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A Splash of Spatial Computing (An Advertising Student's Perspective)

January 31, 2020

Kiara Mohammed

At a glance, I was just the average 20-year old uni student from Melbourne, Australia, studying communications and majoring in advertising. I saw myself as a common fish in a pond of many – but looking back now – I’ve really found my ocean.

I’m currently in my third year of advertising partaking in a 4-year course. So far, I’ve been taught the basics in conventional forms of advertising; here’s a client brief, you have an hour to think of a creative concept for either a billboard, radio, or TVC. I won’t lie, I’ve really struggled with this. I would sit there staring at the wall trying to brainstorm ideas, knowing they had all been done before and getting frustrated with myself for not being “creative” enough. On the rare occasion that I thought I had come up with something quite clever, I would be told it’s either been done before or even worse; it’s “straightly 180”.

Being told my ideas were “straightly 180” from a lecturer who has been in the advertising industry for a number of years, absolutely ruined my confidence. It would constantly play in my mind and make me question whether it was just the creative side of advertising that wasn’t for me, or if I should give up pursuing advertising indefinitely.

I’ve decided that instead of letting it get to me, I’d use the negativity to fuel my determination and prove to myself that I can succeed in the field and be better. It made my mind stronger and more determined to take a leap of faith, do something drastic to kick start the rest of my career. The university was offering the chance to partake in an internship program for 8 weeks in Malaysia, and I thought this is it, what do I have to lose? Let’s find out if I have the desire to do what it takes to make it in the advertising industry.

Hellooooo Ministry XR and Spatial Computing!

The inauguration with a tech company made me nervous to think about, I had no experience with spatial technology, and couldn’t even define what it was. But I went in with an open mind and the ambition to learn as much as possible in the short amount of time I am here. The application of my learning at university in the real world, how hard could that be?

2 months later, I’m in absolute awe of what I’ve learnt and have developed a new passion and appreciation for Spatial Computing, which will one day change the way we live, learn, work and play. And the possibilities are endless – especially from an advertising perspective.

The struggles that agencies constantly face in developing new creative ideas that engage the audience and remain memorable can be alleviated with the use of spatial technology. To make an impact on the consumer is an arduous challenge and with this in mind – firstly I’ve focused my efforts on seeking to create advertisements that viewers will remember instead of getting distracted or losing interest. With Spatial Computing – a billboard isn’t just a billboard anymore, it can come to life and begin to watch over you too! Conventional forms of advertising are revolutionized and can now engage the audience in a new way by creating memorable immersive experiences.

Secondly, one of the hardest parts of advertising is identifying the effectiveness of the campaign. Brands often have limited budgets and money can be wasted on billboards, TVCs, or social media ads that don’t generate enough clicks. To check if the advertisement is effective; brands set a time frame for a particular ad and observe if it affects their sales. With Spatial Computing however, we are able to gain a deeper understanding of the consumers and accumulate a broader range of data that is readily available.

Camera effects with Augmented Reality allow for interaction with the brand directly. The audience can use a branded experience like this to tell stories, which align with brand messages to ensure a huge success. Filters like these can go viral with millions of views, and with Facebook, Instagram and TikTok all-supporting face filters, the opportunity for brands to tap into AR has grown dramatically. This results in a larger audience having an immersive experience with a brand that remains memorable.

Spatial Computing at Ministry XR has awaken the creative passion within me. It’s exciting to be a part of the advertising industry and experience the drastic changes in the near future. With more brands using Spatial Computing, we may see a shift from conventional forms of advertising to a world of immersive technology.

Now I know advertising is the right career pathway for me. Thank you to Ministry XR for taking me on and introducing the world of Spatial Computing to me. Although at first it was overwhelming, I’ve accumulated a prodigious amount of information and my imagination has been running wild with potential brand ideas. I can’t wait to see how advertising will evolve over time, and I hope this isn’t the end of my relationship with Ministry XR for they have equipped this little fish with giant fins – to propel from my little pond and into the big blue sea.