Meeting with Alex Gibson about Augmented Reality Marketing Conference Dublin

ar-marketing-conferenceThe inaugural Augmented Reality Marketing Conference will take place in the iconic Guinness Storehouse brewery in Dublin on Tuesday April 15th, and features lots of international AR experts sharing their insights on how AR can help brands better connect with their audience. We met Alex Gibson to know more about this event.

Hello Alex, could you present yourself briefly and explain us what is ?

I’m an academic who lectures in marketing at Dublin Institute of Technology, Ireland and have had a fascination with how marketers interact with technology. I also present a weekly radio show on local radio dedicated to marketing topics – The Persuaders. This is a most useful way to keep abreast of key trends and interact with top international marketers. A recent Augmented Reality project I worked on allowed me to see the potential for the technology in a tourism context. is a portal site which is dedicated to act as a source of views and news on how AR is being adoped as part of marketing strategy. I am particularly keen to find real-world case-studies that show how AR can add real value to a company’s bottom-line,

You organise in April the first “Augmented Reality Marketing Conference” in Dublin. What is the main objective of this meeting?

alexgibsonThe main objective of this conference is to demystify augmented reality for a marketing professionals audience. For too long AR has been seen as somewhat gimmicky and short-term in its impact; this conference will look at how the technology will evolve in the very near future. The conference is one day in duration and is designed to prepare creatives, agencies, publishers and brands for the impending launch of Google Glass, connected wearables, and new AR platforms that will pay massive dividends to those prepared to capitalize instead of just react.

All attendees will get one-on-one time with AR experts for personalized consultations and hands on with the latest wearable technology including Google Glass.  Spend one day with us and you’ll know why AR is no longer just about 3D pop-ups…but the 8th mass medium that will forever change how people look at the world

And could you give us topics of some keynotes ?

There are over a dozen great keynote speakers coming to Dublin from a number of countries- Netherlands, UK, France, USA and Ireland. Among the highlights will be Google Glass and wearable technology visionary Dave Lorenzini who will discuss how to capture new business with entertaining, personalized, & tracked campaigns that deliver Augmented Results. We will also be joined by Jess Butcher, founder of Blippar who will share the new app they have developed for Google Glass, which promises to propel AR on this platform. Another keynote speaker I am really looking forward to hearing is Jeff Coghlan of Matmi UK who will talk about their work in the leisure sector with Alton Towers, the Smiler app and Merlin fun parks, as well as case studies from their client list which includes BBC, Philips, The AA, BP, Argos, Asda, Comic Relief, Glaxo SmithKline, Iron Maiden, ITV, Jim Beam, Lloyds TSB, Lily Allen, MAC Cosmetics, and MARS, among others.

Globaly, how do you see AR today in marketing ? Is it a “mature” technology or always in the « trough of disillusionment » (as Gartner say)?

That’s a good question; as academics we are often acutely aware of the Hype Cycle context of technological adoption. While it’s never an exact science, my instinct tells me that AR has already passed the trough of disillusionment. Now we’re begining to see marketers who dabbled in the technology a few years ago as a form of experimentation coming back to develop more long-term uses of AR to meet clear marketing goals, whether those be customer acquisition or retention.

For you, How  AR marketing should evolved during five next years ?

Key drivers in the future are of course wearable technology and mobile phone evolutions. For the former, the devlopment by Blippar of a functioning app for Google Glass is an indicator of things to come. As Smartphone adoption rates accelerate, this will undoubtedly provide a further impetus for AR adoption. But I think perhaps the most crucial evolution has to be the emergence of an industry standard platform, perhaps with easly integration on web browsers, rather than via multiple apps which is certainly a barrier to customer choice. It’s possible too that the term Augmented Reality may get supplanted by a more consumer friendly term ( I hope not too soon after investing in developing a conference called Augmented Reality Marketing Conference! )

Thanks Alex, a last word ?

As the chair I’m certainly open to welcome suggestions from the Augmented Reality Professionals group that I should put to the participants, so please put some in the comment section, and hopefully I will see some of you in Dublin!


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Grégory MAUBON est consultant indépendant en réalité augmentée (animateur et conférencier) depuis 2008, où il a créé et fondé en 2010 RA'pro (l'association francophone de promotion de la réalité augmentée). Il a aidé de nombreuses entreprises (dans plusieurs domaines) à définir précisément leurs besoins en réalité augmentée et les a accompagnées dans la mise en œuvre.

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