There are already a number of big predictions for 2015. Royal births and NASA space landings aside, 2015 will see a significant change to the world of media—and, in turn, a further evolution in the advertising landscape. Innovations in technology mean we are able to merge our experiences between print and digital media, allowing the two platforms to operate in complete synergy.
By the time Christmas lights are being switched back on, the distinction for readers between what they are reading in print and how they are behaving online will be completely seamless.
Leading the way
The concept began with magazines such as Marketing Week, Stylist, Shortlist and The Drum introducing ‘augmented reality’ content using companies like Blippar. Recently, the FT launched a Blippar service for its coverage of Davos, while brands such as Pepsi and Skoda are using augmented reality to engage consumers with featured content. It has quickly become a fun and easily accessible way to connect brands with a variety of audiences, from targeted customers to leisurely browsers.
Added value is key
The most important consideration for brands, however, is the user journey. Consumers want unique content; quirkiness and novelty isn’t enough anymore. Instead, the experience has to be useful, engaging, timesaving or shareable.
The philosophy that DRAFTED Media has adopted aims to add this experience to every aspect of our monthly print magazine and bespoke content solutions agency. By downloading Blippar’s free mobile app, readers can buy every item they see; access exclusive celebrity video interviews; watch behind-the-scenes fashion shoots; check out the menu of a featured restaurant; book themselves into a hotel they’ve just read about; enter a competition and much, much more. The options are limitless, all through the mobile phone in your pocket.
Unsurprisingly, consumer demand for this type of content is growing, so the challenge is to ensure that whatever the readers’ natural ‘next step’ is, publishers are always one move ahead—allowing the additional content to be accessed by simply opening an app and scanning the page.
A new world of advertising opportunities
Of course, this naturally opens up a whole new world of advertising opportunities for brands. Until now, print could only offer its advertisers ink on a page, whereas today we can build print adverts with instant access to a brand’s digital platform—extending reader engagement, interaction and e-commerce conversions.
In turn, brands are no longer limited to the specifications of the page. Beauty brands, for instance, can strengthen campaigns with insightful video tutorials or engaging style advice, injecting a deeper level of personality and character into a flat advert and therefore developing a deeper connection with the reader.
Brands must live up to publisher reputations
With the rise of social media, augmented reality and content marketing, brands have, to all extents and purposes, become publishers. With a wealth of great material all over the web, brands must live up to consumer expectation and provide both quality and quantity with content that is relevant and timely.
For example, events such as Fashion Week provide brands with a unique opportunity to use technology to engage their audience. Attendees could benefit from an immersive, sensory experience, with paper brochures or bespoke magazines handed out, filled with Blippable content so that readers can naturally explore anything from pre-order pages to exclusive competitions.
Furthermore, the Blippable content could extend to all fans of the brand, ensuring that a limitless number of guests could attend the fashion show, digitally. Post-show reports will never be the same again, with pictures of outfits worn on the catwalk coming to life from a paper page. Although the brand is gaining invaluable exposure, the consumer is rewarded with information, entertainment and intrigue.
Don’t fear the future
As we venture further into the digital age, many industries are finding they have to adapt to keep up. For some, this means small tweaks to strong foundations. For others it means rethinking and updating their entire model. For all, however, there’s an opportunity to open up a new avenue of communication with consumers. With emerging technology providing a platform to elevate media to new, exciting and revolutionary territory, 2015 is shaping up to be a year full of exciting and groundbreaking progress.
About the Author
Kyle Goodwin is the Founder and Managing Editor of DRAFTED Magazine, the first consumer title to fully bridge the gap between print and digital media.
Kyle has played a key role in DRAFTED’s growth and strategy since its inception over two years ago. He has a passion for digital media, and walks the talk with DRAFTED magazine, which, built around Blippar, is the first consumer title to fully bridge the gap between print and digital media.
By downloading Blippar’s free app, readers can hold their phone any content in the magazine and readers can buy every item they see; access exclusive celebrity video interviews; watch behind-the-scenes fashion shoots; check out the menu of a featured restaurant; book themselves into a hotel they’ve just read about; enter a competition and much, much more.