ARCHIVES: This is legacy content from before Marketing Dive acquired Mobile Marketer in early 2017. Some information, such as publication dates, may not have migrated over. Check out the new Marketing Dive site for the latest marketing news.

Covergirl's augmented reality app attempts personalized approach

While Covergirl is the latest in a growing line of beauty marketers embracing augmented reality, the Procter & Gamble brand?s new application features a long questionnaire for a more personalized approach.

Covergirl's new BeautyU app is taking personalized mobile experiences to another level with a comprehensive questionnaire and facial scanning to provide individualized product recommendations and how-tos. The app allows users to try on virtual products before purchasing, and receive tailored content based on interests and facial features. 

"Apps have the potential to drive sales and change how women shop for makeup in the mass market because they can now try before they buy," said Laura Brinker, global communications of Covergirl Cosmetics. "COVERGIRL BeautyU stands out because it not only allows you to try on products, it recommends them to you based on a scan of your facial features and a series of diagnostic questions."

Augmenting mobile experiences
BeautyU users can download the app for a completely tailored Covergirl experience that begins with a scan of their faces. The app taps into the user?s smartphone camera in selfie mode and scans an image of her face, which then automatically determines various facial features such as shape of lips, eyes, face, brows and type of skin tone. 

Participants are then asked a series of questions regarding interests and beauty features, such as skin type and areas of concern, for what it is calling a beauty 'consultation.' Users who would like to start interacting with products and various content immediately can end the questionnaire, but others can continue for more comprehensive questions such as what is their eye color, favorite Covergirl spokeswoman and favorite makeup looks. 

The homepage of the app then provides a few options of content the user might be interested in, such as product recommendations and how-tos specific to her. Exploring the app further, users can try on recommended looks through augmented reality, as well as individual products or create their own makeup look. 

Shoppers can save items for future purchase by clicking the save button, which will congregate the products within the user?s profile page. The profile also features the questionnaire answers of which users can change at any time and facial scanning results. 

Beauty on mobile
Beauty brands have brought augmented reality from an interesting idea to an effective marketing tool on mobile this year by tapping into its ability to drive trial, a strategy which other marketers could benefit from following (see more).

Also, Covergirl similarly made use of Twitter?s conversational ads during the Grammys, prompting fans of singer and actress Zendaya to share a tweet for exclusive information about her look (see more).

"We also designed it in partnership with Girls Who Code," Ms. Brinker said. "The app is available for download now, but we will launch a more comprehensive marketing campaign in the summer."