Panera Bread is changing the digital status quo with its new augmented reality advertisement.
The restaurant chain has introduced an ad unit where customers can click on a link from Facebook, Snapchat or Instagram—or activate their phone camera—and see a Mediterranean Egg White Breakfast Wrap which when clicked on reveals the menu item’s ingredients and nutritional value. This marks Panera Bread’s second dip into augmented reality; the company launched four Snapchat lenses in partnership with South by Southwest earlier this year that let users alter soup orders to create their own versions. Panera Bread hopes the ad experience will provide educational insight into the company’s food, in addition to simple entertainment value. While Panera Bread’s mobile app should serve as a model for other restaurant brands, according to a Gartner L2 report on the topic, the new endeavor does not require an app download to experience the advertisement.
The company hopes to gain consumer insights from the breakfast wrap advertisement and use them to release more menu items in the future. Marketers at Panera Bread hope to keep the venture simplistic in order to track consumer engagement and interactivity—another reason why the brand released it apart from the app.
Many brands have recently undertaken augmented reality projects in an effort to connect with consumers; Panera Bread is the latest food company to do so, and may inspire other brands to follow suit.