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BBC Promotes New ‘Doctor Who’ Season With AR Activation

January 13, 2020 Sarah Cavill

photo from bbc

The Doctor is back, and this time she isn’t the only one with fancy technology. In conjunction with the premiere of the new season of Doctor Who, BBC America deployed an augmented reality (AR) activation that let fans interact with a computer-generated TARDIS, the Doctor’s time machine.

The Doctor Who campaign from BBC America is the latest in AR activations from TV brands and streaming services tapping the new technology to engage a larger audience.

Step Into The TARDIS With QR Code Scans

The new season of Doctor Who debuted on January 1st and featured a Subaru-sponsored commercial break during which fans could scan a QR-code with their phones that delivered a “virtual” TARDIS to their living rooms — or wherever they were watching. According to Mobile Marketer, “The AR experience let fans interact with a computer-generated "TARDIS" [and] didn't require viewers to download a separate app to activate the content, making it feel more seamless.”

The BBC And ‘Doctor Who’ Often Appeal To Tech-Savvy Viewers

This latest campaign for Doctor Who isn’t the BBC’s first time using QR codes and AR. The British network has often courted the tech-savvy Doctor Who audience with entertaining digital activations. At the 2009 San Diego Comic-Con, fans could win prize packs by following the clues in the “Doctor Who’s Clues QR Scavenger Hunt.” More recently, Jodie Whittaker, the 13th and latest Doctor, was animated for a VR experience that debuted at the Tribeca Film Festival virtual arcade. 

AR Can Make Multichannel Marketing Campaigns More Engaging

According to the International Data Corp, global spending on AR and VR is forecasted to be $18.8 billion in 2020, a 78.5% year-over-year increase, which likely means even more marketing campaigns will feature the innovative technologies. When used in film and TV campaigns, the combination of tangible, immersive experiences with the seamless technology mobile provides, further reinforces ad campaign messaging — and it’s fun. AR and VR are another way to optimize multichannel campaigns for maximum audience engagement.

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About the Author

Sarah Cavill

With more than 20 years of writing, editing and reporting experience, Sarah Cavill brings to Digital Media Solutions (DMS) a fine-tuned and diverse set of skills. Her work has been featured in notable publications including The Daily Muse, CBS Local, Techlicious and Glamour magazine. Sarah has a passion for current events and the deep-dive research that goes into the content development and brand identity of DMS Insights. In her role as Senior Marketing Communications Writer, Sarah contributes to the pitching, researching and writing of multiple stories published each week surrounding digital and performance marketing innovations in pop culture, news, social media, branding and advertising.

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