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Earlier this week, Facebook announced to test augmented reality (AR) ads onto the news feed to attract more advertisers.

Ty Ahmad-Taylor, Vice President Product Marketing at Facebook made the announcement at the marketers’ event hosted by The Social Network. The event highlighted how Facebook plans on advertising for the Christmas holiday season. Demo ads were presented by Ahmad, one where his face was incorporated into Candy Crush gameplay footage and the other, where shoppers could virtually test out makeup and sunglasses on their face, thereby, converting the ads into virtual fitting rooms.

At 2017’s F8 developer conference Keynote, Mark Zuckerberg confessed that he thought of Augmented Reality in the context of AR glasses only. But, that’s clearly not the case anymore as Facebook changed its course by bringing AR to their messenger platform for developers as well as to their camera platform. Now, it is bringing the same AR experience into its news feed by giving chance to advertisers to test out the new AR ads.

Facebook is looking forward to introducing AR ads to more industries in the future but as of now, it is working with companies that have physical ads. It is working with companies like ASUS, Nike, Sephora, and Kia to create AR experiences on its Messenger app. In fact, ASUS noticed 10 times higher user engagement on the app that used AR experience than those who did not.

AR Ads appear like regular ads on news feed but there is a “tap to try it on” option with AR capabilities. You click the button, try the product virtually and if you like it, go ahead and make the purchase.

Initially, it was tested by Michael Kors. It let users try on the sunglasses using the AR effects. Now, brands like NYX Professional Makeup, Pottery Barn, Sephora, Wayfair, Bobbi Brown, and King are also planning to test their ads later this summer. This feature will allow users to interact with the virtual version of fashion accessories, cosmetics, and furniture before actually buying them.

Facebook is also bringing Shopping on Instagram to Stories. Shopping on Instagram was launched last year and allowed brands to tag their products on News Feed posts. Now, they will be able to do the same with Stories. This feature will be made available globally to all brands that have enabled shopping on Instagram before the Christmas holidays.

Lastly, Facebook announced a new Video Creation Kit consisting of tools for advertisers to incorporate images into templates of mobile video ads. This will help them set up video ads easily to step into the advertising game more effectively.

For more information on Facebook AR ads, check out the Facebook’s official blog page.

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Tech writer at the Packt Hub. Dreamer, book nerd, lover of scented candles, karaoke, and Gilmore Girls.


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