With the National Championship on Monday night, the College Football Playoff is the latest sports property to capitalize on the explosion of augmented reality and its use in sports.
College football fans around Mercedes-Benz Stadium and throughout designated areas of Atlanta will have an opportunity to utilize their smartphone to unlock specific AR experiences.
It’s all part of a partnership between the College Football Playoff and Mandt Media, a developer of virtual reality and augmented reality content offerings.
After fans initially download the CFB Playoff app, they can then enter into the location-based AR environment and activate certain marks and logos, ultimately bringing to life videos and photos of the game, branded experiences with CFB Playoff partners like Dos Equis and Chick-fil-A, promotional merchandise offers and an even a selfie opportunity with the CFB Playoff National Championship trophy.
Fans might also see additional news about Mercedes-Benz Stadium or information about how to better navigate the Championship Campus.
“Location-based augmented reality provides teams and brands the ability to cater their messages, their content offerings, their merchandise opportunity, and their overall engagement strategies to different regions and different communities based on the varying appetites from area to area,” wrote Gordon Whitener, Co-Founder of Mandt Media, to Sports Business Chronicle.
“All of this only increases the ability for teams, brand, etc. to extend their reach, demonstrate technological innovation, and drive their business goals organically.”
Added Gina Lehe, College Football Playoff Senior Director of Communications and Brand Management: “One of our missions at the CFP is to continue to provide college football fans with the best experience. Our augmented reality strategy contributes significantly to that mission.”
According to Lehe, both the College Football Playoff and Mandt Media will be alerting fans of the AR initiative through social media, grassroots marketing and a street team near Mercedes-Benz Stadium.
Whitener of Mandt Media further explained that the highly-coveted 18 to 34 demographic “expects to be presented with unique and compelling experiences across all platforms.” Augmented reality in addition to virtual reality, 360-degree video and other immersive media are all “perfectly positioned” for brands to leverage in order to capture the attention of fans, Whitener said.
“All of this merely scratches the surface of the ways in which AR can and will enhance the overall experience across the sports ecosystem,” he added.
In addition, ahead of the Sugar Bowl on January 1, title sponsor Allstate also provided fans of both Clemson and Alabama a chance to support their teams via augmented reality as well.
Cool AR activation at the @SugarBowlNola, where fans can put on @ClemsonFB or @AlabamaFTBL gloves to show their team support. Not there but assuming you can share images and/or video across social (ht @BePositive). pic.twitter.com/GFldffL2MX
— Mark J. Burns (@markjburns88) December 30, 2017