First we had the barcode label attached to documents that could be scanned, typically reserved for warehousing inventories. Then along came QR codes, user friendly, attached to posters, brochures, business cards and letterheads. Using the scanner on your mobile device, a QR code allows you access to coupons, websites and social media profiles. Today, however, the world of tradeshow printing has enveloped interactive print to increase consumer interaction from beyond what they see on a printed page.
Understanding Augmented Reality in Printing
Interactive print, aka augmented reality, is more than just a sci-fi concept. It is the bridge between the world of print literature and the socially interconnected, globalized culture in which we live in. Thanks to the Internet, apps and social media, i.e. Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and Instagram, consumers want to have more interaction with practically everything. They want more, and interactive print offers much more than just words on a page. Using augmented reality in printing, you can:
- Add clips of music, such as company jingles, theme songs, holiday sounds, or mood setting music, to a trade show printer flyer
- Link to YouTube videos, video messages or educational/informative lecture style videos on your business brochure
- Incorporate social media links via apps, such as Layar the leading augmented reality provider for mobile apps, on business cards
- Enrich a printed newsletter by using augmented reality to add photo slideshows to increase the visual interest of your text
- Enhance a card, such as for holidays, corporate milestones, or direct mail services via new customer offers, with interactive printing offering a voice or video message
Tradeshow Printing Possibilities
When looking to ramp up trade show printer services, augmented reality exponentially increases the possibilities of a printed page. For starters, interactive printing grants you the freedom to transform your booth into a 3D space. Marxent Labs provides some of the top brand names, from Pepsi to SanDisk, with augmented reality content. Interactive printing is explored in this YouTube video, featuring a tradeshow printing for the science company Emerson at one of their tradeshow booths. As you can see, you can take a printed poster, sign or banner and transform it into a three-dimensional experience that elevates the flat booth into a world beyond the visible eye. All users need is a piece of technology, aka a smartphone, iPad or eReader. Alternatively, you can provide devices, i.e. tablets, on the spot at trade shows to ensure that your interactive printing message is not lost to those without mobile devices on hand.
Taking Tradeshow Printing to the Next Level
Back in the day of ink-only printing, your options were limited by color, texture, design, graphics and font. Now that has completely changed. Those companies who are streamlining marketing efforts and pushing forward with user-centric advertising efforts have fully embraced interactive printing. In order to be on a competitive scale with your top contenders, it is time to bring augmented reality into your mindset. The great thing about this technology is that you can make the rules by thinking outside of the box of traditional printing. Consider how augmented reality can increase your effectiveness in getting your message across to your target consumer during your next tradeshow printing campaign.