How to Use Augmented Reality to Tell Brands History in the Beverage Industry

Anastasia Morozova
Chief Operating Officer

Most great products have a history. For some, it is a brilliant idea that struck gold; for others, it is years of hard labor that delivered the perfect result.

Histories of some iconic beverages are more fascinating than adventure novels, and sometimes the story behind the bottle is as attractive and exciting as its content.

Beverage brands are quite eager to share their histories, and willing to tell them via public resources, at exhibitions and tasting sessions, in documentaries and TV shows.

However, a brand is always aiming at reaching a wider audience beyond its usual mass media presence.

A perfect place to grab the customers’ attention and engage them with some interesting facts or trivia about the brand history is, naturally, the product packaging.

On the pro side, it is always there, it does not need to be produced at extra cost, it is easily recognizable.

On the con side, it is too small to accommodate everything the brand has to say (and some famous brands dating back a couple of centuries have a lot to say).

However, today, brands no longer need to rely on physical media only. Augmented reality allows creating whole new three-dimensional spaces that can be as bright and animated as you want them to be.

What is great about augmented reality is that it only needs a small marker, like a QR code, to work. You only point your smartphone at the marker – and a whole new universe pops up from it.

Of course, there is always a professionally built AR application behind it, but it is triggered with a simple marker on the packaging.

Brands producing beverages, both alcoholic and non-alcoholic, have been leveraging the advantages of AR packaging for some time already.

For brands, implementing an AR app is a very logical step – beverage brands are very limited in the space they can use to communicate with their customers – they can only work with bottle labels and sometimes boxes. Yet, for augmented reality, this is more than enough!

Let’s see how beverage brands use augmented reality to tell their stories.

augmented reality for the beverage industry

Jack Daniel’s – a journey 150 years back

The famous whiskey brand uses AR to tell the story of its origins.

Scanning the label starts an engaging animation showing the first Jack Daniel’s distillery and describing the process of making the world-known whiskey.

The new experience becomes both an attraction for new customers and a signal to devoted admirers that the brand does not stand still and keeps abreast with modern innovations.

The decision to include augmented reality into their marketing campaign was aimed, among other things, at reaching the audience beyond the traditional advertising media.

According to Jeff Cole, Modern Media Director of Jack Daniel’s, “In today’s world, it’s important for us to reach fans and consumers where they are. That means sharing content that’s unique, interesting and relevant through a variety of digital mediums”.

AR is definitely one of such new mediums that appeals to a totally different group of users – millennials who value technology and mobile-first approach over the traditional TV and printed resources.

19 Crimes Wine – talking bottles

19 Crimes has done something that you have only seen in the Harry Potter movies – talking labels.

The brand is centered around the true stories of British citizens who were sentenced to transportation to Australia for their crimes. Each label bears the face of one of such criminals and features their story.

To promote their wines, 19 Crimes produced an AR app that makes the bottle labels come alive. Once you download the app and look at a bottle through your smartphone camera, the portrait starts talking to you telling their crime and punishment story.

While the brand name and entire marketing style already make 19 Crimes stand out, adding AR makes the customer experience even more exciting.

Shackleton – discovered under ice, served over ice

The story of this whiskey as well as its motto takes us more than one hundred years back, to 1907, when Sir Ernest Shackleton led his second expedition to the Antarctic. To maintain the spirit of his crew, Shackleton ordered 25 crates of whiskey to be loaded on the ship.

One hundred years later, three crates of whiskey were discovered on the site of Shackleton’s camp. The beverage was perfectly preserved and became the source of inspiration for Richard Paterson who recreated the spirit under the name Shackleton in memory of the great polar explorer.

The story of the expedition is told in an AR app specially created for the Shackleton brand. The interactive augmented reality application replays the journey immersing the customer in the experience of an Antarctic expedition.

In this case, Shackleton combines product promotion with customer education in a smart and engaging way making the brand to be remembered and recognized.

Guinness – the Red Tongue Dog of Singapore

The renowned beer brand has earned the name of Red Tongue Dog among the patrons of Singapore. The campaign that Guinness launched together with the city-state of Singapore went under the same name using the dogface as the distinct marker.

The marker on the beer bottles triggered a whole series of AR pieces containing tons of facts and figures about both Guinness beer and Singapore. Users could watch video content, read interesting trivia, play games, pass quizzes and share their experiences in social networks.

The AR app became a great success among Guinness lovers and boosted the sales of the brand.

In addition, AR app caused an increase of Guinness presence in social media, thus contributing to brand awareness.

Crown Royal – the whiskey in your cocktail

When ordering a cocktail in a restaurant, we usually do not ask for a specific brand of a beverage that it includes.

We know that there must be rum in a Mojito and whiskey in a Manhattan, but we rarely wonder what brand of whiskey is used.

Well, that is about to be changed. With an augmented reality app, a cocktail may become a wealth of interesting information about the beverage that is used to prepare it.

For example, the Crown Royal whiskey launched a special AR-based marketing campaign in the restaurants where this brand is one of the cocktail components.

When ordering a cocktail containing Crown Royal, you also receive a marker that you can use to download the app and trigger the AR content.

While enjoying your drink, you can also learn about the Crown Royal distillery watching a 3D story, browse historical images related to the brand and even play a little game.

The AR app content also includes cocktail recipes based on Crown Royal that you can use to amaze guests at your next party.


Augmented reality – a whole new world behind a label

Today, the marketing industry has explored just a tiny bit of the opportunities that augmented reality can bring. AR creates a wealth of new options joining with lots of other technologies – animation, interactive objects, geolocation, face recognition.

As a result, a small marker on the label causes a new three-dimensional space to appear out of thin air. It is rich with colors, sounds, movements, and new information.

As a marketing tool, augmented reality is a brilliant solution, as it lifts the space restrictions that retailers struggle with.

The label size does not matter anymore, as the real action will be in the virtual space on your smartphone screen. In addition to your brand history, you can use AR to announce special events, promote new products, share recipes where your product is used.

Besides, using augmented reality positions the brand as innovative and advanced, thus earning points with the young audience.

We will be glad to share our experience in creating AR packaging for your brand. An AR app will be your channel of communication with your customers that you can use to tell your own unique story.

We will help you build an augmented reality application that your customers are going to love. Contact us for a project discussion, and we will definitely find the perfect solution for you.

Get our fresh tech stories delivered to your inbox!