Jones Soda Co., a craft soda known for its unconventional flavors, has introduced a new series of augmented reality labels featuring the fortune teller character Zoltar reading fortunes in short videos triggered by the Jones Soda app and a phone camera. The series follows last summer’s debut of Jones Soda AR labels showcasing extreme athletes and artists in action.
Hitting store shelves in the U.S. and Canada this month, the new labels were made possible by an agreement with Zoltar brand owner Characters Unlimited and its licensing agency, Firefly Brand Management. The labels will appear on Jones Soda’s top-selling Orange and Cream, Cream Soda, Berry Lemonade, Root Beer and Green Apple flavors, extending the company’s strategy of utilizing AR to provide a unique vehicle for brand storytelling as well as a way of engaging with younger consumers.
The Zoltar labels and other Jones Soda offerings were showcased at Jones Soda’s booth at the recent NACS Show, along with Character Unlimited’s animatronic Zoltar fortune telling machine.
Each Zoltar-themed AR label features an image of the turbaned fortune teller character and a Reel Label icon indicating the bottle’s AR capability. All fortunes are customized to combine Zoltar’s “infinite wisdom” with Jones Soda messaging, delivered in Zoltar’s signature voice and captured in a shareable text-based screenshot replicating fortune cards dispensed by animatronic Zoltar machines.
“Our AR labels are unique in the soda category, a perfect fit for our brand personality and a cornerstone of our content strategy to help attract new consumers in our demographic,” said Mark Murray, president and CEO of Jones Soda. “The Zoltar character is ideally suited to our AR initiative because he is instantly recognizable as an animated character. You can’t look at him without wanting to hear what he has to say about your future, even though you know it’s all in good fun.”
“We have licensed Zoltar across many platforms through our relationship with Firefly Brand Management, but this is the first time that our beloved Zoltar is appearing on soda bottles,” said Olaf Stanton, president and CEO of Characters Unlimited. “It’s a whole new way of bringing Zoltar to life and one of the most creative uses of the character we have seen to date.”