3D and AR: The winning brand communication strategy
With its ability to delight and differentiate, 3D and augmented reality (AR) can augment any brand communication strategy by hitting the sweet spot connecting audience, medium and message.
- Why brand communication strategy across industries and organizations is fast pivoting around customer experience (CX)
- Examples of iconic brands mastering brand communication strategy with a touch of 3D and augmented reality (AR) tech
- How to craft a brand communication strategy like a pro
There’s a reason we associate Nike with winning, McDonald’s with family moments, and Rolex with performance. A meticulously planned brand communication strategy, whirring away silently somewhere in the background, enabling these iconic and enduring perceptions in the public consciousness. Brand communication strategy, in short, brings a brand’s magic alive. It provides customers with a cohesive, meaningful and consistent taste of the brand every time they interact with it.
Finding the sweet spot
A brand communication strategy flourishes at the intersection of audience, message and medium.
With today’s audiences hungry for immersive interactions (ninety two percent of Gen Z loves to shop via augmented reality, a tech framework designed around sensory immersion), it is clear traditional choices of message and the medium must follow suit – and pivot around the holy grail of customer experience (CX). Which makes robust commercial sense for businesses, since CX carries the potential to double revenue within thirty-six months.
Practitioners of brand communication strategy are therefore grappling with the challenge of revolutionizing their customer experience with wow moments that can stop prospects and fans in their tracks. And with 3D and augmented reality (AR), several have already stumbled upon the secret formula. Embodying the spatial revolution of See-Commerce, 3D and AR has been delivering big time for brands by storifying every touchpoint along the acquisition journey.
Embodying the spatial revolution of See-Commerce, 3D and AR has been delivering big time for brands by storifying every touchpoint along the acquisition journey.
3D and AR: sugar for the ‘new buyer’
There’s a new tribe of empowered buyers in town, and they prefer to experiment with up to 20 different channels before committing to a purchase decision. The good news for sales and marketing teams? 3D and AR allows custodians of brand communication strategy to construct compelling signposts and guardrails along many of those channels, thereby playing a modern day pied piper to serenade buyers seamlessly along the discovery – consideration – conversion path.
Specifically, 3D and AR augments brand communication strategy by
- Adding novelty to the awareness stage, allowing fans to rediscovering their favorite brands with jaw dropping new angles, colors and avatars.
- Adding clarity to the consideration phase where scaling products from e- commerce sites and digital catalogs to one’s own environment in just a few clicks reveals appropriateness with never-before levels of accuracy.
- Adding convenience to the conversion as ‘virtual trial sessions’ empower buyers with the insight they need for a quality decision.
Brands, just like fans, are getting addicted to 3D and AR
Shopify delights across channels
Shopify’s ‘Wrapped - year in music’ campaign leveraged user history data to let both fans and music creators relive and share their listening journey over the last year, with strategically located outdoor messaging fanning the flame. The brand communication strategy was to engage fans on the channels they used, and a seamless blend of online and offline achieved that target spectacularly. App downloads spiked by twenty one percent, with the campaign mentioned 1.2 million times on twitter.
P&G heals fan pain
Procter & Gamble’s campaign #LikeAGirl challenged the stigma surrounding women in sports. It turned this mindset around, encouraging girls to share pictures and videos from the sports field, eventually establishing the vibe that acting ‘like a girl’ wasn’t just normal, but cool. The brand communication strategy was to pump up confidence amongst adolescents, and with a campaign that told every girl ‘This brand gets who I am’, the communication delivered beyond expectations. Over ninety million views, more than 4.4 billion media impressions and a ninety six percent hike in positive sentiment.
Burger King burns rival
Burger King leveraged the wow factor ingrained in 3D and augmented reality (AR) masterfully, when it announced that fans would be rewarded with a free burger if they pointed their mobile towards a rival’s billboard. The action caused the rival’s burger ad to virtually blow up into flames. The campaign not only promoted the brand’s flame grill style of cooking brilliantly, but drove mammoth engagement and eyeballs – along with an over fifty four percent increase in in-app sales. The brand communication strategy was to go one up on the rival brand that had a far bigger media purse, and by reimagining both the medium and the message with a touch of 3D and AR sizzle, Burger King solved the puzzle.
Deep dive: Why exactly does a brand communication strategy matter in business?
Eighty eight percent consumers in a survey ranked authenticity as a key factor for liking and supporting a brand. Over seventy percent of brand managers prioritize audience building over sales. And over forty six percent of consumers will pay more for brands they trust. The common thread connecting these stats? They are all core KPIs, targets and manifestations of brand communication strategy.
The spoils of brand communication strategy done right are many;
- Increased visibility in cluttered markets to deeper affinity with fans.
- A competitive edge over rivals.
- Referrals and repeat business via loyalty.
- Smarter reputation management.
- Greater demand generation (which doubles up as sales empowerment tactic).
- Attracting top talent.
- Amplified business equity and ROI.
The spoils of brand communication strategy done right are many.
Indeed, studies suggest that brand communication can have the greatest impact on a company’s marketing endeavors – more than economy, pricing or globalization.
How to craft brand communication strategy like a pro
A brand communication strategy is, simply put, an actionable set of guidelines that defines essence, establishes positioning, builds connect, creates differentiation and nurtures attachment for the brand amongst demographics and markets that matter to it. A brand communication strategy must optimize opportunity at every window through which a business strikes conversations and engages with its audiences. This covers a wide genre of elements and touchpoints like visual identity (signage, symbols and imagery), mission-vision-positioning statements, slogans and taglines, ads, mails, social media, podcasts, radio, events, in-app messaging, in-store communication, presentations and pitches, accounting and billing literature, onboarding of new joinees and behavior of frontline and support teams.
The function calls for multifaceted expertise. Leaders and founders who work closely with strategy, market research, marketing, psychology, neuroscience, PR, storytelling, influencers, sales, and finance and technology in the course of their regular duties will naturally have an edge when it comes to conceiving impactful brand communication strategy and customer narratives that hit key business goals.
Irrespective of industry or niche, the fundamental frameworks of a brand communication strategy follow a set of tested, universal steps;
- Decode pain points and wish lists of target demographics and segment into buyer personas.
- Blend business targets, category and UVP (Unique Value Proposition, or differentiated promise) to establish brand positioning.
- Translate the positioning into a clear brand voice and relatable messaging metaphors, ensuring everything stays close to the organization’s overarching purpose and vibe.
- Storify and amplify the core message compellingly across the right channels.
- Integrate presence cross media: Modern discovery experiences are typically a blend of offline and online, and order rates for omnichannel shopping (vis-à-vis single channel) are four hundred and ninety four percent higher.
- Establish guidelines and KPI’s for periodical review and refinement.
- Rev up momentum by plugging-in the right talent and resources.
- Document learnings into proprietary playbooks teams can contribute towards and refer to.
- Champion a brand-first mindset across hierarchy and roles.
- Keep things simple, consistent and memorable.
Winning tip: The cornerstone of all brand communication strategy is persuasion, and nothing lets businesses master the outcome better than storytelling. Going into 2023, the biggest storytelling trends and tactics will be immersive, visual, data driven and user generated. With its ability to immerse audiences in visually gripping narratives, tap into behavioral data to refine the experience in real-time and produce potentially viral moments that users love to share on social media, 3D and AR checks each box in style. The app-free and gadget-less web version – Enhance 3D and AR Solutions is a frontrunner in the space – and allows manufacturers, brands and startups of all shapes and sizes try out this fast growing trend with minimum fuss. The journey begins with a bold, curious and exploratory mind.