Alternate Reality or Augmenting Reality?

Even as the retail world’s tides remain ever changing, certain characteristics remain afloat: companies are still looking for creative and effective ways to differentiate themselves from a sea of positioning statements and promotional waves that never quite break on the shore of consumer receptivity. After years of searching for and developing a better way to personalize the consumer shopping experiences and further find ways to interact with consumers, the retail market has finally gotten their sea legs through the utilization of a once exclusive technology, which was originally used by NASA and Boeing in their proprietary product development programs. What is this amazing technology that is well-positioned to further enhance the future of consumer experience, you ask? Augmenting Consumer Reality.

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First off, let’s define what the word “augmenting” means. It is a way to expand, enhance or boost an already accepted practice. Secondly, let’s explain the difference between what we know to be virtual reality, and the concept behind augmented reality. The drop off lies within the personalized experience of the consumer. While the virtual reality user sees an entirely computer-generated virtual world, the augmented reality user sees their physical reality enhanced with artificially generated images (www.vrs.org.uk/augmented-reality/how-it-works.html). Getting a clearer picture of what the potential CMOs are seeing?

Marketers are beginning to cultivate point of sale environments incorporating this technology, using it in the breakdown of explaining features, components and color skews of their products. The tools and technology of AR not only engage consumers by allowing real-time visualization and virtualization of potential purchases on their person, or perhaps in their homes (this one is said to be saving marriages, check out what Lowe’s is doing with AR in the next couple years, here), but in their future developments, Ninthlink is on the cutting edge of reinventing and reinvigorating the point of sale transaction; aiming to create new brand experiences with a layer of highly customized personalization and articulate the most comprehensive product information the world has seen yet.

Check out how Ikea, and PepsiCo have enhanced the consumer experience using AR.

*Blog post written by Intern, Kendall Valencia

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