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What’s The Use Of Augmented Reality In The World Of Print?

There has been a lot of talk recently about using augmented reality to enhance the customer experience and to bring a digital element to printed material, but what’s the use of augmented reality in print?

What is Augmented Reality?

Augmented reality can be loosely defined as imposing sensory elements over a real world environment that is individual to the viewer’s perspective. Some of the recent and more well know examples would include Pokemon Go and Harry Potter Wizards Unite. If you have ever chased a Counfoundable to level up in the Dark Arts you will know exactly what I’m talking about…

But how does AR for gaming transfer into something more tangible for the print industry?

How Has AR Been Used For Marketing Purposes?

As well as being a fun way to spend an afternoon gaming whilst out and about, the growth of AR has provided a new way for customers to be delighted and surprised by a depth of interaction that is sometimes difficult to obtain in print.

IKEA allows customers to visualise their furniture in their own home using their online app. HP developed Aircards using a QR code on the back of a printed postcards to question the customer as to their favourite holiday destination and then to display that destination – via smartphone – on the front of the postcard.

Using augmented reality in print allows customers to unlock ‘bonus’ features such as videos, competitions, games and more, providing a fun and innovative way for customers to access brands on a personal level.

What’s The Future For The Use Of Augmented Reality?

In the current climate, with the growth of online sales, it seems likely that we will begin to see a larger shift towards the use of Augmented Reality for ‘trying on clothes’ at home, or testing make up shades without having to set foot in the store – ideal for inclusion in print brochures.

In direct mail, we may see flyers from restaurants or hospitality showing their social distancing measures, or QR codes that can be scanned to take a customer straight to interactive menus or the booking page.

AR allows an extended human element to the tactile nature of print. In essence, AR and print used together in a meaningful way provide the best of both worlds – the tactile and sense based print materials are combined with a personalised interactive experience.

Augmented Reality And Web2Print

Augmented reality, like the move towards online shopping, is likely to grow in light of the covid-19 pandemic.

Whilst AR is becoming a more affordable option day by day, it’s likely that if you have a client that wishes to create AR content, they will want to use that content over and over again to make the most of the resource they have invested.

Using web to print storefront software will allow you customer to log into their own client portal and attach their AR details to a variety of personalised branded templates meaning their content can easily be used over and over again with little fuss or hassle for either them or you.

A web2print storefront also allows numerous other benefits whether being used internally by a large organisation as a staff portal – or being used by a printer dealing with many larger businesses that need their own client portal to order their branded print products.

Flex4 OPS

The Online Print Solution – the OPS – has been developed by Flex4 and is based on over 15 years’ experience in designing, developing, and supporting web to print solutions for the print industry both in the UK and overseas.

Flex4 have an experienced eCommerce team with skills, experience, and expertise in business development, marketing, project management, software development, website management, and digital marketing.

Our objective is to help your business to both grow print revenues and to reduce administration costs for a better margin and a more efficient process.