AR Advertising: 3 Ways to Amaze with Augmented Reality

Chances are you’ve heard about augmented reality (AR) before. The ability to create immersive mixed-reality experiences has been around for decades, though usually in the context of gaming.

But what about utilizing AR for advertising?

Today, advertisers can harness the power of augmented reality to create unique mobile ad experiences for customers. And, in turn, increase engagement and loyalty to their brand.

Of course, utilizing AR advertising is easier said than done. Read on to learn more about the connection between AR and advertising, along with some actionable ad examples that can inspire your team.

An Intro To Augmented Reality Ads

Augmented reality is technology used to create immersive experiences. 

Investopedia provides a more detailed definition of AR, describing it as, “An enhanced version of the real physical world that is achieved through the use of digital visual elements, sound, or other sensory stimuli and delivered via technology.”

Essentially, augmented reality adds virtual elements to the existing world. It creates a unique mixed-reality experience.

The ability to combine the real with the virtual is something the gaming and entertainment industry have been doing for decades. Only recently has the ability to utilize AR in marketing become viable for brands and advertisers.

Augmented Reality in Marketing

Everyone has a mobile phone or device today. And with mobile usage soaring, it’s never been easier to shop from wherever you are.

In a few taps on your screen, you can purchase anything from this week’s groceries to a new outfit. Online shopping has always been convenient, but now more than half of all internet traffic shopping comes from mobile devices, according to OuterBox.

Along with more and more consumers accessing the web from their smartphones, their intention is also changing. Many consumers are picking up their phones with the intent to shop. Just consider this - 79% of smartphone users have made a purchase online using their mobile device in the last 6 months.

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of smartphone users have made a purchase online using their mobile device in the last 6 months

With the growth of mobile commerce also comes an increased focus on how to bring the shopping experience to the user at home. The AR format can do exactly that. As you’ll soon see for yourself, brands can create augmented reality experiences to promote their products and services and engage consumers in a novel way.

Augmented Reality vs Virtual Reality

Along with augmented reality, there’s also virtual reality (VR). Many people use VR and AR interchangeably, but there are some important differences that affect both the user experience and your marketing campaign.

Here are some of the main differences between virtual and augmented reality according to the experts at Tulane University:

  • Augmented reality uses a real-world setting but VR is completely virtual (meaning you often need more technology like a VR headset to utilize it)
  • AR advertising consumers can control their presence in the real world, while VR controls their presence
  • AR ads can be accessed with a smartphone, VR normally requires a headset device
  • Augmented reality is a mixed reality experience, VR is entirely virtual

While AR and VR advertising both exist, for now, the former is a more popular option among advertisers. Its accessibility among consumers and mixing of real and virtual elements make AR advertising campaigns a must for mobile.

How Can Your marketing Campaign Benefit From AR Advertising

Still not convinced an AR advertising platform is right for your brand?

Don’t just take our word for it. eMarketer predicts mobile AR to be a top trend for the new year as advertisers target consumers on the go. An investment in mobile AR is a great way to future-proof your brand.

Here are a handful of the other ways augmented reality can benefit your next ad campaign in 2023.

Enhance The Online Shopping Experience

One of the biggest challenges with online shopping is not being able to interact with a product. Pictures and videos might be great for capturing consumer attention, but they don’t substitute seeing a product in real life.

AR advertising is the solution to this issue. The ability for consumers to interact with products through mixed-reality experiences can help them feel more confident in their purchase and more connected to your brand.

In recent years, NielsonIQ found that 56% of shoppers said that AR gives them more confidence about the quality of a product, and 61% said they prefer to shop with retailers that offer AR experiences.

Needless to say, AR can enhance the customer experience with your brand and even lead to more sales.

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of consumers prefer to shop with retailers that offer AR experiences

Capture Consumer Attention

Time and time again, AR advertising proves to capture consumer attention early in the purchase journey. 

After comparing multiple studies, AdWeek reported that, “consumers who use AR engage with the ad format for far longer and have deeper and more immersive experiences.” Looking at the numbers, they found 80% of users engaged with ads that utilized AR for at least two seconds. On the other hand, less than 10% of individuals studied engaged with other ad formats for more than two seconds. 

Brand recall was also 1.3x higher for consumers who were exposed to AR advertisements compared to other formats.

“consumers who use AR engage with the ad format for far longer and have deeper and more immersive experiences.”

Considering the consumer’s short attention span, this is great news for advertisers wanting to break through the noise.

Another thing to keep in mind is that the AR experience is one users must opt into. Consumers who engage with AR ads aren’t simply viewing them, but actively engaging with them. You will always know you’re getting qualified views on it.

Customize the Experience

AR advertising doesn’t restrict your marketing strategy. When it comes to creating virtual assets, you can add branded and bespoke elements to resonate with your consumers.

Many of the AR advertising examples you’ll see include elements like hotspots to reveal more information, color selectors, and even a slider to preview two variations of the same product (i.e. two different colors of a handbag).

AR empowers brands to create the closest thing to an in-person shopping experience for consumers. From 360 views to virtual try-ons and comparisons, AR advertising can elevate your marketing campaigns to new heights.

3 Ways to Amaze With AR Advertising

Now for what you’ve been waiting for - AR advertising in action.

These three AR advertising examples are just a sampling of how brands can use AR mobile ads. As you’ll see, while all of them utilize AR technology, they do so in different ways.

Model Viewer

No one wants buyers' remorse. Not only does it leave customers unhappy, but it can also have them reevaluating their feelings toward your brand.

Recent research found that 74% of U.S. adults have experienced buyer's remorse after buying items online. Their most common reason for this feeling was the perception that the purchased item was less valuable than expected. 

It can be difficult for consumers to understand the quality of a product when shopping online. Pictures and videos only do so much, while AR goes the extra step to help recreate an in-store shopping experience.

A model viewer advertisement, while not a true immersive AR experience, leverages AR assets and technology to allow consumers to interact with products from their mobile device. They experience the product in 3D with a 360 view to better understand how a product looks from any angle. 

Retailers can especially benefit from this entry-level AR advertising. From shoes and clothing to furniture and cars, the model view allows consumers to interact with your product before making a purchase.



One step above the model viewer is the ability to superimpose products into the consumer’s own setting. While the model viewer gives users a 360 view of the product, superimposing it allows consumers to experience it in their own space.

This is ideal for the consumer who wants to see how different color handbags will appear on her desk or how a couch or table will look in her living room. By superimposing true-to-life size virtual products into real settings, users can get a better idea if a product matches their aesthetic.

This type of AR advertising is already popular among consumers. Recent research by Retail Perceptions found that 77% of AR users said they use this format to see product differences, such as different colors and styles. More so than other formats, AR allows them to do this up close, at different angles, and in their own space.


Virtual Try On

Finally, we can’t forget about how AR enables brands to offer virtual try-ons. This is perhaps the most complex type of AR advertising to pull off, but can also be the most beneficial for retail brands.

Virtual try-on is a fun experience for consumers - it allows them to see a product on their own body (using their phone’s front-facing camera). This is ideal for products like glasses, hats, jewelry, and even makeup.

This type of mobile AR helps users see if they’ll like a product on them, not just in their space. Because there’s nothing more frustrating than purchasing a product that looks great on display but lackluster on yourself.

Virtual try-ons help consumers be confident in their purchase, and they can also help brands solve issues like returns. Bloomberg recently reported on one study that found consumers who used AR to try products virtually were less likely to send purchases back. This can save consumers the frustration of making a return while also helping a brand’s bottom line.

“Consumers who use AR to try products virtually are less likely to send purchases back.”


Master Mobile AR Advertising With MOBKOI

Mastering mobile AR advertising starts with finding the right partner for your brand.

It’s important to partner with a company that not only has expertise and experience with AR technology, but also in turning creative assets into compelling AR ad formats that can be served across the open web.

At MOBKOI, we’ve been honing our AR offering for years to help brands create flawless AR ad experiences that drive results. We offer solutions that help consumers explore 3D models in a 2D environment that can be bespoke to your brand, or they can choose to launch the camera to view it in their own setting. 

With AR advertising, consumers experience real-life-sized products and preview them as if they already own them. Whether that means seeing how it complements their space or virtually trying it on, AR enables it.

Get ahead of the trends and utilize AR advertising as part of your campaigns. Learn more about MOBKOI’s AR advertising options today.