Publishers look to innovate with augmented reality

IPC and Bauer Media are both launching separate high-profile augmented reality initiatives for their Look and Heat titles in a bid to bolster their magazine experiences amid the continued decline of print circulation in the UK.


IPC’s women’s weekly magazine Look is partnering with LA based Smashbox Cosmetics. Visitors to the magazine’s high street catwalk event The Look Show in October will be able to shop for cosmetics and fashion products from a virtual wall using an augmented reality Blippar app.

Using the app, Look readers will be able to purchase items from a Smashbox Cosmetics branded section using the app in the post-show magazine.

Magazine features, print and online display advertising, social media and homepage takeovers also form part of the partnership.

Meanwhile, Bauer Media’s women’s weekly title Heat has announced plans to release more augmented reality issues after declaring the July trial using the Aurasma platform a success.

The publisher claims the issue generated over 180,000 “interactions” in just four days. The magazine’s total circulation is 290,003.

Nicky Holt, publisher of Heat magazine, says: “Operating in such a competitive environment, we are a multi-platform brand, allowing our readers to access their celebrity news through as many media channels as possible. Aurasma’s platform allows us to take one step closer to achieving this goal by merging the boundaries of our print, online, mobile and broadcast offerings.”

The moves come as women’s weekly titles were one of the steepest drops in circulation during the first half of 2012 according to latest figures from the Audit Bureau of Circulations (ABC).