- McDonald's and Coca-Cola are the first brands to use Snapchat Scan, an image-recognition feature that lets users of the messaging app scan logos to unlock augmented reality (AR) lenses and content, per an announcement shared with Mobile Marketer.
- Snapchat users in the U.S. who activate Scan on iOS devices can unlock three Coca-Cola lenses when they point their smartphone cameras at the Coca-Cola logo on its packaging. Users also can see three McDonald’s lenses by scanning french fry boxes, food trays and burger wrappers.
- Snapchat Scan is available to any brand that creates a Marker Lens in Lens Studio, the free AR creation tool developed by parent company Snap, and submits the Lens to the Snapchat community. Community-submitted Marker Lens will automatically be enabled with Scan, per the announcement.
Snapchat’s Scan feature can help Coca-Cola and McDonald’s engage with users of the image-messaging by blending their exclusive digital content with the physical world. The feature can help to cut through ad clutter by providing users with a more immersive brand experience, while reaching their target audiences of younger consumers on their smartphones.
More than 90% of people ages 13 to 24 use Snapchat, along with 75% of 13- to 34-year-olds, an audience that aligns well with consumers of fast food. Almost half (45%) of U.S. consumers ages 20 to 39 said they eat fast food on any given day, per a survey by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. However, 49% of Gen Zers believe that drinking soda is not healthy, according to a Mintel survey, giving Coke a more difficult hill to climb.
Coca-Cola and McDonald's have been active this year with their mobile-based campaigns to reach their target audiences. Most recently, Coca-Cola began its holiday-themed promotions with its first large-scale AR experience. By scanning specially marked cans and bottles with the Coca-Cola mobile app, smartphone users could immersive themselves in a computer-generated view of the Coke polar bears' "arctic home." Meanwhile, McDonald's last month ran a sweepstakes that gave Twitter users a chance to win free late-night food delivery from Uber Eats for a year. As part of the campaign, the fast food chain offered free delivery Uber Eats for a limited time.
Snap introduced Scan in April at its first Snap Partner Summit to promote collaborations with creators and developers. Scan adds image-recognition technology to Snap's AR lenses, a key focus of innovation for the company because of their popularity. About 70% of Snapchat's users play with its AR features every day, according to Q1 company metrics. The company this week introduced the first "trailer reaction lens" that let users take video selfies decorated with AR content as they watched a preview for "Top Gun: Maverick," the movie sequel from Paramount Pictures. In October, Jimmy John's debuted its first nationwide Snapchat Lens with a mobile game, giving the sandwich chain a way to engage audiences with gamified brand experience.