No longer are print ads solely one-dimensional. While print is still a mainstay for businesses, the over-saturation of advertising in the market forces brands to think outside the box to reach consumers. Now technology is bridging the gap between the print and digital worlds, providing the consumer with a truly interactive experience.
Using thin LEDs and batteries embedded in the page, Motorola’s print ad for Moto X in January’s Wired magazine allowed users to change the phone’s color in the ad by tapping the color pallet at the bottom of the page. The ad promoted the phone’s customizable options without users having to first visit the brand’s website. Nivea created an ad that functioned as a solar powered phone charger, using the tagline “with Nivea’s sun protection you don’t need to leave the sun for anything, not even to charge your phone.”
Lexus brought print and mobile together with their 2013 ES Sports Illustrated ad. When laid over an iPad, the print ad came to life, depicting the Lexus ES turning on its headlights and driving through the night. Entertainment Weekly actually had a real smartphone integrated into an ad, displaying video and live tweets promoting CW’s new TV line-up.
Smartphones are becoming increasingly more affordable, and it is estimated worldwide smartphone users will reach 1.75 billion in 2014. That’s billion with a capital “B.” For the first time ever, mobile apps topped PC Internet usage this year, and as smartphone adoption increases, that trend will surely continue.
Leading the augmented reality and interactive print market is the mobile app Layar. Amassing over 38 million downloads, the Layar app is available for iOS, Andriod, BlackBerry and even Google Glass. Layar allows the user to scan print materials labeled with the Layar symbol to access extra digital content, allowing print magazines to engage the user on their mobile device.
But Layar isn’t limited to print advertising. Customers can scan food packaging at the grocery store for information about a product’s ingredients. Real estate agents can utilize Layar to provide 360º property tours. Even business cards can take it digital, giving users the ability to interact on social media.
This is just the tip of the iceburg of interactive advertising. Makes your average print ad seem archaic doesn’t it?AD Vice