By MJ Anderson
Differentiate your offering with increase customer engagement and retention.
Your ability to deliver value for customers is dependent on your mastery of many different technologies. Successful companies can master the requisite technologies and use them to differentiate themselves in a very competitive market space.
AR as a business is more analogous to your day-to-day print operations than you may think, meaning your onboarding process for this technology can and will be quicker than most other “new tech” cycles you have been through in recent years. If your business typical of the industry there are certain operating realities that are just a basic fact of life.
- You have capital dedicated to equipment leases or monthly payments.
- Your ROI is driven by capacity and output volumes.
- Usually you view software as a necessary evil rather than an opportunity to monetize the investment because its built into your operational costs.
- You may only be able to differentiate yourself in the market through operational excellence.
- You are tolerant of risk if the business case is there.
If you are like most in the space today many of the above statements are true. Now let’s look at how changing your mindset or the way you understand Augmented Reality may assist you in moving forward with a clear differentiator for you and your clients.
Imagine your AR software investment as a virtual machine
Today you receive files from clients that you process, print and deliver. What if you could offer the designer that is currently giving you print files the ability to create AR content too? What if you could charge your customers for access to that “virtual engine” the same way you sell press time? What if your employees or your client’s employees could create virtual content in conjunction with everything that is coming off the back of your printing appliance and you owned that solution and the process?
After boxing, delivering or mailing this output how great would it be to continue to be a part of the AR content management process throughout the life of the printed document? How about metrics? What if you could provide analytical reporting on the consumers’ interaction with your printed product? How much more value could your salesforce talk about with existing clients and new prospects? Lastly, what if the math and the business model were familiar to you and were based on adoption rates with flexibility to grow with you and your client’s needs?
Augmented Reality has a significant potential to reinforce your position as a though leader and open up nontraditional revenue streams that will not disrupt your existing inkjet operations. Everything proposed above can be done right now, without significant changes to your business process or more importantly your human capital investment. According to an IDC report on AR and VR Future Growth, Mixed Reality Services bought by enterprise will be a 162-billion-dollar marketplace by 2020. Just a side note, this total exceeds all money ever spent over the last 70 years in T.V.
Many brands have already begun to think strategically about Mixed Reality, which means they are looking for service providers and business partnerships. It stands to reason, if you don’t tell your clients about AR’s potential to solve their communication problems, then someone else will.
M.J. Anderson is a frequent speaker at industry conferences and events where he shares his expertise in increasing marketing relevance through tools like mobile apps, video, augmented and virtual reality. Contact him at MJ@realityblu.com to discuss application opportunities, new revenue streams and how AR can differentiate your offering in a crowded market space.