What if you could digitally sculpt a 3D object and share it on Facebook, play with it in virtual reality (VR) or insert it into your world with augmented reality (AR)? Well, Facebook, the world’s most widely-used social network is bringing VR and AR together with 3D posts straight to your screen. Audiences can interact with and explore visual details of 3D images, objects and videos directly in their News Feeds.
Facebook has recently adopted new content formats like 360 photos, live videos and GIFs in an effort to remain forward-thinking, but it was at the Facebook F8 Conference in May 2018 that Facebook 3D posts were first announced. As yet they’re only available for organic posting, but it’s an exciting step for the use of 3D in advertising.
How does it work?
Both brands and Facebook users can drag and drop 3D objects and images into their News Feeds by uploading an industry standard glTF 2.0 image (the JPEG of 3D) from a 3D camera or a 3D app. This allows for textures, lighting and realistic rendering of rough or shiny objects. Users can also take 3D posts and bring them into Facebook Spaces, its social VR hangout rooms. For example, you could make a metallic personalised chess piece in a 3D modelling app, share it to your News Feed and then bring it into Facebook Spaces to play with. Brands like LEGO, Jurassic World and Wayfair are already experimenting with 3D posts that you can play with!
Why use Facebook 3D posts?
There are huge opportunities for Facebook if it can make this work. It could leave other social networks in the dust by offering the most futuristic way to share, and it provides a real opportunity for your brand to get noticed on social.
In a 2016 study by the Content Marketing Institute, 81 per cent of respondents advise that interactive content grabs their attention more effectively than static content. Marketers and advertisers would surely love to let users try AR products rather than looking at them in a photo, and as the Facebook algorithm already prioritises content that encourages active and meaningful interaction among users, passive scrolling could be a thing of the past.
Some retail brands are already paving the way for AR commerce and are even allowing users to add 3D images into their posts, creating opportunities for users to create their own content which will surely get users engaged with their brand.
3 Brands already utilising Facebook 3D Posts
- Wayfair shows you how a product fits into your space
Wayfair uses Facebook 3D posts to ‘bring furniture to life’. The online homewares retailer allows users to zoom in and out and ‘walk around’ a home decor piece in a virtual room. This use of a 3D post fulfils the step in the buying journey where a customer is deciding how a product will fit into their life. Their use of Facebook 3D posts is a great opportunity for online retailers who don’t have brick-and-mortar stores. As e-commerce continues to grow, digital brands should see how they can bring their customers closer to their products and fill a gap in the online customer buying journey.
- Jurassic World makes popular characters shareable
Jurassic World has combined 3D posting with AR so that fans can easily create user-generated content (UGC). AR is when content is ‘placed into’ the real world using a device like a camera on your smartphone. Jurassic World has used 3D posts to get up close and personal with one of Hollywood’s most famous raptors named Blue. They allow users to add 3D Blue into their own videos and images through Facebook camera. Blue can be spun around, made to roar and even makes sound.
UGC is recognised as 35 per cent more memorable than other media and 50 per cent more trusted by audiences. When a user shared UGC on their feed, brands are then reaching and increasing brand awareness to a specific audience. In essence people who include Blue in their own posts are essentially promoting the film to their contacts for free. Getting audiences to create UGC with their favourite characters is relatively easy and can have a large benefit for your brand’s Facebook presence.
- Coach brings audiences behind the scenes
Coach has used Facebook 3D posts to present a behind-the-scenes look into Fashion Week with an immersive 360-degree video experience. Showing the inner-workings of your brand in detail can show the relatable human side to your brand and bring people closer to your brand. A 3D post can take your behind-the-scenes content to the next level with its immersive VR format. It provides potential customers with an enjoyable experience they wouldn’t get through a purely static photo gallery on Facebook.
Brands can use this type of 3D video for other interactive settings like an event, showroom tour or product reveal, and is especially valuable for connecting with customers who may not be able to attend these events in person.
Feel free to get in touch if you would like some more information on Facebook 3D Posts and what these could do for your business.
3D Posts, augmented reality, Facebook, virtual reality