Visuals are an important part of advertising, so it’s not surprising that so many companies have jumped on the augmented reality bandwagon, offering tools that visualize their products in a magical and memorable way.
Here we take a look at some pretty amazing promotional uses of this new tech that work with common webcams, giving everyone a chance to experience augmented reality — a trend that will be big in 2010.
This BMW interpretation ties in with a TV ad that sees artist Robin Rhode using the Z4 as a giant paintbrush (think big-scale finger-painting with the car’s tyres). Downloading the software, printing out the 3D symbol and holding it up to your webcam will allow you to see your own miniature Z4 on your screen, which you can then drive around using keyboard commands, creating your own Rhode-esque car painting.
Taking the trading card into the 21st century, the Topps “3D LIVE” range offers baseball (and now also football) stars that leap from the special cards onto your desk, as viewed via webcam. As well as creating miniature holographic representations of the players — a neat enough trick that would impress most kids — the concept is taken a step further with the angle that you can control the player’s signature moves via your keyboard.
As well as augmented reality, this example uses clever face-tracking technology to stick the original 3D CGI head of Optimus Prime atop your own visage. The campaign to promote “Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen” also includes a hidden holographic message from Bumblebee, again developed using the original 3D model of the robot that appeared in the movie, suggesting CGI films may be ripe for more AR apps in the future.
What we like about Doritos’ take on the tech for the Brazilian market is that the webcam code is printed on the back of the chip packet, adding value to something normally disposable. Perhaps this also means less chip bags littering the streets. Holding up the code on the Sweet Chilli chips packets initiates the appearance of a little cartoon character, which can then be used in an extended online game.
Erring on the functional side of promotion, the USPS Priority Mail Virtual Box Simulator is a wickedly clever use of the tech that lets users compare the size of an item they need sent to the size of boxes available from the postal service, by seeing how well their item fits inside a transparent box. Although not particularly high octane excitement, it does illustrate the practical use of AR which is yet to be fully explored.
These kind of applications work particularly well with a techie audience, or in this instance a Trekkie one. The front cover of certain versions of the Star Trek movie on DVD and Blu ()-ray doubles as a webcam code to initiate the “cadet orientation” program. It offers a holographic tour around the USS Enterprise (that appears as a hovering apparition on your screen), incorporating a look at the bridge, and best of all, a trigger to fire the ship’s weapons, complete with sound effects.
Created for the launch of Wrigley’s “5″ chewing gum in France (although the site is also available in English) this interactive example of AR sees five symbols (each representing one of the five gum flavors) becoming a different track that only plays when the webcam can “see” it. The desktop DJ experience is probably best explained by watching the demo video above, populated appropriately by masticating teens.
Although many items of apparel can be bought online, sunglasses are one of those tricky products that you really need to try on to ensure you look more chic than geek. Ray-Ban’s Virtual Mirror (ably demonstrated here by YouTuber NickHearne) lets you virtually try on glasses (after a quick bit of face-mapping). The software lets you move your head around to see how the shades look from different angles. Depending on the opacity of the glass, you can even see your eyes through some of the shades. Seeing this app in action makes us think this could be where the real commercial future of AR lies.
John Mayer, Eminem and Julian Perretta are three other musicians that have dabbled with AR as a way of making their music videos more compelling, but this effort from the Lost Valentinos — with each printable code representing a member of the band to be arranged as you see fit — is a great example of how to keep it tight. In addition, the band’s site doubles as a video gallery for fans to share how they interacted with the AR by uploaded webcam video clips.
This time round we’ve saved the worst for last. How best to promote feminine hygiene products? With an augmented reality white bunny of course. We think the world can do without this irrelevant foray into the AR arena that assumes a female audience will be blown away by an incredibly basic application of the tech.
I try to keep you informed as much as possible with the latest and greatest news in the Social Networking World, Search Engines, and with anything new and interesting with the Internet. The information posted at Twitter mostly points back to here.. Be sure and Bookmark this site.
How To Find Your Website Niche
Increase Your Following By Going Niche, How To Find Your Website Niche.
First of let me explain a few things about finding a targeted or niche industry to do business in. There are only a handful of companies who are able to be the all-in-one retailer online or off and can get away with it, and in many cases the places are still within a niche. For exmpale Wal-Mart; you may think that they do anything and everything from fixing your car to selling groceries. But in fact they are following a very specific goal and niche. The goal that wal-mart is trying to accomplish is to allow you to do all your general shopping from them within one stop. This is why they have hobbie related goods, electronics, recreational, groceries, and simple car maintenence services and goods. Lets not forget that they also have toys (which are conveniently on the opposite side of wal-mart as anything else a child may need like clothes.
Wal-Mart has the goal in mind to be able to sell you all you would ever need to get through the month and to do it at a discount price. They are not known for quality, they are only known for cheap products at cheap prices.
So you are probably asking what in the world this has to do with choosing a website niche to operate your online store, but in reality this concept has everything to do with your store. You must narrow down exactly what you goals are and what price ranges you want to sell within (if you are selling products or services. And you also must narrow down your products to be very niche. I recommend going as niche as possible to allow you to rank easier for those specific term or keyword phrases. For example: assuming that you would like to sell crafts for the house but your not sure what products to use, I would recommend finding the products that you are the most familiar with and enjoy selling. In this example we will choose candles. But in order to sell a niche product you will want to be more specific than just candles or crafts. You will want to sell scented candles, or fake candles, or multi-colored candles. Once you have narrowed the niche down to its core you can then break it down even further to get the most out of your website. For example you may want to then allow users to search by size, color, or scent.
All of this may seem to in-depth but trust me if you are going to start a website that sells products you are going to want to narrow your selection down to its core to find out what your niche is based on product, price, and how much you love are endorse the product that you are selling.
There are several ways to gain media attention for your website or online business. Some of these are through press releases, and news-wires. But what if you had a chance to be in a magazine, on a TV show, or interviewed by one of the main network television channels? Some companies offer a guaranteed placement service where you only pay if you get the job. Here is one of those companies:
My Media Match – Here is an excerpt from here website:
Okay, well who am? Cick Here for my bio, or email me and I’ll prove it and send you my 8 page resume full of specifics and measurable results. Believe me, it is exciting to see your name in a recognized magazine. Your heart races and you want to jump up and down like a kid who wins the big prize; I know first hand having been featured in Entrepreneur Magazine as a Business Coach. I also know first hand from my book being featured in Cosmopolitan, Complete Woman, Zink and more. I want you to know that you are not alone on your journey.
I still get that excited when one of my clients lands a story or a tv interview , and we jump up and down together.
Let me tell you a bit about the Media Match program. It is a wonderful publicity program that matches your expertise to a journalist, TV show or website that is looking for what you have. It’s a bit like Babe Ruth at bat, when he hit, he hit a home run and when he missed he struck out.
A Lesson From The Babe
‘How to hit home runs: I swing as hard as I can . . . I swing big, with everything I’ve got. I hit big or I miss big. I like to live as big as I can.’
Babe Ruth created a World Record that survived many, many baseball seasons because he kept showing up at the plate with his bat in hand. With the Media Match program I show up to pitch you to the media when they are working on a story. That makes all the difference in the world and when it hits, it hits big. Publicity is not a science, and if you story is right for the journalist and the timing is right on the pitch, you have a media home run.
The greatest thing of all is you get to keep putting your money into your business. You never pay the enormous fees for a private publicist; try $3,000 to $6,000 a month with no guarantees. You also don’t pay $2,500 for a sidebar mention in a magazine. As a member of Media Match you pay $189 a month or a quarterly fee of only $500, with a guarantee. If you are not picked up for a story in your first 3 months, we continue to pitch for you on us, no matter how long it takes to find your perfect match.
There are also many amazing benefits of being in our network, a 60 minute strategic consultation with a Master business strategist, a connection to the Harvard Community, learning about promotional opportunities, being listed as an expert and speak on one of the nations highly respected news services, as well as being featured on our high traffic websites.
If you are working 24/7 on making your dreams come true, doesn’t it make sense to have a pro in your corner watching for opportunities for you? Give us a call 310-379-9620 and we’ll give you a complimentary 15 minute consultation so you can judge for yourself. I promise you’ll find it time well spent.
I look forward to talking with you soon.
All the best,
Whenever I come across a company or service I love to share with you my findings
This is a completely unsolicited posting about Media Match.
Link building to increase Targeted Website Traffic
Link Building to increase your Targeted Website Traffic in 7 simple steps
Search engines are the main reason that most people build links, but its not the only reason why you should do it. Knowing all the benefits to link building can help you grow your site even faster.
Most webmasters and Search Engine Optimization Specialist will use Link Building to leverage search engines and increase rankings on a website. This is the main reason for sure but it is only the tip of the iceberg. The benefits that you can gain from link building can be astronomical and can change the entire way your online company is structured. Basically it all comes down to traffic + content.
You need Targeted Website Traffic in order to grow your website and get your content out to the masses, and this is where most people start off with link building so they can get traffic from the search engines. This strategy is a good one, but it misses the best part. The internet is bases on one concept; Networking – so you need to network with others, you need to share your info with others, and you need to collaborate with others in your industry. Lets face it, you will never know all the answers & when you think you have seen it all life is sure to surprise you.
I’m sure your asking how all this comes together to make your site popular and gain Targeted Website Traffic… so allow me to connect the dots.
Other websites in your targeted niche have already done the hard work and become popular and are getting tons of traffic to their website, so you should network with these people and befriend them. You will be surprised at the knowledge you will gain by doing so, and in return you can share your knowledge with them. These partnerships make your company thrive and allows you to toss work back and forth amongst yourselves. It also means that you can ask them to link to your site whenever they have a posting that talks about your specific specialty.
Another way to get links that produce traffic is through controversy. If you bad-mouth a company, person, tv show, or topic you may find yourself at the front of a traffic frenzy that will get people talking about you and linking to your website where you started the controversy from.
How do I find these popular sites?
To find sites that are getting a lot of traffic you should first do a search for common industry standard words that best describe your industry and find the websites that seem to always be at the top for a majority of your searches. Then take their URL and enter it into www.Alexa.com or www.Quantcast.com (I recommend Quantcast) to find out how much traffic they are really getting each month.
The best way to start out by getting links is to:
- Add you website URL to your email signature
- Write an unsolicited blog posting about the person or website that your hoping to connect with (not SPAM – make sure it is a quality blog posting with a great review)
- Email the webmaster of the company you want to target and start up a conversation with them with the ultimate goal of networking and building a relationship with them.
- Compliment other websites, and send an email to the webmaster of the site you are complimenting, and ask for a link back to that page
- Give testimonials, give your testimonial to websites with the condition that they post your link (remember this is an endorsement, so don’t endorse a product, service, company, or website that you do not believe in)
- Talk bad about a company to stir up controversy
- Post a question on the target websites forum or blog that will intrigue them enough to want to talk to you.
These are the best and quickest ways to build links to your website that are bound to get you targeted traffic with a limited budget or no budget at all.
Have more suggestions? Post a comment and let me know.
Amazon Store WordPress Plugin
WordPress Plugin for your website that lets you have a complete Amazon Store
Up until now the only Amazon Store Plugin for WordPress has been a crappy snippet of I don’t know… All I know is that it sucked and looked bad, and didn’t include a cart, and ooohhh that’s right they called themselves a Amazon Niche Store but it doesn’t have a shopping cart. To me that makes the other plugin is ‘NOT a Amazon Niche STORE‘. Im trying to lay the sarcasm & frustration on very thick because I have been looking for a solution like this for years. But it looks like my wait has finally paid off. Now you can have a completely functioning WordPress Niche Store without much effort at all. And since it uses Amazon’s API it automates the entire plugin once it is setup. And of course since it is a plugin it can work with any template. And if that wasn’t enough it also includes a default template if you don’t want to take the time to find one or use your current WordPress template.
This is the real Deal – not a cheap wanna-be Fake Amazon Niche Store. But as it goes I can only tell you that it is here & I will be posting a link within a few days, so be patient with me as I test this thing out to the max.
Amazon Store WordPress Plugin
Link will be posted in a few days.
WordPress Amazon Store
Google introduces Sidewiki
Google has finally introduced the sidewiki, its a very interesting way of allowing users to add information about any page and any website. To see the Google Sidewiki you need to download the latest toolbar for your compatible internet browser (I use Firefox). Then you just click on the button called Sidewiki and it will give you a left navigation that allows you to add your comments about any site, and even more specifically any page). Sidewiki is sure to bring a lawsuit as soon as shady companies, or larger companies get bad comments posted. Im curious how well this new service is going to work. In theory it is an amazing idea and it allows Google to take in all the information and use it to make for a true human driven search engine based on quality. This mixed with Link Building and the other several hundred thousand pieces to the Google algorithm makes for a really great data provided to Google who can then ultimately use it to better the search results.
When we think of radio, newspapers and television and three giants monsters of marketing to the everyday person, we often think about how the Internet is quickly finding its foothold into helping these become even better than they have been for many years. There is no doubt that the digital world is becoming the way of the future. Knowing this, it’s very important that you don’t try and ignore it if you want to stay current with everything around you.
The reason that you see the younger generation and the children able to buzz around so very fast on just about anything electronic that they pick up is because they have had time in school and at home to practice while gaining knowledge and understanding about what they’re using and how it can make their life so very enjoyable if they want it to.
At the same time, I think it’s just great if you want to refuse an easier way of doing things and continue your life doing things the old fashioned way. I see nothing wrong with anybody choosing what it is they want to do with their life and how they want to live it, to a point of course. There’s just so much opportunity here for so many of us to use the Internet to tell others who we are and what we want them to know.
If you are always looking for new and interesting ways of creatively marketing online, I have an idea here that you might want to look in to if you feel it’s the right thing for your business. It has to do with google maps.
Im sure that there is no doubt in everyone’s mind that ranking in a great relevant place for google is just the golden ticket for starting and keeping things on track. You will want to be sure that you find yourself over at the google maps website pronto.
What you’ll want to do once you get there is go ahead and list your business with them. This way when another person comes along the way looking for many great areas on the map, your business will be located right in there with a description put in place that gives them a good idea if you are what they are looking for.
The place that you go to submit your business is the Google’s Local Business Center. After you find yourself there, go ahead and login to your google account, click on “Add New Listing” to enter your business information.
After you finish up with the submission of your business and all of its information that will paint a picture and help to easily explain to others surfing along, you will want to think about uploading a picture that will allow the user to rotate 360° which will give the prospective customer an idea of what to look for.