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The future of sports marketing is augmented reality

October 14, 2020

AR for Sport Marketing

That feeling of being in a crowded stadium cheering for your team, your face painted with their colors, and waiting outside the locker rooms to meet your idols.

Isn’t this a crucial part of the whole sports experience that people look forward to, no matter which sport they love?

Of course, these days, when stadiums are closed and supporters need to watch matches from home, it could be these amazing on the side experiences are set aside for a while.

But it doesn’t have to be like this: thanks to Augmented Reality technology, it’s easy to give supporters and sports enthusiasts the engaging experiences they’re asking for.

The world of sports is no stranger to AR, and many important teams partnered with brands to let their fans live branded experiences with their favorite clubs. Let’s see some case studies before we deepen into how AR can help sports marketing.

Lavazza and Arsenal have launched a web-based augmented reality experience to allow fans to engage with their team during the Covid-19 lockdown.

Arsenal is advertising the AR experience on social media, offering fans the chance to see the team’s players come to life in mobile web browsers.

Fans participate in a competition that raffles off an Arsenal jersey with the entire team’s autographs and a discount on a Lavazza coffee pot in limited edition.

In this way, Arsenal can maintain visibility with fans using their smartphones to stay connected during the lockdown. At the same time, for Lavazza, the AR experience is a way to stand up to soccer fans as traditional sports marketing is currently shut down due to pandemic restrictions.

Telekom (the largest telecommunications company in Germany and Europe) has created a promotional Augmented Reality solution called Telekom Olimpia.

Fans can collect photos of the best athletes sponsored by Telekom in the virtual space that appears around the Telekom points.

The users need to collect all five photos of the athletes by clicking on them after registering for the game on their smartphone or tablet to receive a T-point gift.

Augmented Reality is expected to be a real game-changer in the world of sports marketing.

Creating WebAR campaigns on platforms like Aryel can help supporters unlock extra information or digital objects from promotional materials. Furthermore, it allows brands to collect customer information and offer personalized advertising while boosting retail sales and fan involvement.

But how to use Augmented Reality in this field? Easy to say, we collected some ideas for you, but remember: the sky’s the limit!

  • Thanks to AR marker technology and 3D assets, users can be photographed with a 3D asset of their favorite player and/or the whole team at the stadium or in a club flagship store.
  • Using geolocalization, users can check stats updated in real-time (e.g., markers and data not present on the board)
  • Brands can release limited editions of merchandising with unique content that users can experience in AR (e.g., athlete’s video, audio, 3d avatar, etc.…)
  • Places of interest in the stadium can be valorized, showing the club’s history, historical photos, etc.

All these solutions aim to sell spaces to advertisers: at the moment, only big brands can afford to show their adv in the most important stadium worldwide.

Thanks to platforms like Aryel, which allows creating AR campaigns without massive budgets, it is now possible to reach targets interested in advertising in the world of sports. Still, it cannot access the classic forms that involve substantial investments.

At the same time, AR & WebAR could also be inserted in existing relationships with advertisers to make the current offer even richer in value.

From printed media like stadium entrance tickets, posters, sticker packs to branded gadgets and even the stadium itself, AR opens plenty of new sport marketing possibilities.

Even more in a historical moment like the one we’re living in, keeping in touch with your favorite team or athlete is more challenging than ever; but AR technology can help close this gap.