June 16th, 2012
BAND-AID® Brand Magic Vision
From Bryant Ison, Senior Brand Manager, BAND-AID® Brand
Kids are always the toughest critics. My kids have honed this talent. Over the years, they have pointed out every one of my grey hairs, every extra pound I’ve gained and every wrinkle (that they’ve created.) So, even though the new BAND-AID® Brand Magic Vision app – featuring Disney’s The Muppets – represented the brand perfectly and met our business goals I was worried when I gathered them around the iPad to show them the app for the first time.
I pulled out a box of Muppets bandages and started up the app. As they waited for the app to boot, I felt my 4-yr old start to slide off my lap in boredom as if to say “TV doesn’t take this long to load.” However, once the familiar music started up, he jumped back up on my lap, eyes wide.
What happened next was a mixture of mayhem and delight. The kids went absolutely bananas when they saw Kermit singing right in front of them. The youngest spent at least 3 minutes trying to figure out where Kermit the Frog was on the other side of the iPad. My oldest occupied himself with composing creative “family” photos with The Great Gonzo and Miss Piggy. When the dust settled, I felt like I was super dad with my kids asking, “did you really make that?”
Although I took credit for it with my kids, I didn’t technically make the app. It started with a casual conversation at the Disney sales meeting. Over a drink with one of their creative people, I learned about the technology – Augmented Reality – that overlays a unique and fun experience over reality via your smartphone’s camera. It sounded like science fiction, but I saw it as an extension the “magical moment” that happens when moms pull out a deco bandage. There’s nothing like a BAND-AID® Brand decorated bandage to change a traumatic moment into a fun experience. But this cool technology – it existed, I asked. People had actually seen this, right? Thus began an 18-month odyssey to bring the app to life.
I asked anyone I knew if they had heard of this “augmented reality”. After numerous dead-ends, I was put in touch with Josh Shabtai – creative director at JWT, the brand’s ad agency. He had created a number of apps using this fast-evolving technology and had a vision for how the team could develop an experience for Band-Aid Brand. Together we went to Disney to pitch the idea – imagine if every one of the 4 billion bandages that we produce each year is key to unlock a new experience. That’s more eyeballs than the most successful movie launch! That’s bigger than the biggest DVD.
Inspired by the possibility, we created the app in collaboration with our friends at Disney. I wish I could say it was painless, but charting new territory and navigating the legal waters in two of the largest corporations of the world brought its own challenges. However, through the efforts of countless believers, the team was able to bring the app to launch.
Now when my kids tell their friends what I do, they don’t smirk (as much). They smile as they talk about the coolest app that they’ve ever seen – BAND-AID® Brand Magic Vision.
Are you ready to experience Disney’s The Muppets like never before: in the real world?! With BAND-AID® Brand Magic Vision, all you need is a BAND-AID® Brand Adhesive Bandage featuring The Muppets and your iPhone or iPad to bring Kermit the Frog, Miss Piggy and The Great Gonzo into your reality. If you want to check out the app, you can download it for free and share it with your friends and family.. Try it and let us know what your kids think!