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Extended Reality in Marketing: Should Brands Use XR?

Extended reality, or XR (augmented reality, virtual reality and mixed reality), offers unique opportunities for brands to engage with customers in new and exciting ways. We talked to Toly and Tetiana from Magic Playbox, an XR studio that specializes in creating immersive experiences for brands, about the current state of extended reality and how it can be used effectively in marketing efforts.

extended reality studio magic playbox founders Tetiana and toly

What’s the difference between Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR)?

Virtual reality immerses users in a fully simulated digital environment, completely replacing the real world with a computer-generated one. Augmented reality, on the other hand, overlays digital information onto the real world, enhancing the user’s perception and interaction with their physical surroundings. XR, or extended reality, is an umbrella term for both of these technologies and “mixed reality.”

Generally speaking, VR is best suited for learning or training experiences — whether it be teaching employees how to operate machinery in a simulated environment or allowing students to explore locations or do experiments that may not be easily accessible or safe in the real world. On the other hand, augmented reality is ideal for enhancing real-world experiences, such as providing customers with an interactive way to preview furniture or creating a guided tour of a museum.

How can brands use extended reality?

One of the earliest mainstream AR experiences was Pokemon Go, which allowed users to see virtual creatures in the real world through their mobile devices. Since then, brands have been using AR to enhance their marketing efforts.

Tetiana points out that cosmetics brands are making good use of this technology, allowing shoppers to try on makeup through AR, while the music industry has been using interactive billboards to give fans a new way to interact with artists.

Brands can connect with their audience through engaging, entertaining and helpful augmented worlds the same way Pokemon Go connected with people – through their mobile devices. Brands can also engage with customers by creating Instagram filters or providing an interactive preview of products.

What about the metaverse?

Everyone is excited about the potential of the metaverse, which is essentially a network of interconnected virtual realities. Whether it’s Mark Zuckerberg’s vision of the metaverse or another virtual experience, Toly and Tetiana note that the metaverse is still in its early stages with limited opportunities for brands to participate — for now.

Eventually experiences like ordering a pizza in a virtual pizza shop and having a real pizza appear later at your door in real life are on the horizon. They believe that this type of seamless integration of virtual and real-world experiences will create new opportunities for brands to connect with their audiences.

The metaverse will allow brands to “destroy layers between the virtual world and real world,” says Toly.

Overall, virtual and augmented reality offer unique opportunities for brands to engage with their audiences in innovative ways. As technology continues to advance, we can expect to see even more exciting applications of XR in the world of marketing. Whether you’re ready to dip your toe in now or want to wait for the right opportunity down the road, XR is something every brand should keep an eye on.

Contact Magic Playbox to learn more about their services here, and talk with Magnitude today about whether XR makes sense as part of your overall marketing strategy.