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AR Instagram Filters For The Music Industry

AR social filters brings bands and musicians straight into the user’s home. Relying on technology and social media, the music industry is able to reach audiences much faster than ever before.

It cannot be denied that music is one of the most accessible forms of entertainment these days. Almost all people, of all ages, all around the world listen to music. Except maybe those really weird ones. Apparently they do actually exist but for the sake of this post lets pretend they don’t. So eventhough people’s love for music hasn’t changed the way in which music is consumed and the way that it is now promoted has dramatically shifted. Especially in relation to the younger demographics. In the past, most musicians relied on TV or radio, while now, it is all about social clout and how many streams you get.

Many of you at this stage are probably aware aware that the biggest revenue generator for musicians is actually their live gigs and their merch. So in order to reach those numbers and to build enough of a fan base to drive event ticket sales it is super important to get the marketing dialed in. Music is a creative endeavour, and was once at the forefront of technology in some capacity or another. And as such it seems only fitting that some of the promotional tools used in a musicians marketing campaign would involve some creative uses of new technology to captivate the hearts and souls of their audiences. One of the hottest music marketing trends right now is no doubt the social AR filter, as they are a great way of leveraging user generated content featuring your music. At the end of the day, musicians once needed to be heard all the time on the radio for people to perceive them as cool, where as now the younger audiences have shifted to Instagram stories instead. If you can take over people’s stories on social, then you have a much better chance of driving the required attention to get to the top.

Despite the fact that social media and AR Instagram filters are probably considered one of the most engaging and interactive forms of media on social and are notorious for reaching vast numbers of users, it is also important for musicians or bands to take into consideration the average age of their audience. It is probably no surprise to you that the best target audience for an AR filter campaign is Gen Z closely followed by Millenials. If your audience falls strongly into either of these two categories then social AR filters are definitly something that you should consider for your next release.

How They’re Using AR Instagram Filters For The Music Industry

Whether musicians want to promote their album launch, reach a new audience, reignite the love of an old classic or simply engage fans in a new interactive way, AR filters are a powerful and creative tool for achieving this. Below are some different ways of using AR Instagram filters for the music industry.

1. Bring Album Cover Art To Life

Below is an excellent example of a piece of cover art being brought to life through the use of an AR social filter. Here we see Kanye Wests Graduation album in 3D being tracked and positioned. Using this AR filter you can nown place Kanye West’s Graduation album cover anywhere you want!

AR Instagram Filters For The Music Industry

2. Creating music experiences that transport users into the music video

UK musician Kylie Minogue launched an AR Filter on her Instagram called ‘Disco Spirit’. Although the way this filter works is slightly different as it features Kylie instead of the user, it still creates a fantastic music based experience and it’s easy to see how this could be adapted to feature the user. It was taken from a performance from her latest album. It blends motion capture and virtual effects using AR Spark AR tools.

3. Promoting an album launch

This AR filter wasn’t created for an album launch perse, and by perse, I mean not at all. It was created for the 40th anniversary of the iconic AC/DC song Highway to hell. This AR filter concept was based on the design of the album so as such it feels like a suitable example here. The filter generates a fire effect and tracks devil horns onto the users so they can get their rock on.

4. Gamified, Shareable Experiences

The former One Direction boy band member, Zayn Malik released a super cool AR game filter for one of his musical releases. This AR game is very easy to play, perhaps a little too easy but it’s still fun and highly shareable nonetheless. And as you can imagine the background music was his latest track. Needless to say, taking an interactive game filter that encourages shares and pairing it with a song release is a sure fired way of getting it some decent attention on the gram. The Instagram that is.

Similarly, not to be upstaged, another former member of One Direction, Liam Payne also created an AR gaming filter. The background sound of this game was also his latest music release, a track called ‘Stack It Up’. Its a fun game with some retro 90 vibes so it was no doubt a success. This filter was actually nominated for a Drum Digital Award. Apparantly they are big fans of Liam. Either that or the creator responsible understands the additional value of generating some earned media from these AR activations.

Artists Leveraging AR Filters To Generate Merch Sales

As we mentioned before, merch is king, well maybe the gig is king but the merch has to be a queen or at least a jack when it comes to generating revenue for musicians and artists. When listeners become fans and then fanatics they tend to get pretty into buying just about anything artists have to offer them. However just like the release of any product, it really all comes down to how much attention you can generate among the target audience. And as we have highlighted before, AR filters can be an excellent tool for garnering some additional attention.


1. Nipsey Hussle

Nipsey Hussle used AR Filters as a part of his promotional strategy. Most of you might already know that Nipsey Hussle owns a clothing brand called marathon. In order to boost sales and get more market share, Nipsey utilised the power of AR filters. He created an AR filter that could detect a logo and then place a graphic onto the tshirt virtually. This AR filter generated a lot of revenue for Nipsey. Sold 1000 units in less than 24 hours netting a net profit of $100,000.

2. Nicky Minaj

You may have heard of Nicky Minaj? Maybe? Well Nicky also dropped an AR filter with the sole purpose of promoting her necklace and accessories from her latest album “Queen”. This AR filter allows the user to try on the products before purchasing them. The necklace was sold out within 24 hours of launch. Well done Ms Minaj!

Future Of Augmented Reality in The Music Industry

As the most accessible form of immersive technology, Augmented Reality has now become one of the easiest ways for artists to impress their fans. Moreover, due to the global pandemic that is covid-19. All musicians and promoters have been forced to cancel all their tour dates. Thus, artists and promoters need to find new ways to connect with their audiences. And maybe also extract a bit more cash. Based solely on where everything is heading and some of the innovations that we have seen in the last 2 years it seems AR is going to become even more embeded in the ways that musicians reach their fans. Several musicians such as The Weeknd, Travis Scot and John Legend have all had some sort of augmented / mixed reality concert and we are sure that this trend will only continue to grow as the technology becomes more cost effective to distribute and simple to use for the end user.

AR Instagram Filters For The Music Industry

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