Augmented Reality Extends's TV Effort looks to make virtual vacations a little more "real" via the use of augmented reality technology to extend its television advertising campaign.

Beginning this week, the company has set up a microsite,, through which people can use their Web cameras and computer microphone to convert a special "glyph" on print and e-mail advertisements into scaled-down, 3D-animated versions of 10 U.S. cities including New York City, Denver, New Orleans and Las Vegas.

"We wanted to create an experience that is warranted in that kind of space, and we felt augmented reality and vacation was the right fit," Vic Walia, senior director of brand marketing for, tells Marketing Daily. "The augmented reality that has been done in the past -- the majority has been very gimmicky. We wanted to take it and apply some utility and functional reality to it."



The augmented reality program uses's claymation mascot character "Smart" (voiced by actor Ed Helms) to guide people through these cities. While touring, users can take part in various unique activities, like getting married in Vegas, riding a bull in Denver or attending Mardi Gras in New Orleans.

"We're an online travel site. People are experiencing our brand online, anyway," Walia says. "We're giving people a deeper experience. We're providing a useful tool here, which is a way to experience a city without actually going there and understanding what's happening there."

In addition to the virtual activities, the augmented reality also taps into and to include real-time weather and activity updates for people planning their vacations to one of the 10 cities. Users can also take a picture of themselves in the virtual cities to share on social networking sites.

"It's not the entire city, but the major landmarks are prominent," Walia says. "It looks very similar to what you would expect the city to look like. We went painstakingly through them in detail." will begin promoting the augmented reality technology through a print advertising campaign aimed at the technical market (e.g., Wired and Macworld) and travel markets (e.g., USA Today and American Way magazines) this week, Walia says. The company will also use PR and social media to inform consumers about the site as well. The company intends to spread the message -- and the AR glyph -- as the effort develops, Walia says.

"If consumers are engaged with this offering, this will have legs of its own," he says. "We'll develop more [domestic] cities and international cities."

2 comments about "Augmented Reality Extends's TV Effort ".
Check to receive email when comments are posted.
  1. Brian Hayashi from ConnectMe 360, May 3, 2010 at 3:27 p.m.

    There is some unclaimed, low-hanging fruit on the augmented reality tree: the ability to insert Santa into a scene, and then take a picture of Santa and the family, has been around for two years now. Yet augmented reality is one of those concepts that has huge promise, but if it is to really take root, it's going to take another five or so years before it gets critical mass a la Twitter.

    This early effort is going to be very helpful to management and their partners as they see exactly what is and isn't easy to do with augmented reality.

    One great opportunity for the right now is the ability to take a picture of a sign, and use augmented reality to translate that sign into your native language. Years from now, you'll be able to view an entire Hong Kong cityscape and use your phone to navigate it in English, but individual signs are a simple and effective place from which to start.

  2. cvxcv sdbsdd, May 3, 2010 at 11:17 p.m.

    welcome to:

    |?|?|?== ==|?|?|?

    We need your support and trust!!!

    50%off ca,ed hardy t-shirt$15 jeans,coach handbag$33,a
    ir max90,dunk,polo t-shirt$13,,
    lacoste t-shirt $13 air jordan for sale,$35,
    nfl nba jersy for sale

    accept paypal credit card

    Packing: All the products are packed with original boxes and tags also retro cards/ code

    and so on..

    if you like to order anything you like.
    More details, please just browse our website
    Quality is our Dignity; Service is our Lift.
    enjoy yourself. thank you!!


    |?|?|?== ==|?|?|?

Next story loading loading..