So how many ducks have you tapped? Cadbury’s foray into ‘augmented reality’ through smartphone app Blippar is nearly as addictive as its chocolate.
If you missed last month’s copy of The Grocer, in which the editorial team tested the app that ‘brings brands to life’ Blippar has tied up with Cadbury to launch what is called an ‘augmented reality’ game, in which you download the app onto your smartphone, point the phone’s camera at a Cadbury countline bar and ducks appear to emerge from the packaging. You then play the game by tapping the ducks.
It’s a huge step in consumer engagement. And, given that one in three people in the UK own a smartphone, as Kraft Foods head of digital Sonia Carter says: “The potential market for initiatives like this is huge.” With research company research2guidance estimating there will be nearly 1.2 million apps available in Apple App Store and Android Market by December this year, there is no sign that interest in apps is waning. But it has taken a while for the world of HR to catch up.
It’s another chocolate bar manufacturer (among other products) that has pushed the boundaries here. In May, Nestlé launched an iPhone app to position it as an employer of choice and help applicants search for jobs. By downloading the app, candidates can see videos of employees and be notified of roles that fit their criteria. At the launch, Nestlé UK & Ireland head of recruitment Amanda Jailer said: “Over the next few years, it is expected that the majority of job searches will be done by mobile devices. The Nestlé recruitment team has taken an important milestone in its social media strategy.”
Nestlé should be onto a winner. Online recruitment site Jobsite experienced a 390% increase in traffic via mobile in the 12 months to April last year and it predicts cloud computing will make mobile more powerful than desktop. HR directors, however, have told me they are reluctant to move into mobile, as handling the volume of applications they receive is hard enough. Given this, Nestlé has to be congratulated for making the move. But perhaps this is the thinking behind the major drawback of this app you cannot actually apply for the job.
Now, there is much to be gained by understanding the culture, values and people who work at a company something the Nestlé app demonstrates. It is also great to be able to engage with the recruitment team. But to have to return to your desktop to apply for the job thwarts the whole point of mobile.
After all, Cadbury wouldn’t have many people blitzing its ducks if they had to return to a desktop computer for the app to work.