Augmented reality (AR) is becoming more common in social media. After Snapchat pioneered it, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and TikTok have launched their own lenses, filters and effects. In the process, AR is showing its value not only for branding and entertainment, but also for commerce.
How is the pandemic affecting marketers’ interest in using AR in social media?
The shutdown of many retail stores spurred some marketers to invest more in AR as a way to offer virtual try-on and other experiences typically only available in-store. Several social media properties now enable try-on within their apps.
How many people in the US will use AR on social networks in 2020?
We expect that 43.7 million people will use social network AR at least once per month in 2020, representing 20.8% of social network users. Snapchat will be the predominant platform.
What new AR features are available on the social platforms?
Snapchat introduced several updates in June, including machine-learning models and Local Lenses. Facebook is rolling out AR advertising, and Instagram is adding try-on features. While TikTok and Pinterest are very early in their AR development, they should not be ruled out as eventual competitors.
What are the main marketing use cases for social AR beyond entertainment?
The most prominent examples are to virtually try on makeup, sunglasses and shoes. It’s also being used for cause-related awareness and location-based overlays that augment a user’s real-world environment, though the pandemic has slowed progress on the latter front.
WHAT’S IN THIS REPORT? This report explores how consumers engage with AR on social platforms and why the marketing use cases are expanding.
KEY STAT: There will be close to 50 million social network AR users in the US this year, according to our March 2020 forecast.
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