Augmented reality (AR) is a technology that overlays digital information, such as images, videos, or 3D models, onto the real world. Unlike virtual reality, which creates a completely artificial environment, AR enhances the existing environment by adding virtual elements. This is typically done through smartphones, tablets, AR glasses, or specialized AR headsets.
By integrating digital content with the physical world, this virtual technology allows users to interact with both worlds simultaneously. With many industries adopting AR, the global market share is projected to reach USD 1,109.71 billion by 2030. In this article, you will understand the growing importance of customer engagement and how AR can stimulate it.
How Important is Fan Engagement?
Augmented Reality (AR) has the potential to revolutionize fan engagement across various industries, particularly in sports and entertainment. Here are five ways in which AR is expected to enhance fan experiences:
Fan engagement has become a prominent term in the 21st century, and it entails ways of fostering the active participation of fans through different methods to establish strong customer bonds. A Choicely article suggested that out of the many sports professionals interviewed, 71% indicated that fan engagement was crucial in attaining a company’s goals.
Consequently, entertainment companies, including iGaming, are diversifying their portfolio to enhance customer participation. For example, one of the most diversified products in the casino industry is online slots, which usually incorporate myriads of themes to ensure customers have a wide variety. Themes like ancient mythologies have become popular with similar slots to the Book of Dead, such as Legacy of the Dead, becoming prevalent. Expanding product offerings allows companies to stand out from competitors and attract new customers.
Social circles are essential to fandom, as passionate fans can easily influence their friends into following a brand. Some studies revealed that 92% of customers trust word-of-mouth recommendations from their friends than they do other means of marketing. Furthermore, the more engaged fans are, the easier it becomes to understand their preferences and opinions, offering insightful information for future improvements of a sports business.
By improving player engagement, gaming companies can grow their revenues significantly. Choicely indicated that emotionally connected fans have a 306% higher customer equity than those who are only gratified. These benefits accrue from the long-term commitment of engaged and loyal fans, who are more likely to reuse a company’s products and services.
Virtual Fan Interaction:
AR enables virtual fan interactions that go beyond traditional means. Fans can use AR applications to virtually meet their favorite athletes, musicians, or performers through holographic displays or interactive experiences. This not only creates a more personal connection but also extends the fan experience beyond the physical boundaries of the venue.
Stimulating Fan Engagement with AR
AR is an immersive technology that improves sporting experiences in numerous ways. Using AR allows the creation of more personalized sports content related to a fan’s favorite team or player. AR apps, for instance, allow users to design and share 3D animations, filters, or stickers that celebrate their sports favorites. This virtual technology also allows enthusiasts to simulate real-life experiences of fields and courts.
Online sports betting platforms that offer sports like racing games, can allow users to simulate realistic experiences, resulting in more excitement. AR can create virtual race tracks in the user’s physical environment, allowing them to watch the events as if they were happening right before them. Gambling platforms can also use AR for marketing and promotions by offering exclusive AR-based bonuses or rewards for users engaging with the platform through AR features.
Enhanced In-Home Viewing:
AR can elevate the at-home viewing experience for fans by introducing interactive elements to traditional broadcasts. Viewers can use AR applications to access additional content, such as player stats, live social media feeds, or interactive polls, directly on their screens. This not only keeps fans engaged throughout the broadcast but also provides a personalized and customizable viewing experience.
Gamification of Fan Engagement:
AR can be leveraged to gamify fan engagement, turning it into an interactive and competitive experience. For example, sports fans could use AR apps to predict game outcomes, participate in virtual fantasy leagues, or engage in location-based AR games related to their favorite teams. This gamification aspect adds an element of fun and competition, further deepening the connection between fans and the content they follow.
A business that succeeds in engaging fans will ultimately experience significant revenue growth and financial performance. Fan engagement is the heartbeat of every business, especially in a world where every organization seeks to stand out. By integrating AR into their offerings, sports businesses can foster customer relationships that translate to greater revenues.