Snapchat’s Latest AR Ad Format for Brands – Sponsored 3D World Lenses

The millennial audience is an elusive one, forcing marketers to look for new, innovative ways to engage them. One thing we know for sure about millennials? They are obsessed with Snapchat. In fact, according to Snapchat’s stats, 67% of Snapchat’s 178 million daily active users are between 18 and 34. So, it should come as no surprise that If you’re trying to gain traction with this market, you need to be considering Snapchat. One of the platform’s newest releases might just present the perfect opportunity for you move the needle on your key millennial-related marketing objectives.

Snapchat’s 3D World Lenses

Snapchat understands that when it comes to advertising, millennials prefer experiences as opposed to interruption. Taking this into account, Snapchat’s newest ad format, Sponsored 3D World Lenses, gives users the opportunity to interact with objects and characters in real-world environments. These objects appear on the Snapchat camera interface, making it possible for users to move around and place the objects within the real-world environment they are viewing on their phone screen.

The ad format is an evolution of the 3D World Lenses that Snapchat actually launched a few months ago with their own characters to get people familiar with the feature. You may recall the dancing hotdog from earlier this year.

Snapchat Dancing Hotdog

More recently, the platform integrated Bitmojis into their 3D World Lenses, which are personalized avatars that can be used on a number of digital platforms. This allowed users to place their own Bitmoji characters in the real-world, which was Snapchat’s first step towards AI integration.

Fast forward to present day and now Snapchat is monetizing 3D World Lenses by allowing brands to create their very own 3D objects and other AR effects – for a fee of course. It is presenting a huge opportunity for brands. In fact, according to Snapchat, “1 in 3 of daily active users check out Lenses every day. On average, campaigns with Lenses drive a 19.7 point lift in ad awareness, a 6.4 point lift in brand awareness, and a 3.4 point lift in action intent.”

Currently, brands can purchase 3D World Lens advertising opportunities directly from Snapchat. Various targeting options are available, too. Advertisers can opt to have the lens served to custom audiences based on demographics, such as an age group or gender, location, interests, or run a blanket national campaign. Lenses can also be attached to a Snap Ad, meaning it will be promoted outside of the traditional Lens gallery. This allows users to swipe up on a video ad to use the lens.

So, what exactly does “character” mean? For starters, a character can be anything ranging from an inanimate object – such as a pencil or a shape or a mascot or spokesperson, such as the Geico Gecko. In addition to imagery, brands also have the ability to place text in the Snapchat screen.

If you have a key brand identifier, character or object, and your target audience includes millennials, sponsored Snapchat Lenses could be an exciting new opportunity to explore. If you don’t, that doesn’t mean you can’t get in the game – it just means you need to get creative. For example, an airline company could design a 3D World Lens featuring a plane from their fleet that users can place or move around in their environment. A sports team may want to utilize one of their best players or even their mascot in this instance. Floral shops can even find a way to leverage this feature with a Lens of a flower bouquet that users can “gift” to their friends in their real-world environment.

Let’s take a look at how some other brands are leveraging this new feature. Bud Light allowed users to interact with a concession vendor selling its namesake beer. To promote the launch of the Bladerunner 2043, Warner Bros created a 3D World Lens featuring one of the flying cars in the movie. Both of these ads are using Snapchat’s technology in a way that provides an interesting, unique and fun experience for the user.

Budlight Vendor Snapchat

How To Get ROI with Snapchat’s 3D World Lenses

From a marketing perspective, Snapchat’s new feature can be utilized in several capacities. However, the first step to employing it successfully is understanding your key objectives and then weighing whether this new ad format will help you reach them. I’d recommend exploring further if you have the following objectives (along with a millennial and/or GenZ target):

Product Launch: Let’s say you’re an established brand looking to launch a new product. In this case, a 3D Lens could be used to introduce the new product, showcase innovative features or highlight benefits to your target market. However, if your brand is new to market and you are launching a new product, this feature might not be as effective as the lens doesn’t enable users to swipe or click to a point of purchase.

Event Marketing: The geolocation filter allows you to target specific regions. If you have a brand event, such as a pop-up shop or if you are an event venue, this could be a very interesting way to drive attendance.

Brand Awareness and Discovery: If you are looking to get your brand in front of more people or simply want to connect with a new target, Snapchat’s 3D World Lenses are a really great way to reach new audiences and get them loving your brand. By exposing users to your brand with a positive experience with your brand, they will be more likely to recall it when it comes time to purchase.

If you have questions about Snapchat 3D World Lenses or aren’t sure where to start, drop us a line.

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