Snapchat shares the best AR tools and campaigns of 2021
Snapchat shared new insight into the best AR campaigns and tools in its “Lens of the Year” report, which highlights the growing value of AR, for various purposes.
According to Snap:
“With more than 6 billion readings per day on average, The lenses provide a unique window into the cultural moments of the year, achievements in AR innovation, and trends that have had a lasting impact. Join us as we celebrate our community and the 2021 goals that have revolutionized the way Snapchatters create, explore, learn and play.“
The big picture provides an interesting perspective on broader web trends, while also highlighting how they can be incorporated into AR applications. And with AR set to become an even more important part of digital advertising in the future, it’s worth taking note of the major trends, with a view to how you might use these tools in your own promotional efforts.
First, on the top AR trends of the year, Snapchat reports that “Little Bernie‘,’ Squid Game ‘and’ 3D Cartoonwere the app’s most popular lenses.
You’ve undoubtedly seen it all, in different forms, throughout the year, each one viewed billions of times.
Of course, two of these relate to broader web trends, not specific Snapchat or augmented reality trends, which makes them harder to embrace as branded promotional tools. But they do provide some hints as to what Snapchatters are looking to engage with, which might get you thinking about how to create viral moments with your own AR campaigns.
Other popular lenses include the “Smile” lens, which sticks a smile on your face – whether you’re actually happy or not, the “Photo Crop” lens to focus on specific elements in the frame, and ” Fire Glasses ”, which adds active flames to your virtual sun shades.
Snapchat also highlights the best music-inspired Lenses in the app, with over 1.2 billion Video Snaps created in 2021 that include audio accompaniment. Snap has been expanding its audio options throughout the year, as it appears to align with the use of TikTok-lead, which also includes its recent addition of sound clips for Snaps from popular TV shows.
The most popular musicians in the app, via dedicated Lenses, were J Balvin, Olivia Rodrigo, the Notorious BIG for a little retro flavor.
Snapchat also highlights key brand uses of AR, with product apps advancing to provide a valuable additional element and make online shopping even easier.
“AR is the future of shopping – it can help visualize not only what a pair of sunglasses looks like, but what it looks like you. Going beyond today’s 2D online shopping experience, AR makes it possible to try on fully personalized clothing. From Prada to MAC Cosmetics, there are so many ways to express your style and get your hands on the most coveted items of the year.
Indeed, Snap’s AR testing tools are evolving, including Prada’s virtual handbags, clothing fitting via Farfetch, and Zenni’s sunglasses.
Snap’s clothing fitting tools, in particular, are expected to evolve significantly in 2022, with the company’s acquisition digital sizing company FitAnalytics back in March. The addition of FitAnlytics tools will allow Snap to deliver more precise size and style matches, which will see more applications of AR clothing over time, but Snap has identified these three brands, in particular, as AR innovators for the year.
It is interesting to examine the evolution of AR and its place in the larger digital engagement space, across various applications and processes. And with AR glasses slated to start rolling out to consumers over the next 24 months, AR could become a much more important consideration, for all brands – and as such, it’s worth taking note of. these trends and consider how they apply to your future initiatives and promotions, and where the opportunities present themselves.
Really, once functional AR glasses are made available to consumers, adoption will pick up speed quickly, and you’re probably going to need to know more anyway – which is another reason why this overview of trends is valuable, in terms of planning, insight and consideration.
The options are multiplying, both for creation and use, and Snap’s list provides key insights into these trends.
You can check out Snapchat’s full “Goal of the Year” report here.