We were asked to create the front cover of Viva Brighton – a leading arts and culture magazine dedicated to the people and businesses of Brighton and Hove – along the theme of, ‘A Nation of Shopkeepers’.
Against a backdrop of media stories about struggling bricks & mortar stores, we wanted to use digital/ mobile technology in a positive way: as a catalyst to generate business for physical stores.
We approached Blippar, an augmented reality app, who granted us a licence allowing us to develop augmented reality content. We used Blippar to create a virtual page of 12 offers redeemable at 12 Brighton & Hove retailers. Viva readers just had to blip the front cover and the Blippar app would take them to the offers. Readers then had to show the offer to the retailers to redeem it. The idea also aligns nicely with Brighton’s status as a digital hub.
We thought hard about the augmented reality content. When someone has bothered to blip, they must be rewarded, either with great visuals or with great offers. We wanted to use the theme to drive business to our local high street, so we chose the latter.
What we delivered
The front cover itself was inspired by character illustration from the 1960s and draws on retro shopfronts including gilt lettering. It’s simple and, we think, striking. Meanwhile, rust and ochre colours give a seasonal, autumn theme.
What the client says
“As a print magazine, we’re always thinking about how print will stay relevant in the future, and the idea that the physical product we’re making could open up a whole new base of information and interaction is really exciting for us. Another key aspect of our company is that we focus on local businesses and local people, so your concept of supporting local retailers through the use of this technology couldn’t be a better fit for Viva.
Bringing the idea to the different retailers showed us that most of the businesses – even those who had never heard of Blippar – were excited by the concept and really open to this sort of idea, and we’re looking forward to speaking to them during and after the trail to find out what the response has been from customers. We’ve had great feedback on the cover, through word of mouth and on social media.” – Rebecca Cunningham, Writer & Acting Art Director, Viva Brighton.