Oreo is launching its first social game for mobile devices—an augmented reality scavenger hunt called “The Great Oreo Cookie Quest.” Oreo joins a growing list of brands using AR scavenger hunts to actively engage consumers as the technology becomes more accessible.
“The Great Oreo Cookie Quest” offers daily clues such as “What puts hands on your wrist?” The app uses object-recognition technology to determine whether users are pointing their cameras at the correct object—in this case, a wristwatch. Pointing the app at the correct object will reveal an AR Oreo cookie and earn points depending on how difficult the clue is.
Cookies are saved in a gallery and points are displayed on a leaderboard that can be compared to friends on Facebook and Twitter. Scanning a real Oreo cookie enters the user into a sweepstake to win prizes such as Pixel phone or an Oreo-branded Bluetooth speaker. Users can also win travel prizes such as a trip to Africa or Google headquarters in California.
Oreo’s AR scavenger hunt is a continuation of the brand’s ongoing partnership with Google, which began last year (Android’s new 8.0 operating system is called Oreo). The partnership is embodied in a superhero character unveiled during the solar eclipse.
Google also partnered with the cookie brand for its Oreo Dunk Challenge campaign last February. Fans were invited to scan an Oreo with their mobile device. The app converted the cookie into a digital version, where it was launched into the stratosphere by Google Earth before landing in a glass of milk somewhere in the world.
Brands have taken advantage of AR scavenger hunts for several years, especially on Snapchat. As AR technology continues to advance and becomes less expensive to develop, this trend is likely to continue.
Niantic’s Pokemon GO set the bar high for user engagement in 2016 for AR mobile gaming. Just as millions got outside to collect virtual Pokemon, branded AR scavenger hunts invite fans to actively participate in a marketing campaign.
In honor of Force Friday II—Disney’s massive unveiling of Star Wars merchandise ahead of the 2017 holidays—a long list of brands threw a global augmented reality event at 20,000 participating retail locations. Through the official Star Wars app, AR characters and creatures could be seen and photographed around stores, with new characters unlocked each day of the weekend.
Before The Mummy hit theaters, Universal Studios partnered with Cinemark Theaters to create an AR scavenger hunt to win prizes.
Digi-Capital forecasts that AR (mobile AR, smartglasses) could approach three and a half billion installed base and $85 billion to $90 billion revenue within five years. Consumers spent $3.4 billion last year on augmented, mixed and virtual reality in 2017, according to SuperData Research.