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Making Calendars Interactive with Stockmans and Randstad

Chris Cameron November 30, 2012

Stockmans Kalenders, a Belgian calendar printer, has worked together Dutch human resources consulting firm Randstad to create a truly unique calendar for 2013.

Randstad’s 2013 calendar has been enhanced with Layar’s interactive print, allowing users to access quick links, watch videos and jump to content on the Randstad website instantaneously by scanning the calendar with their mobile device. It’s a unique use of interactive print and features some really beautiful buttons and enhancements, as you can see in the video above.

We caught up with Stockmans Managing Director Bruno Devos to chat about how Stockmans is using Layar to create unique, interactive calendars.

“As a calendar company and being part of an innovative printing group we were looking for interactive content for an ‘old’ product: our calendars,” says Devos. “We want customers to highlight actual and interactive communication via our calendar projects. We also use print as a communication tool to go a step further via print-to-web.”

“The Group De Bie – Stockmans, located in Duffel, Belgium, launched just 10 days ago ‘Proppolis,’ a bridge for communication agencies to make print interactive,” says Devos. “In January I started a screening project to use AR in our printed products. After this analysis we decided to go for Layar as our AR engine.” 

According to Devos, the decision to use Layar was based on several different criteria, including cost, user friendliness, front- and back-end stability, community, prior use cases, learning curve, easy-to-use result analysis, availability on different platforms, and more. As for using the Creator, Devos says his team had a very positive experience.

“Our people in design were very happy with the Layar Creator,” he said.


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ANWB’s Kampioen Brings Interactive Print to 5.3M Readers

Chris Cameron November 28, 2012

Europe’s 4th largest magazine has gone interactive with Layar. Kampioen, the 127-year-old magazine of ANWB, the Royal Dutch Touring Club (think AAA but in the Netherlands), is bringing the digital engagement and excitement of interactive print to its 3.5 million subscribers and 5.3 million readers.

The magazine, whose name means “Champion” in Dutch, has been publishing 10 times a year for over a century and boasts one of the biggest magazine circulations in all of Europe. It’s 3.5 million subscribers is equal to that of Top 10 magazines in the United States. In the latest issue, readers can explore the magazine digitally by scanning the pages with the Layar app.


“Layar provides us with new posibilities to strengthen the cosy feeling that Kampioen traditionally generates for its readers,” said Bert Gorissen, Editor in Chief of Kampioen. “From the beginning, the Layar team has assisted us in making our magazine interactive. It is very refreshing to work together so closely with clear goals and a lot of enthusiasm.”

Readers can see the cover come to life with an augmented video interview with Dutch singer and actor Erik van Muiswinkel, and explore worldly travel options through extra content sprinkled into the pages. 

A video tour takes readers to exotic South African locations, links bring them to deals on European cruises, and much more, including a chance to win one of 5 gift packages worth €79. While browsing advertisements, including one for the Nokia Lumia 800 from Vodafone, readers can quickly tap a button to instantaneously add items to their online shopping cart.

Check out more photos of the magazine below.



Notable in this magazine is ANWB’s masterful use of calls-to-action in the print to its digital campaign. On any page with interactive content, an intuitively placed mobile phone icon appears with instructions for what to scan (see example below).

Also, each call-to-action directs readers back to a formal set of instructions on page 7 of the magazine. This is important for any reader that misses the instructions page prior to seeing the call-to-action.


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Layar Goes Down Under with Aussie Real Estate Agency

Chris Cameron November 23, 2012

This week we stumbled onto this amazing demo video from Australia’s 4one4 Real Estate that the agency produced to promote its new interactive print campaign. It’s a great video of not only the agency’s own campaign, but also of the Layar app, how to download it and how to use it with interactive print.

We caught up with 4one4 Marketing Manager Patrick Berry to talk about the agency’s use of Layar with its print materials.

“We had been using QR codes for some time and always felt that they just looked too messy on our graphic artwork, so we set out to see what else was in the market place and through social media we came across Layar,” said Berry when asked what inspired 4one4 to use Layar.

According to Berry, 4one4 looked into using augmented reality, but didn’t get started until the Layar Creator was introduced. “About six months later I received a email from Layar explaining the Creator product and was quite excited to jump online and try it out,” said Berry.

“We had been using videos to promote properties for sale, however, there was never an easy way to allow a user to move from print media to our property videos,” he added. “When we discovered Layar we were excited because we knew we could use this technology on our print advertising and photo sign boards.”

When asked to describe using the Creator, Berry answered with just three words: “Quick, simple and easy.”


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Nissan’s Interactive Print Campaign Wins Top Advertising Award

Chris Cameron November 21, 2012

Click here to see Nissan and OMD’s promo video for the campaign.

Over the summer we told you about how automaker Nissan was taking over newspapers in Canada with a massive interactive print campaign. Now, a few months later, we are proud to share that with the help of Layar’s technology, Nissan’s campaign has been awarded Canada’s top advertising award - Best of Show at the Media Innovation Awards.

Check out this video the company used to promote its campaign “Nissan Altima - Innovation that Excites.” Readers of Canada’s top newspapers could scan pull page cover wrap ads to view videos about the car and instantly schedule test drives.

The interactive print campaign, built in a partnership with OMD, PostMedia and TBWA, was a huge success for Nissan. Over 8 million readers viewed the campaign in one day, which lead to more than 6,500 page views at a 42% click-through rate. The most impressive stat? Test drives for the Nissan Altima increased by 65% as a result of the Interactive Print campaign.

“More and more we see brands and publishers using this technology to infuse their print products with the power of the Internet,” said Layar CEO Quintin Schevernels, who says Nissan’s campaign is a testament to the effectiveness of interactive print. “By engaging readers through their smartphones, Nissan’s print advertisements produced substantial results for their business.”

Layar’s interactive print technology helped Nissan came away the big winners last week at the Canadian Media Innovation Awards in Toronto, winning not only Best in Show, but three other awards as well.

Nissan says it plans to keep using Layar in the future, including on another big project coming soon, so stay tuned!


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Get Free Creator Pages with Layar Sponsored Pages

Chris Cameron November 16, 2012

Introducing our first Sponsored Project: Inside Confucius

If you’ve followed Layar over the years then you know that we have a long record of promoting artistic and educational content on our platform. Dozens of layers have been published over the years for various purposes, including museum exhibitions and the products of augmented reality design classes.

We’re big supporters of using technology - especially augmented reality - to forge new frontiers for improving education, culture and society, but not everyone has the resources to bring great ideas to life. We want to make sure that ideas conceived around augmented reality and interactive print have a chance to become a reality, so today we’re introducing Layar Sponsored Pages.

Layar Sponsored Pages makes it easy for artists, students, teachers, charities and other groups and individuals to apply for free Layar Creator pages. To get things started, we’re also introducing our first sponsored project: Inside Confucius from Western iMedia at Western Kentucky University’s School of Journalism and Broadcasting.

Western iMedia has launched a Kickstarter project to help fund the group’s goal of creating an innovative editorial study of the Confucius Institute, a worldwide cultural program run by the Chinese government. Layar has sponsored the project with not only free Layar Creator pages, but also with $2,000 in rewards for Kickstarter donors.

Kerry Northrup, Director of Western iMedia, has been interested in using augmented reality as a journalistic tool, and had students test and research the best platform.


“They researched and tested out a few augmented reality service providers and none seemed to work as they had hoped. Kerry came across some of Layar’s work this past summer and it seemed bullet proof to him,” says Western iMedia’s Mckenzi Loid. “It was easy to use and it seemed to be a perfect fit for our project.”

The group then produced a trial project to see how the use of augmented reality might change their content and workflow. “Through that trial project, we were certain that Layar was a great provider to work with as journalists and we could be confident using it for our Confucius Institute project,” says Loid.

The Western iMedia project is indeed a unique one, touching on both the educational and cultural aspects of what we look for in Layar Sponsored Pages applicants. If you want to apply for free Layar Creator pages, visit the Layar Sponsored Pages information page and fill out the application form!


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