Webinar Recap: 4 Lessons From Nestle’s Winning AR Strategy

August 11, 2021 • Written by Camera IQ

If you’ve been paying attention to Nestle’s marketing recently, you’ll know it’s been pushing the boundaries of what brands can achieve with digital channels. One example is a winning AR marketing strategy that offers branded experiences and shareable content. It seems straightforward, but in practice, Nestle’s AR drives full-funnel engagement across social channels — often 10x more than traditional placements. And it’s all organic traffic.

To help other brands replicate this success, we hosted a webinar with Nestle marketers behind these campaigns to discuss their process and how Camera IQ’s technology made it possible.

AR is not “one and done”

When building AR assets, it’s important to remember that it is not single-use technology. In fact, there may be an unlimited number of use cases where AR is applicable if you can find extractable value.

For this webinar, the speakers mainly focused on B2C marketing. Nestle uses AR assets to address many needs under this category — any effect or experience can support a campaign launch or new initiatives, promote seasonal or holiday-focused products, or feature as evergreen content and testimonials. “You can be relevant anywhere,” said Rubén Alonso, Digital Innovation Manager at Nestle. “We leverage our brands, or our biggest asset. The idea is that we bring augmented reality into the different segments of these brands. You see pet owners, coffee lovers…that’s the beauty of AR — everyone can use it.”

And that’s just B2C marketing — Nestle subsidiaries also use AR to promote its B2B offerings. One example includes apps that digitally render Nespresso machines within a smartphone camera, showing restaurant owners how the equipment will look in a given space. Elsewhere in the organization, Nestle draws on AR tech for employee training, project collaboration, and even remote assistance.

Self-serve tools help you scale your strategy

Many brands will outsource their AR initiatives to external companies, believing they don’t have the expertise to manage the technology. But in Nestle’s case, Camera IQ made it possible to bring their AR marketing in-house. Tom Nixon is the Photography & Videography Lead at Nestle’s UK content studio, which effectively acts as an internal creative agency that leverages self-serve tools to operate at scale.

Nestle’s AR strategy is to quickly produce engaging assets it can release across its global social media channels. From there, it makes the content available to regional offices. This approach means a single Nestle AR effect can be localized and distributed across twenty accounts without an external agency.

“We’re really pushing to have that expertise in-house to do everything from organic social [to] TV work in strategic campaigns from start to finish,” Tom said. “We’ve actually found that our model is up to 80% more efficient than using some of our external partners.”

AR alone is not enough

The organic potential for AR is immense — consumers are constantly browsing for new effects to include in their Stories, and any audience member can become an advocate by sharing their discoveries with friends. But as much as we’d love to say brands only need to create AR assets to be successful, in practice, it’s just one component of a larger strategy.

Nestle had to lay down a foundation to amplify each experience, extending its reach across a given audience. For a single KitKat campaign, that might demand the following:

  • Gifting KitKat products to influencers, complete with a QR code directing them to the effect
  • Paying influencers to include swipe-ups to the effect in their content
  • Developing an in-feed carousel that details how the AR experience works
  • Adding trackable links in Nestle social media profiles to help audiences find new effects
  • Designing a suite of additional gifs, each featuring the effect on models, to amplify each story

The exact techniques will vary depending on your product and market, but most AR strategies require similar steps to gain the organic traction of other formats. Thankfully, the results are worth the effort — Alex Reay, KitKat’s Global Community Manager, noted that AR assets frequently see 10x the engagement of traditional social posts. “In terms of reach and views, considering that they’re organic, they were huge, which is great to see,” she said.

“It’s not enough to simply create the experience,” Ben Stein, VP of Customer Success at Camera IQ explained. “If [you] just publish it, but don’t promote it … not as many folks are going to see it. So having someone on your team like Alex, who’s dedicated to promoting it, getting the AR experience out there and into the hands of consumers is super important as well.”

Make AR part of your social checklist

For AR to succeed, it needs to be a consistent part of your social strategy. Effects and experiences should be treated like any other creative element, much like traditional posts, videos, and shareable stories. The good news is the right AR tools can make asset creation and publication a seamless part of your process.

“When we turned to [the Camera IQ] team, from the day of the request to actually [publishing] the filter, we managed to do that in eight working days,” Tom said. “Which is quite phenomenal, really, considering that we managed to onboard the whole team in that time as well.” Furthermore, during the webinar, these skills were at the point that Greg Bland, a graphic designer at Nestle’s UK studio, could recreate assets from scratch in a few short minutes.

We’d like to thank Ben, Rubén, Tom, Greg, and Alex for taking part in such an informative and exciting webinar. If you have more questions about Camera IQ’s capabilities, contact us or request a demo today!


If you want a sneak peek at a demo, watch how Nestle uses Camera IQ to create an AR campaign for their upcoming product launch in less than 5 minutes.


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