- Hearst's Cosmopolitan magazine partnered with Macy's and augmented reality (AR) developer Perfect Corp. on the publication's first print-to-digital beauty experience, according to a press release. The October issue will include a virtual try-on in its beauty coverage that lets readers sample Juicy Couture makeup and buy it directly from Macy's.
- After scanning a QR code in the print magazine, readers are directed to Cosmo's website, where they can activate the AR experience and test out looks by uploading a photo or using a live selfie. Perfect's YouCam Makeup facial mapping technology then overlays virtual makeup onto users. Readers who like the look can click to buy the Juicy Couture products online from Macy's.
- The experience will be featured again in print issues of Cosmo and sister publications Seventeen and Women's Health next year, per the press release.
Cosmopolitan and Macy's are storied brands that have had to adapt to the digital age as consumers shift their reading and shopping habits to online and mobile. The publication's first print-to-mobile experience is part of the magazine's effort to create a seamless shopping experience that lets readers more deeply engage with the magazine and the featured beauty products. Cosmo will likely earn affiliate commission from sales linked to the new experience, though the companies didn't provide details.
This comes as Macy's has worked to revamp its strategy around mobile and digital tech. The retailer plans to offer mobile payments and cashierless checkout in all stores by the 2018 holiday season, according to Adweek, further demonstrating its emphasis on embracing technology that can help to create a more seamless shopping experience for tech-savvy consumers.
Cosmo has continually worked to become more user-friendly for mobile readers, particularly because its core readership consists of tech-savvy millennials between 18 and 34 years old. In December, Cosmo began adding shoppable content into its print pages in collaboration with Snapchat Discover. Readers who scan a Snapcode with their phone are directed to a page that has more product information or enables a direct purchase. The publication, along with Seventeen, this year added Amazon's SmileCodes to many print ads, letting readers scan pages to buy featured products through the e-commerce giant. Cosmo's conversion rate has surged to 12.3% from about 1.5% with the fresh mobile activations, Women's Wear Daily reported.
Meanwhile, AR is becoming an increasingly integral part of the beauty space. Perfect has worked with major cosmetics brands to demonstrate their products through virtual try-ons and other mobile features. Estée Lauder, L'Oréal, Lancôme Paris and Maybelline New York are among the big brands that have partnered with Perfect on its apps that help shoppers discover and sample products before purchasing online. This month, Perfect's YouCam partnered with independent fashion house Flying Solo NYC to create virtual looks to capture audiences around New York Fashion Week.