augmented reality’ should be retired</h2> <h3>An experience is often not really a reward</h3> <p>What would you prefer, a can of Coca Cola that uncovers a new track from your favourite artists on Spotify or a can that, when your camera points at it, produces an animation on your phone that appears to overlay reality?</p> <p>FMCG has history with the free gift, whether in packets of cereal, the Happy Meal, packets of crisps. Giving away something tangible ‘for free’ is effective.</p> <p>Consumers simply instantly understand and value the premise. In this instance, streamed media created by known artists can be thought of as tangible.</p> <p>The ‘see a cool animation’ call-to-action is still compelling, but perhaps not to all audiences unless a star is used creatively. Yes, augmented animations that convey information might be better, but the user might prefer this simply to be served to the phone and not dependent on pointing at a trigger the whole time.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0005/0647/ar_anim.jpg" alt="augmented reality" width="325" height="244"> </p> <p>There are still conceptual wrinkles to iron out here. ‘Ownership’ of a reward isn’t really possible unless the activator is concealed from the mere browser i.e. secret Spotify playlists are a good reward as Coca Cola doesn’t lose anything if they are accessed by none-buyers. </p> <p>However, media with a social element is highly valued by consumers and something that they are accustomed to no longer owning, rather sharing. That's why Coca-Cola's Spotify playlists are locally curated by users, lending more authenticity and hopefully hitting the mark.</p> <h3>The experiences aren’t that great</h3> <p>I can go and watch the new Planet of the Apes in 3D or play Grand Theft Auto on the PS3. These experiences far-and-away trump the animations AR is capable of. In the world of Oculus VR, a pic on a phone is relatively underwhelming. </p> <h3>Glass and others probably won’t work</h3> <p>I know this is a tad presumptuous, but the latest <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/tags/google-glass">Glass prototype</a> gets very hot, is very slow when running apps like Blippar that require quite a bit of processing power and doesn’t quite feel right when used with gestures (Blippar has some nascent gaming content that uses gesture but again isn’t reliably responsive).</p> <p>Anything using gestural interfaces is going to find it difficult as users discover how easy false positives are to input, along with the inaccuracy of the input (as opposed to a mouse or even voice). </p> <p><em>For more information on mobile, check out our <a href="https://econsultancy.com/topics/mobile">mobile topic page</a>.</em></p> tag:www.econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/65132 2014-07-07T16:29:00+01:00 2014-07-07T16:29:00+01:00 Five key trends and takeouts from Google I/O 2014 David Skerrett <h2>1. Android Wear: glance-able context is the new king</h2> <p><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/64094-ces-2014-product-launch-roundup-yahoo-wearables-dual-os#i.uxbbzl7fpfssuh">Wearable tech</a> is the latest buzzword and top trend and Google didn’t disappoint. It showed off watches from LG, Samsung and Moto, all of which are running its software. </p> <p>The watches are simple to use. David Singleton, Google's engineering director, ordered and paid for a pizza using an app in under 20 seconds. Users can use more voice activation features and use controls on the watch to activate apps on their Android phone. </p> <p>They also feature health benefits like measuring heart rate and include a pedometer. Google's partnerships with brands like Nike, Adidas and RunKeeper could be seen as the company taking the initiative in this sector and will ultimately lead to more widespread adoption. </p> <p>Analysts predict that 19m smart watches will be sold by the end of the year. Google is well ahead in the race, as we wait for the iWatch to be announced. </p> <p><img src="http://assets.econsultancy.com/public/imgur/HZLVx3X.png" alt="google watch" width="499" height="332"></p> <h2>2. Android Auto: racing ahead</h2> <p>Again, Google has partnered with top brands to get its software on the market. Audi, Hyundai, GM, Honda and Volvo are all signed up to bring a Google experience to their cars’ dashboards.</p> <p>Android Auto will work with each individual car for seamless use. From Google Maps to Google Play Music and Spotify, Android Auto will port most of the Android phone apps to your car for use while driving. </p> <p>Voice control will manage texting, calling and checking emails. Android Auto has launched with 40 well-known manufacturing partners, vastly outnumbering Apple CarPlay.</p> <p><img src="http://assets.econsultancy.com/public/imgur/NJd5TxW.jpg" alt="android auto" width="497" height="330"></p> <h3>3. Android TV switches On</h3> <p>Google is moving into your living room. Following on from the failed Google TV, Android TV has upped its game.</p> <p>The TV comes with new voice search capabilities, enabling you to search for games, films and TV programmes. Google Cast will enable Android TV powered boxes to seamlessly take viewing sessions enabled on a mobile device and stream directly through the TV, as well as to screen mirroring of Chrome browsers tabs from another device. </p> <p>We’re finally seeing Google begin to catch up with Apple TV.</p> <p><img src="http://assets.econsultancy.com/public/imgur/t3zxgNv.jpg" alt="android tv" width="492" height="375"></p> <h2>4. Android One: an affordable Smartphone to rule them all</h2> <p>This development really stands out to us. Google unveiled Android One, a low cost phone that positions the company at the cusp of taking over the entire world!</p> <p>The phone will be designed to have a basic set of features and be priced less than £100, targeting emerging markets, where mobile phone use is prevalent, but smartphones unaffordable.</p> <p> Starting the journey in India, where less than 10% of the Indian population have access to smartphones, Google will be able to give the next 1bn people access via Android One.</p> <p><img src="http://assets.econsultancy.com/public/imgur/Vaa82lz.jpg" alt="" width="449" height="291"> </p> <h3>5. Android L: the new mobile OS to kick KitKat to the curb</h3> <p>Last but by no means least, Google showcased the next version of Android. Google will add more than 5,000 new APIs to Android L, as well as new animation capabilities, 3D review with real-time shadows, notifications on the lock screen and much better graphics. </p> <p>All very impressive. What stood out to us was that their devices will actually be 'contextually aware', knowing when users are at home and want entertainment, or when they are at work, or travelling.</p> <p>Your phone and tablet will automatically unlock whenever you're near it while wearing a Bluetooth-connected device. If it can't detect you anymore, the screen will auto-lock as a safety precaution.</p> <p><img src="http://assets.econsultancy.com/public/imgur/QrHRLuE.jpg" alt="android L" width="450" height="400"></p> <h3>So what does this mean for brands?</h3> <p>I think it’s all about having the opportunity to get even closer to consumers and making the strategy and communications all about <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/the-realities-of-online-personalisation-report">personalisation</a>.</p> <p>With Android Auto, brands will have the opportunity to create personal experiences for their customers inside the car. Spotify has already created an app for this. With the advances in Android Wear, brands will be able to target consumers at an even more personal level than the smartphone.</p> <p>Forward thinking brands will no doubt start looking into bringing deals and payments straight to the smartwatch. Through app notifications, brands will be able to understand their users much better and continue to create even more personalised experiences, which will ultimately drive brand loyalty.</p> tag:www.econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/65021 2014-06-18T11:17:00+01:00 2014-06-18T11:17:00+01:00 The A to Z of mobile marketing: 26 trends to inspire you David Skerrett <h2>A: Adaptive Web Design &amp; RESS</h2> <p>Responsive web design (RWD) is popular right now and to some it’s become a silver bullet solution. However,  <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/64833-adaptive-web-design-pros-and-cons">adaptive web design (AWD)</a> is the gold standard, if you can afford it. </p> <p>With AWD, layout is determined server side to enable the delivery of the most appropriate version of the site based on the functionality of the device. This means that load times are quick, optimisation is easier, and the site is more appropriate to the device, along with being able to reach non-smartphone users.</p> <p>For brands where context is king, such as in retail and travel, being more device-specific rather than screen-specific is likely to produce bigger returns. Responsive Web Design with Server Side Components (RESS) is a cross between RWD and AWD - a hybrid solution that ensures your solution is more ‘next generation’ by ensuring pages load faster and work on more devices.</p> <p>RESS provides relevant content and call-to-actions specific to the device. In doing so the user benefits from a richer and more engaging experience.</p> <p>I expect to see more brands choosing adaptive and RESS over responsive this year, especially when so many brands are experiencing RWD projects that come in late and over budget. </p> <p><img src="https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/kNXVZFkPVmE836iB88KRxsWlXKElhoOqo_rRFWlKwGlmcDtDsTNn4ogkc5mnhQsMWxVRlu75yQqtuPIakQ591k5TxvgN6shOtorUERVCmXNE8ofj9BCKmPUg3zqLLvo7M7w" alt="Lufthansa adaptive web" width="558" height="455"></p> <p>Lufthansa's use of adaptive design shows how experiences can be tailored according to likely user behaviour.  </p> <h2>B: Beta &amp; minimum viable products</h2> <p>Once highly popular, I predict a resurgence in launching in Beta as a way to get minimum viable products on mobile out to market quickly. It helps avoid making big decisions based on what people say versus what people do.</p> <p>Early users help to inform the features, expansion and improvements on the mobile roadmap, with success (or failure) early on helping to dictate future investment. Circa 90-day turnaround minimum viable products will become more popular in getting something feasible out to market.</p> <p>Doing this allows businesses to gain useful feedback early on, enabling you to alter the product to suit customer needs. This method allows you, in some cases, to fail quickly and early, which saves you time and money.</p> <p>Innovation needs to get out of PowerPoint quicker and by making rather than talking, you can build the future, rather than asking your customers to predict it as per the famous Henry Ford quote. </p> <h2>C: Consumer first, mobile first is dead</h2> <p>A Google Executive recently declared ‘mobile first’ dead.</p> <p>Driven by the rise of the smartphone, the principles of ‘mobile first’ are important, but the notion that the consumer is always a mobile consumer, and not a cross channel / device consumer can be dangerous.</p> <p>Today’s consumers switch between devices to achieve tasks and expect brands to keep up. Therefore focusing solely on mobile devices can be a myopic approach.</p> <p>Instead marketers need to adjust their messages to suit consumer’s multi-device behaviour. </p> <h2>D: Drivables</h2> <p>CarPlay, by Apple, enables drivers to use their iPhone apps through their car through a USB connection.</p> <p>Drivers can control CarPlay using voice through Siri; they can request songs, call someone, dictate text messages and ask for directions all through voice control.</p> <p>The benefit of voice control means that drivers are not nearly as distracted as they would be if taking their eyes off the road to fiddle with their iPhone, therefore CarPlay promotes safer driving.</p> <p>Drivers can also control CarPlay using a touchscreen display or using the car’s in-built controls.</p> <p><img src="http://assets.econsultancy.com/public/imgur/VfXIekN.jpg" alt="carplay" width="443" height="249"></p> <p>Other companies are working on their versions of car systems; these include Microsoft Sync, and Google’s Android-based system, The Open Automotive Alliance.</p> <p>The ‘Drivables’ trend of in-car technology and evolving interface design will be important this year. As penetration increases input techniques such as voice control will become normalised which will have implications on interaction design across all connected devices. </p> <h2>E: Empathy</h2> <p>In mobile it’s easy to get distracted by chasing the new trend.</p> <p>Sometimes we do things because we can, rather than because we should! Empathy for the consumer is key, as is adding value with your mobile proposition: How will your audience during the course of their busy life gain value from the interaction with your brand on their most personal device?</p> <p>Often being useful is a great way to stand out. Get in touch with your inner consumer, or speak to real ones, to avoid being annoying in creating a mobile white elephant.</p> <p>A great way to do just this and get in touch with your consumer, is through user testing. Ask your consumers those all important questions, understand their attitude towards your brand and why they may choose a competitor over you, and most importantly ask what they want and need from you.  </p> <h2>F: Facebook</h2> <p>There is plenty we can learn from Facebook’s mobile journey. Facebook have cracked how to make money from mobile.</p> <p>In Q4 of 2013 Facebook sales reached more than $1bn from mobile advertising alone. The number of mobile Facebook users has also rocketed; at the start of 2013 there were more daily desktop users than mobile, but within just one year there were around 200m more mobile users than desktop.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0004/9228/facebook_mobile_-blog-full.png" alt="" width="615" height="359"></p> <p>As there are 556m people accessing Facebook on their smartphone or tablet every day, it is imperative that the mobile user experience is optimised.</p> <p>Before Facebook’s huge mobile success, version four of the native app was rated just one-star in the app store by more than half of its users. Facebook listened to the users and redeveloped the native app in 2012, focussing on improving the speed of use and functionality through changing the programming language.</p> <p>Version four was written in HTML5 so that one app could be used across all platforms, but this resulted in a lower quality performance. Version five is written in the native language for iOS, Objective-C, which has drastically improved the user experience, as it’s significantly quicker.</p> <p>Facebook can be used for mobile marketing in a number of ways: to build awareness, views and clicks in news feed; or by using Facebook as a sign-in to your mobile experience to make it more personal and capture data. </p> <h2>G: Great expectations (not good)</h2> <p>Our increased emotional dependency on our mobile devices is raising the bar for brands.</p> <p>Good isn’t good enough anymore! Simply repackaging web content, ignoring the context of mobility and the opportunities of location relevance, as well as other mobile sensors, isn’t good enough anymore.</p> <p>Consumers have great expectations, not good expectations. Are you raising the bar and giving your audience what they want? </p> <h2>H: Heavy</h2> <p>Unfortunately it’s easy to make a responsive site overly heavy in terms of page weight, which may lead to frustrated users.</p> <p>An example of a heavy site is Sony’s ‘Be Moved’ RWD. The landing page is 53 Mb in size and to some is a month’s data allowance in one page - that is not something a consumer is going to thank you for!</p> <p>Due to the size, the page takes forever to load.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0004/9230/photo__5_-blog-full.png" alt="" width="500"></p> <p>The lesson here is to ensure that you are being responsible with your page weight and QA for <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/9162-the-importance-of-speed-for-mobile-commerce">speed across 3G or Wi-Fi</a>.</p> <h2>I: iBeacon </h2> <p><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/64626-five-examples-of-how-marketers-are-using-ibeacons">iBeacon</a>, part of Apple’s iOS7 but also compatible with Android 4.3 upwards, is a way for brands to engage with their customers once they are in close proximity to a specific location and have downloaded a specific application.</p> <p>There are over 30 beacon hardware vendors already, from Estimote to Swirl, and they transmit data to your mobile based on proximity ranges via Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE).</p> <p>Marketers are excited about the opportunities, and it’s important that brands use this new technology responsibly, a notable example being Tesco trialling it but not using the technology for marketing messages yet.</p> <p>Outside of retail, the most inspiring iBeacon example I’ve seen so far is the recent “Sweeper” exhibit and installation for the UN at the New Museum in NYC which recreated a deadly minefield, in-order to raise awareness to the threat of landmines around the world.</p> <p>Using iBeacon, the installation recreated this lethal experience via an app people downloaded to their mobile, and as they walked by a beacon, visitors triggered an explosion sound along with hammering home the gory details of the attack. This then led to a donations page.</p> <p>What is impressive here is that they’ve solved the value exchange equation of seeing messages you would want to receive, and managing the barrier to entry of needing an app and Bluetooth turned on, in order to interact.</p> <p><img src="http://assets.econsultancy.com/public/imgur/qVA9vSL.jpg" alt="ibeacon" width="449" height="284"> </p> <h2>J: jQuery </h2> <p>I’ve mentioned the problem with heavy websites and the benefit of using RESS technology.</p> <p>jQuery mobile is another method of optimising the Web browsing experience for mobile devices.</p> <p><strong>It allows pages to load faster by loading the necessary items on the page straight away</strong> with the rest of the page elements loading as they are needed, which is important for user satisfaction (see ‘Loading times’).</p> <p>jQuery is a framework devised of simpler and shorter codes thus developers can implement jQuery more quickly and robustly.</p> <p>Many companies are increasingly using jQuery or other mobile frameworks such as Backbone and Zepto.js due to their advantages and it is predicted to be a big part of the future of Web development. </p> <h2>K: Killer apps</h2> <p>Killer apps were all the rage during intense platform battles. For example, Halo was Xbox’s killer app.</p> <p>The idea of uniqueness, a first of its kind and a hook that gets you talked about can be used for mobile when thinking about the key feature(s) you will deliver through mobile.</p> <p>So with a native application spend some time thinking about how you would list and PR your app and it’s killer features early in the project, not when it’s too late.  </p> <h2>L: Loading</h2> <p>Whether you are hyper tasking, multi tasking or mono tasking, <strong>the most precious resource to a mobile user in 2014 is time.</strong></p> <p>Many studies have demonstrated the negative impact of slow sites on sales. There are lots of statistics kicking around that claim that load time should not be more than five seconds, or four seconds or even one second.</p> <p>Google states that just a two second load time is disruptive to the user experience and is the maximum a delay can be. Kissmetrics say that if an ecommerce site is making $100,000 per day, then a 1-second delay could cost you $2.5m in lost sales every year.</p> <p>The moral of the story is simple; make sure your load time is as close to instant as possible and your users will be happy, anymore than this and you are increasing the likelihood of users becoming impatient, frustrated, and leaving your site.</p> <h2>M: Multi-screening</h2> <p><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/62538-multi-screening-trends-in-the-uk">Multi-screening</a>, when more than one device is used at one time, is a continuing powerful trend due to our increasing need for information immediacy and ever present human interaction.</p> <p><img src="http://www.google.com/think/images/the-new-multi-screen-world-study_research-studies_sm.jpg" alt="multi screen" width="456" height="255"></p> <p>Multi-screening is often used to investigate products, to use social media, and often we start an activity on one device and continue it on another. Research suggests that the majority of consumers using a second screen to look for TV related content are either using ‘search’, or social media.</p> <p>Twitter can actually improve live TV. Fast Web Media found that <strong>out of 10m active UK Twitter users, 60% are tweeting while watching TV, and 40% are tweeting about TV.</strong> This gives the opportunity to engage with thousands of consumers and get a conversation flowing about your brand. </p> <p>Successful campaigns use specific hashtags, for example using the brand name or brand slogan. Three’s #DancePonyDance is an example of a brand successfully engaging with users on a second screen; understanding multi-screening behaviour can allow you to do the same.</p> <p>What’s new this year is the improved ability for our devices to talk to each other.</p> <p>Examples include Apple’s Airplay, and Google Chromecast, which is fundamentally changing our content consumption habits.  </p> <p>There's also Samsung’s Chord (as part of its new mobile SDK), which enables multi-Samsung-device experiences which will open up a world of screen sharing, collaborative shopping and new opportunities with multi-screen gaming.</p> <h2>N:Native</h2> <p>Consumers love Native Apps, and the data backs it up with 86% of time spent on mobiles in Apps (according to Flurry).</p> <p>The challenge of App discovery has not gone away, neither has the need to build reach and engagement with an impressive solution that people love and use. Build it and they may or may not come.</p> <p>Launch planning, app PR, and mobile media are on the rise, as is mobile analytics and the use of social listening tools to track conversations, to ensure the user is listened to, and the experience is constantly improved.</p> <p>The benefits of native apps include the commercial opportunities, use of sensors such as location, potential for habitual use, offline mode, speed, access to camera, and they generally provide a richer and higher-class experience for users.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/public/imgur/gv49tHV.jpg" alt="" width="600"></p> <h2>O: OS Wars </h2> <p>The leading mobile Operating Systems are always evolving and expanding, meaning marketers must keep up-to-date with the latest developments to see how they can utilise them. </p> <p>The versioning evolution across platforms is very different; Apple’s latest iOS7 has a penetration of more than 90% where as Android KitKat has a penetration of around 5%. So OS fragmentation is very real.</p> <p>Brands developing apps for Q4 this year should be mindful of iOS 8 and the phablet user experience problems meaning potential changes ahead to swipes, back buttons and App layout.</p> <p>In terms of the <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/63662-eight-user-experience-improvements-with-ios7">iOS7 major redesign</a> it served to help hide call to actions and interaction near the screen edges on carousels caused problems.</p> <p><img src="http://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0003/9212/image__16_-blog-half.png" alt=""></p> <p>In a recent poll investigating which emerging mobile operating system is the likeliest to succeed, the majority voted Ubuntu Touch followed by Sailfish, Tizen, and then Firefox.</p> <p>Keep your eyes on these new players to see how interaction design evolves and exploit new opportunities that open up.  </p> <h2>P: Programmatic ad buying</h2> <p>Programmatic buying allows you to automatically buy the right ad at the best price at the right time on the right device.</p> <p>If you are a marketer that understands and implements automated buying technology then you are actually in the minority, as according to Forrester and the Association of National Advertiser <strong>67% of marketers need to learn more about it, don’t understand it, or are unaware of it entirely.</strong></p> <p>Basically automated ad buying is a way for marketers to place bids for advertising space through an automated technology.</p> <p>‘Programmatic’ ad buying refers to the different ways of doing this, and it’s taking off in mobile. <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/programmatic-marketing-beyond-rtb">Programmatic marketing</a> works by a campaign being triggered by a set of rules that are applied by software and algorithms. Marketers establish a strategy and set up these rules, which are then implemented by the software.</p> <p>For example, it can be used to send an automated email campaign to consumers that have abandoned their shopping basket on a website. Programmatic advertising is more efficient and lower in cost than human ad buying, and can be used for mobile advertising and marketing campaigns. </p> <h2>Q: QR Codes</h2> <p>QR codes work by a barcode scanner application on a smartphone processing a code, directing the user to a website or promotion.</p> <p>When used appropriately QR codes can be effective, by increasing consumer engagement with print to enrich the user experience.</p> <p><img src="http://assets.econsultancy.com/public/imgur/B8eoxn9.jpg" alt="" width="496" height="495"></p> <p>There is wide scepticism on <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/63437-qr-codes-the-good-the-bad-and-the-ugly-reprise">whether QR codes are ‘dead or alive’</a>, yet it is clear that<strong> in Asia the use of QR codes is still growing.</strong></p> <p>In China, Pernod Ricard is deploying QR codes across all packaging in-order to increase engagement and reduce counterfeiting.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0004/9358/QR-Codes-on-Wine.jpg" alt="qr wine" width="443" height="415"></p> <h2>R: RWD </h2> <p><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/64072-responsive-design-25-of-the-best-sites-from-2013">Responsive Web Design (RWD)</a> refers to a website that resizes itself depending on the device it is being accessed from.</p> <p>It works by using fluid grids with page elements sized by proportion. It’s often the first stage on a brand’s mobile journey. The problem is, it’s easy to make a bad RWD site.</p> <p>Using RWD is a step in the right direction, although due to drawbacks such as possible delayed loading times, considering the ‘next generation’ of RWD, known as RESS (see ‘Adaptive and Reiss Technology’) would be advantageous to the marketer and the user. </p> <h2>S: Strategy </h2> <p>2014 is the year to make <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/mobile-sophistication-and-strategy">mobile strategy</a> a priority.</p> <p>Mobile strategy is moving up the agenda and informing business and communications strategy. Given the complexity and opportunities of mobile, I find the best way to deal with complexity is through simplicity.</p> <p>So ask the right questions up front by seeking to understand the business and consumer context, along with the capabilities and constraints.</p> <p>Outline the mobile opportunity and then blueprint the solution budget and tactics to help make it happen.  </p> <h2>T: Text</h2> <p>It might be 2014, but don't assume text/SMS is disappearing as a valuable comms tool. It's simple, immediate and effective.</p> <p><strong>Out of all marketing text messages sent to consumers, over 95% are opened and read, with 83% being read within one hour</strong>. Redemption rates for marketing text messages can be relatively high, and due to the low cost of sending an SMS, marketers can attain a high Return on Investment.</p> <p>It’s an impressively versatile tool for global or local campaigns and is not smartphone only. O2 frequently uses this method of connecting with their O2 More customers.  </p> <h2>U: User Testing</h2> <p><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/10922-eight-user-testing-case-studies-that-achieved-amazing-results">User testing</a> is more important than ever in 2014 given the costs of creating and promoting mobile experiences.</p> <p>Testing your mobile website and/or app on your current or potential customers is an effective method of ensuring your product provides a positive user experience.</p> <p>User testing involves your typical customers engaging with your mobile website or app, interesting findings and any problems users encounter are noted by expert consultants.</p> <p>Findings often include attitude towards a brand, ease of use, and understanding users’ needs and wants.</p> <p>The consultants recommend how to optimise the user experience based on the findings. The benefits of user testing includes allowing you to fail quickly and cheaply if ideas are not viable, and implementing findings is likely to increase consumer engagement and conversion rates.  </p> <h2>V: Voice Control</h2> <p>Voice input with the likes of Google Now and Siri is becoming better and more mainstream: it’s a game changer for us all. Voice command is convenient and beneficial for drivers, by using voice instead of fiddling around with buttons, there will be a reduction in distraction leading to an improvement in safety and user experience.</p> <p><img src="http://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0003/4169/voice_search-blog-full.jpg" alt="" width="615" height="309"></p> <p>Voice is now entering mobile advertising to help create cut through and dramatise product features. Toyota implemented voice command in their mobile advert to promote a new in-car entertainment system.</p> <p>The advert mimics the car system by encouraging the individual to use voice command to choose one of two apps that are presented; weather and iHeartradio. Using voice for mobile marketing campaigns is beneficial as it engages the user in the advert giving them a memorable and richer experience. </p> <h2>W: Wallet</h2> <p><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/64271-bitcoin-mobile-payments-and-the-future-of-money">Using mobile devices to make payments</a> is a growing trend. Calisle and Gallagher Consulting Group predict that by 2017, half of today’s smartphone users will be using mobile wallets as their preferred payment method. </p> <p>PayPal is working with iBeacon to facilitate hands-free payments (see ‘iBeacon’), whilst many others are developing their own digital wallets including Google, Apple and Amazon.</p> <p>Currently in the U.S. approximately 10m Starbucks customers pay using the mobile app. The success of the app is down to the ease and speed of the service, and the way it enhances the customer’s experience, for example users are exposed to instant discounts and a reward programme.</p> <p>It helps marketers to build relationships with consumers and opens up a direct marketing channel.  </p> <h2>X: X-ray</h2> <p>Mobile is changing the way we view the world thanks to augmented reality and mobile interface design. An example is the 'X is for X-ray' app by Touch Press that is available for iPhone and iPad.</p> <p>It is a highly visual, interactive and educational ebook that shows 26 everyday objects.</p> <p>With the swipe of a finger X-ray photography of these objects are presented giving users the ability to explore the inner structure of objects with a 3D view.</p> <p>‘X is for X-ray’ is a breakthrough in how we can explore the complexity of 3D structures through a smartphone or tablet. This innovative app shows some of the new capabilities that are possible with new devices. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0004/9359/xray-blog-full.png" alt="xray" width="452" height="296"> </p> <h2>Y: Yoda</h2> <p>The following conversation from Empire Strikes Back can be applied to mobile marketing:</p> <p>Luke: All right, I’ll give it a try.</p> <p>Yoda: No. Try not. Do... or do not. There is no try.</p> <p>Do mobile or do not do mobile. The latter isn’t really a viable choice any more. So don’t set out and attempt to try and do mobile. Make it a priority and make your customers a priority. Launching with a one star app isn’t really an option is it? </p> <h2>Z: Zzzz</h2> <p>With the rising wearables trend along with Apple’s HealthKit it all points towards even more opportunities to track your quantified self.</p> <p>For example ‘Sleep Cycle’ is an app that senses your body movements when asleep in order to wake you up when you are in the lightest sleep state. A number of other sleep apps have different purposes, such as detecting and recording sounds to identify snoring issues. </p> <p>On the subject of wearables and health, various apps aid the management of fitness and food consumption, such as ‘Runtastic’, ‘Map My Run’ and ‘My Fitness Pal’. ‘Fitbit One’ logs the number of calories burned and can also measure sleep.</p> <p>‘The Lumoback’ is designed to improve posture, it involves a sensor that sends data to a smartphone, which then reminds the individual to sit up straight by displaying a stickman that mimics their current posture. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0004/9360/lumo-blog-full.jpg" alt="lumoback" width="450" height="299"></p> <p><strong><em>Econsultancy has a range of reports looking at best practice around mobile marketing and commerce: </em></strong></p> <p><strong><a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/mobile-web-design-and-development-best-practice-guide">Mobile Web Design and Development Best Practice Guide</a></strong></p> <p><strong><a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/mobile-commerce-compendium">Mobile Commerce Compendium</a></strong></p> <p><strong><a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/quarterly-digital-intelligence-briefing-finding-the-path-to-mobile-maturity">Finding the Path to Mobile Maturity</a></strong></p> tag:www.econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/64978 2014-06-10T10:13:28+01:00 2014-06-10T10:13:28+01:00 Three mobile marketing trends that didn't live up to the hype David Moth <h2>QR codes</h2> <p>QR codes have been around for ages but it’s very rare that you find anyone with a decent word to say about them.</p> <p>Occasionally we come across case studies which show that <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/9777-six-qr-code-campaigns-that-actually-worked">QR codes can be successful in the right circumstances</a>, with the right CTA, a powerful incentive and when someone forces you to scan one at gunpoint, but in general they haven’t justified the time wasted on them.</p> <p>I’m not saying that smartphone users will never be persuaded to scan advertising, however it will take something more alluring than a QR code before the technology catches on. </p> <p>And if you're still unconvinced that QR codes have failed to live up to the hype, then check out these <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/9777-six-qr-code-campaigns-that-actually-worked">10 examples of QR code madness</a>...</p> <h2>Augmented reality</h2> <p>Back in 2010 the MMA predicted that a new wave of products which combined location-based services and augmented reality would "<a href="http://mmaglobal.com/news/mobile-marketing-association-outlines-top-ten-mobile-marketing-trends-watch-2011-december-2010">not only fuel adspend but also transactions</a>."</p> <p>This obviously hasn’t proven to be the case, and I’m yet to see any truly convincing uses of AR for either practical or marketing purposes. But that obviously hasn’t stopped me from fueling the hype by <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/9842-seven-awesome-augmented-reality-campaigns">knocking out regular list posts of AR marketing campaigns</a>.</p> <p>Anecdotally, we receive far fewer press releases about AR marketing campaigns now than we did a few years ago.</p> <p><em><strong>Top Gear Magazine's AR trial</strong></em></p> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/VGwH9guifhk?rel=0&amp;wmode=transparent" width="615" height="346"></iframe></p> <p>This could suggest either that fewer brands are experimenting with AR, or that it has lost its PR value. I think it’s probably the latter as the use of AR is no longer newsworthy in itself. </p> <p>Instead people want case studies on successful uses of AR in marketing, which are very difficult to come by.</p> <h2>NFC</h2> <p>At Econsultancy we were as guilty as any of over-hyping the potential for NFC to radically alter the way in which consumers make payments and interact with advertising.</p> <p>It seems like an easy and convenient way for consumers to receive data – they tap their <img style="float: right;" src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0004/8883/nfc.png" alt="" width="173" height="200">phone, the information is transferred to the device, and they can go on their merry way.</p> <p>There have even been some high profile trials of the technology involving global brands. For example, <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/9824-visa-confirms-mobile-payments-trial-with-galaxy-s3-at-london-olympics">Visa used the Olympics to showcase NFC payments around London</a>.</p> <p>Furthermore there are plenty of NFC-enabled handsets on the market, notably from LG, Nokia, Motorola and Samsung.</p> <p>However as yet the technology seems to have been kept away from consumers, as if tech companies feel we’re not yet ready to experience it’s awesome power.</p> <p>The more likely reason of course is that the technology is not yet ready for widespread consumer adoption due to the complexities of setting up a secure eco-system that relies on the cooperation of several different industries (e.g. mobile operators, finance companies, card issuers).</p> <p>And now that Apple has decided to focus on <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/63478-ibeacons-what-are-they-and-why-should-marketers-care">iBeacons</a> rather than NFC it could be that the latter’s never fulfils its promise.</p> <h2>And to finish...</h2> <p>Here are two trends that I’m glad we’ve hopefully seen the back of forever...</p> <h3>Apps vs. the mobile web</h3> <p>Back in the bad old days people used to genuinely debate whether it was better for companies to go for a mobile app or a mobile website, as if each different business and industry should be bound by the same one-size-fits-all approach.</p> <p>Thankfully we seem to have moved on from this debate, thanks in no small part to the advent of responsive design and HTML5.</p> <p>The line between apps and mobile sites is becoming increasingly blurred, and marketers largely accept that decisions on mobile platforms should be driven by business objectives and user needs rather than simply trying to adopt the latest trendy technology.</p> <h3>“There are more mobile phones than toothbrushes in the world”</h3> <p>Not a marketing trend as such, but if you’ve ever been to a conference then there’s a 100% chance you’ve heard someone trot out this utterly unprovable and ultimately pointless catchphrase.</p> <p>Admittedly this is a rather niche bugbear, but if we work together we can ensure that the trend of using this go-to buzzphrase will also die a death.</p>