It looks like Snap’s foray into augmented reality billboards last year was successful, as the company has returned with two more outdoor advertisements for its Snap Originals series.
Now through Sept. 24, Los Angeles residents and visitors will have the opportunity to interact with a billboard at 1008 W Sunset Plaza advertising the fourth season of The Dead Girls Detective Agency and another at 1009 W Sunset for the new series Dead of Night.
Both billboards utilize Snapchat’s image recognition AR technology. Users scan the embedded Snapcode with the camera of the Snapchat app for iOS or Android to unlock the experience.
After unlocking the Lens, users are prompted to line up their camera view with the billboard, at which point the ad will “come alive” with an AR experience. The AR effect on the billboard for The Dead Girls Detective Agency opens a portal displaying trailer footage. In the other, the arms of the undead — one grasping a smartphone playing clips from the show — emerge from the Dead of Night ad.
However, as is the case with marker-based AR experiences, users don’t have to be present on Sunset Blvd. to interact with the AR content. Scanning the codes in the images above and using the picture of the billboard as the marker works as well.
Snap had previously used the blend of old-school advertising and new-age tech to promote the series Bringing up Bhabie. According to a Snap spokesperson, the series performed well, with more than 10 million views within 24 hours of its premiere.
And this is not just a case of Snap dogfooding its tech. Among the brands to implement the image recognition capabilities of Snapchat in their outdoor, point-of-purchase advertising, or print promotions are Nike, Blizzard Entertainment, Doggystyle Records, HBO, Netflix, and the NBA.
Snapchat does face competition in the field, with Facebook, Google, and Zapparusing their image recognition technologies for branded campaigns. Nonetheless, it appears that Snapchat enjoys a comfortable lead as the go-to platform for blending outdoor and print advertising with AR.