Deciding which tools and channels to use is key in formulating robust marketing strategies. Of course, lots of factors go into that decision. These include the types of products, customer research and data analysis, brand values, and cost, to name a few. Notably, printables remain among the most popular marketing tools. That’s to the dismay of some marketers who believe they’re antiquated and should go extinct. Yet, disposing of such extant tools wouldn’t be wise. Perhaps, the answer here is to level up printables. In other words, use augmented printables!
Ironically, the argument that printables are unbecoming of this age is exactly why you should use them more. Today, brands are using digital channels in marketing all the time. Digital ads are present everywhere and that turns many consumers off. Using printables would be a bold move to catch their attention once again. The ‘what’s old is new again’ adage applies well here.
Still, to ensure an element of novelty, though, you could use augmented printables. Augmented printables are those which customers can scan to unlock exclusive digital content. This content can be of any kind from educational content to coupons and everything in between. Thus, using augmented printables means your audience gets the best of both physical and digital marketing worlds.
Now, let’s go over some examples of printables that we come across everyday and turn them into augmented printables! Some of these aren’t even looked at as marketing tools generally, but can become so using AR.
Pictures are a huge part of any business running on touristic attractions. People visiting historical sites, museums, and theme parks are always keen on snapping shots to share with loved ones. For instance, PhotoPass is an integral part of any Disneyland experience. It allows visitors to buy professional pictures taken of them by Disney photographers during rides and whatnot. Normally, visitors get to choose select pictures for print or have all pictures delivered to their homes on CDs.
This process could use some Augmented Reality. Instead of the CD, the visitors could get one picture as an augmented printable. Then, scanning it would generate all the rest of the pictures in AR. You could throw in some videos as well or any other fun content that makes the experience more memorable. Talent agents could also use the same idea of pictures as augmented printables for celebrity meet-and-greets.
Logically thinking, you may feel like catalogues aren’t valuable anymore with the rise of E-commerce. But, millennials have always had a reputation for defying most people’s logic. According to the DMA, millennials enjoy receiving catalogues in mail and love their imagery.
So, if you’re in the furniture industry, you should totally continue sending catalogues. Better yet, you could turn your catalogues into augmented printables. That way your lovely millennials could scan the catalogues and bring the furniture items to their homes before buying. Also, you could allow them to make a purchase through the augmented experience.
Say your brand will be present in a trade show soon. What do you think attendees would be looking forward to seeing from you the most? Any answer other than giveaways is wrong! That’s why brands are always looking for interactive ways to give away freebies during events. Utilizing posters as augmented printables in a treasure hunt setting is ideal in such cases.
Imagine having different posters around different locations in the venue of the trade show. Each augmented printable gives a clue to the location of the next one until attendees eventually find the giveaways. Not only would that be a mighty entertaining experience, but also each poster could promote one of your products. By the end of the hunt, attendees would have their giveaways and would know about all your products.
Although they aren’t necessary printables, billboards could be spectacular getting the same augmented treatment. You can apply the same concept as the posters, but have the billboards scattered all around a certain city. These augmented billboards would be an excellent fit for the movie industry. MCU fans, for example, would do anything to learn new info about Avengers: Endgame.
4- Business Cards
Speaking of events, networking is a major highlight of any business event. Accordingly, business cards are commonplace there. There are too many that it’s hard to stand out. Some people stand out using innovative designs. Others stand out using augmented printables. You could augment your business card to display your elevator pitch when recipients scan it. Knowing that your cards have extra value, recipients would be more likely to keep them.
We believe augmented brochures are such powerful tools as augmented printables. So much that we published a blogpost about maximizing their use. Mainly, a brochure’s power lies in its versatility. Brochures fit in the mail, during events, and pretty much anywhere. This versatility allows brochures to contain different kinds of content. No matter the content, augmenting it would add more layers of awesomeness to it.
6- Restaurant Menus
This one is for the world’s mushroom haters who order the perfect pizza, but forget asking to remove shrooms. Imagine being at a pizza restaurant and receiving a menu that allows you to customize your pizza in AR. It would be lots of fun creating the pizza of your dreams using this augmented printable. Then, after ordering, you get to see a timelapse of your augmented pizza going through different stages of preparation.
Establishing a solid feedback system with customers is very desirable for all brands to ensure quality. To encourage customers to give feedback, some brands like to employ reward systems. However, in order to get their rewards, customers usually have to go to websites or social media pages. Consequently, some customers end up zoning out and forget about the whole deal. One solution to this issue is a unique form of augmented printables; augmented receipts.
After users receive their receipts, they can scan it, rate the service, and get their rewards. Everybody wins and the process would take only a few seconds.
Sure, we’re living in the age of Whatsapp, Messenger, and Skype. But still, nothing beats a good ol’ postcard. It takes a certain commitment to send one now, but it always shows. You could go a step further and augment that commitment by adding AR content to the postcards. If you’re traveling, you can send augmented postcards with videos of your travel highlights. For holidays, you could send carrols along with your augmented printables. The choices are endless!
9- Student Workbooks
Today’s students are going through a lot. Honestly, any initiative to ease up their lives is basically a charity act. Since they practice regularly, we can make their days easier by turning their workbooks into augmented printables. After solving problems, students can scan them to teleport teachers to their study areas to explain the solutions. That would amplify the impact of their practice and help them understand the subjects they’re studying better.
Scratchcards are handy in multiple industries. They’re a great way for customers to redeem purchases. Though, the scratching itself is frankly borderline annoying. So how about we turn scratchcards into augmented printables? In telecom, for example, buyers would need only to scan the cards for their credit to automatically recharge. That would save a lot of time; the scratching, washing hands after scratching, and dialling the codes.