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Mountain Dew, Stuart Weitzman take advantage of Snapchat's new world lenses

With its latest update, Snapchat unveiled forward-facing world lenses, and brands such as Mountain Dew and Stuart Weitzman are already taking advantage of the new feature, using its augmented reality functionality to project branded overlays onto images.

The world lenses allow the brand?s signature photo overlays that are typically used for face filters to be placed over any photo. Brands are using the filters to place branded images over photos in their Snapchat stories.

?While face filters opened the door to lens behavior and provided a fun and interactive tool to augment reality by looking into the mobile mirror, world lenses are interesting as they open the door for the DEW Nation to flex even more creativity with the world around them and showcase even more experiences in unique and immersive ways,? said Stinson Parks, digital brand manager at Mountain Dew.

World lens
Snapchat has long been a difficult nut to crack for marketers. 

The platform has an incredibly large audience, especially among the valuable millennial audience. But tapping into that wealth of young consumers has been difficult as brands struggle to figure out exactly how to target them.

Face filters, a popular feature, have been a good place to start as brands have partnered with the social network for branded face filters, such as the ones created for Chipotle a few months ago.

With the introduction of world lenses, brands and consumers will now be able to apply the same augmented reality functionality to any image and not just a face.

Brands such as Mountain Dew have already started capitalizing on the new feature with augmented Snapchat stories.

?Our DEW fans on social expect the brand to try new platforms and technology, and to experiment right along with them. Just like our fans, we?ll continue exploring new platforms and getting creative with the stories we can tell via these new channels.?

Augmented reality
The new world lens feature also highlights the growing importance of augmented reality both as entertainment for consumers and as a branding tool.  

"We're starting to see the divide narrow between augmented reality and everyday apps and brands can continue to act as peers on these platforms with their fans in this new and enhanced world. Snapchat's World Lenses promote content around a group or situational experience, rather than a selfie or personal moment," said Steve Babcock, chief creative officer at VaynerMedia.

Other brands such as Stuart Weitzman have already begun using world lenses to promote specific products and launch social marketing campaigns.

As world lenses proliferate and Snapchat increasingly makes its platform friendlier to marketers, brands will have to make use of every new tool to tap into the valuable audience on Snapchat.

"VaynerMedia was excited to see Snapchat roll out this new feature because it further enables our clients including Stuart Weitzman to be able to engage with their target consumers in innovative ways,? Mr. Babcock said. ?We leveraged the wintery world lens to feature two of Stuart Weitzman's new boots, the Blizzard and the Furnace, in a Snapchat video that also aesthetically tied to their other marketing objectives."