This week, Unity will be attending Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity for the second time.
Each year, the brightest minds in the creative world come together for a week of networking, knowledge-sharing, and learning. The festival is all about the future of creative storytelling and understanding how brands can reach and engage consumers with the newest technology.
At the festival, we are showcasing how Unity, the world’s most widely used creation platform, can give brands and marketing agencies, the tools they need to create, reach and captivate their audiences.
One of the hottest technologies that consumers and brands are actively excited about is augmented reality (AR), and more specifically, AR for advertising and marketing. Many creatives see this as one of the most powerful ways to get a brand’s message directly to key audiences.
In anticipation for Cannes this year, we surveyed 1000 creatives within advertising and marketing to gauge a better understanding on their comfort level, technical competency, and enthusiasm towards AR, including what it means for the future of storytelling. And what we found was very telling...
The key takeaway is that consumer demand for AR marketing is growing faster than brands are able to keep up. Additionally, according to the survey results, creatives see technical challenges as their number one barrier to success.
When we asked respondents:
“What obstacles do you come across when marketing AR campaigns to consumers?”, lack of knowledge on how to use AR and technical challenges were the top two answers.
Similarly, when we asked respondents “If you implemented AR in advertising, what challenges did you face?”, cost and technical challenges were the top two answers.
But it was clear that AR is not going anywhere. When we asked respondents “What is the likelihood that you’ll be considering an AR campaign in the next 12 months?”, only 19% of people said that were not likely to. That means almost half of all respondents know AR will be part of their plans in the next year.
We also found more than half of the respondents see increased client demand for incorporating AR ads into their campaigns. Additionally, the majority of respondents (78.4%) felt positive about AR’s use in advertising.
So, overall, what does this tell us? Well, it was very encouraging.
We believe there’s an opportunity to educate marketers and creatives on the simple, powerful, and robust tools and services that Unity has to help create rich, interactive experiences.
As a way to help close this gap, we’re announcing two exciting new products to make building AR experiences even easier.
Responsive AR Ads, announced today, are an approach to ad units that give more control to the user, giving them the option to interact with rich content.
It starts as a 3D-rendered ad unit and gives users the option to enhance their experience if they choose to. Not only does this give more control to the user, but this avoids brands having to use an unengaging fallback experience for their ads because the 3D ad unit is rich and interactive.
It’s the perfect segway into making users more comfortable with AR ads. This provides brands a friendlier, less intimidating way of inserting AR technology within ad campaigns.
The ability to use Unity as a library, announced just yesterday, allows brands that are developing native apps for iOS, Android or Windows to add AR functionality from Unity into their apps without having to rebuild their apps from scratch or to hack together their own unsupported solution, saving tons of time and energy.
In addition to these two tools, we announced AR Foundation earlier this year, a purpose-built development framework that enables developers to build AR apps and deploy across both iOS and Android.
Here’s a tutorial video from GDC 2019 that shows you how to use Lightweight Render Pipeline and our AR Foundation package to achieve amazing AR results:
Excited to get started on building incredible AR experiences? Check out these resources to get started: