Augmented Reality Marketing: How Craft Breweries & Wineries Are Drinking It In


Booze is big business. There’s no shortage of distilleries, wineries, and microbreweries out there. But getting noticed as a new brand means going beyond any visible point of difference. That’s why Augmented Reality Marketing is shaking things up in this very traditional sector.

In an industry where a lot of products trade off on subtle differences in taste, quality, and preference (which to the uninitiated can sometimes be a moot point) there’s an ongoing need to make beer and wine brands stand out.

Yup, where alcoholic drinks are concerned, there’s still a lot to be said for shelf appeal. While more established brands can rely on their reputation and loyal fan base, incoming challenger brands need something extra.

Wineries and Craft Breweries

A visually striking label or distinctive bottle or can shape can only go so far. Once a consumer’s need for the expected information is satisfied, they’re searching for the unexpected – a sense of intrigue that entertains as much as it informs.

To meet these challenges, and to satisfy the needs of younger drinkers will almost instinctively look for brand information online via social media, many breweries and wineries are turning to Augmented Reality Marketing to offer a digital brand experience that’s grounded in a real environment.

Bringing Labels To Life

One company that’s excelling in this space is Living Wine Labels – the creators of several unique label-based, mobile app-activated AR marketing campaigns. Its most notable examples includes Chateau St. Jean (a touching tribute from the winemaker herself), 19 Crimes (complete with ‘live’ confessions from the criminals featured on each bottle) and Gentleman’s Collection (a somewhat meta commentary on the magic of AR).

Augmented Reality label

There’s even a Walking Dead-themed wine that activates a short animation depicting a zombie attack (rather than a scene from the popular TV show) when the label’s read. Needless to say, these impactful stories contribute to the overall brand appeal and offer even the most discerning connoisseurs an opportunity to consider what these wines offer.

More Than Marketing

However, aside from marketing; as topics like provenance, production, and sustainability become increasingly important to consumers, there’s an opportunity for wineries to demonstrate more transparency in the way they operate.

Whether they want to showcase the quality of their produce, or their bottle recycling efforts – or simply illustrate the beauty of their sundrenched Californian vineyards; the use of Augmented Reality offers a viable, engaging, and affordable solution for wineries of all shapes and grapes.

Crafting The Correct Conditions

Craft beer continues to have a good run where consumer popularity is concerned. There are now some 7,000 breweries operating across the US alone. But while the market’s buoyant right now, there’s certainly danger of saturation. This could mean that, in a similar way to wines, even the most distinctively presented craft brew is in danger of being lost among similarly-styled competitors.

But Augmented Reality Marketing isn’t just limited to label innovation. It’s also a great way to evoke a specific sentiment or associated experience. After all, drinking is a social, experiential phenomenon and, where AR’s concerned, it presents an opportunity to create the perfect conditions for enjoyment.

A great example of this is Old Irish’s Virtual Journey to Ireland. When this craft beer brand decided to enter the Georgian market (the Near Eastern country – not the US state) the marketing team used a combination of Augmented Reality and street activation during a promotional event.

The result was as staggeringly surprising as it was innovative for those who participated – and the idea of ‘building’ the very pub in real life that the participants found themselves in within the filmed AR experience was a stroke of genius.

(Can we call this conventional AR? Well, given the interplay of the digital and physical worlds in this particular instance, we can argue the case that it is).

All things considered, there are many different ways in which breweries, wineries, and distilleries can use Augmented Reality to their advantage – to ensure their brands gain broader recognition and to demonstrate their heritage, quality, and approach.

Given that consumers carry their mobiles with them, on-pack activations make a great deal of sense. But this technology also offers a lot of campaign potential too, meaning AR is already another viable weapon in a marketer’s armory.

The only limit, it appears, is imagination…

Still not clear on how you can use augmented reality to boost your brand’s marketing?

Contact the experts at Didjet today!

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