Since the pandemic lockdown in March, AR engagement has spiked by 19% as consumers turn to social, web and mobile for alternative ways to engage with retailers and brands. This seed round, which sees Haatch Ventures, Ascension Ventures and Super Ventures join as investors, will help Poplar deliver on-demand creation of premium AR and 3D experiences to accommodate the growing demand for branded AR campaigns.
Poplar’s platform automatically assembles teams of certified and trusted AR and 3D creators to build premium immersive digital experiences – such as at-home virtual try-ons, branded face filters, product visualisation and other interactive AR experiences- for retail, fashion & beauty, entertainment, food & drink and gaming brands. The platform has over 1,600 certified 3D/AR content creators who have delivered more than 120 campaigns for the likes of Speedo, Universal Music, L’Oréal, Disney, Jack Daniels, Nestlé and more.
Poplar’s expertise and collaborative community mean it is one of TikTok’s first technology partners for AR Branded effects creation, as well as a Trusted Partner for Google’s 3D display advertising format, Swirl. A 3D Google Swirl ad was recently produced through Poplar’s platform for the promotion of MG Motors’ new compact SUV, which resulted in eight times more engagement than standard rich media format and 4,600 engaged hours.
“With COVID-19 dominating our lives, brands are turning more to digital and social channels to reach consumers in new, immersive ways. Augmented reality is central to that and success will be determined by the quality of the experience. We are growing our platform to bring the very best AR creators together to quickly deliver premium campaigns, without the huge price tag. With 75% of consumers expecting retailers to offer an AR experience and 11 times more likely to make a purchase when AR is available, retail is definitely leading the way in terms of adoption. We expect more industries will follow suit, particularly with the challenges that social isolation is posing to every industry.” – David Ripert, Co-founder and CEO of Poplar