The Digimarc Blog

6 Digital Watermarking Use Cases

Digital watermarking technology is a much-talked about innovation, but what is a digital watermark exactly, and what are example use cases?

Digital watermarks can be applied to nearly any object or media. They link product packaging, print, or audio to interactive online content when scanned with an enabled device. These watermarks can be overt or covert, depending on the application, and are read by mobile devices, computers, inspection system cameras, retail scanners, among other systems.

Digital watermark example use cases, include:

  1. Serialized Packaging

    Digital watermarks can contain serialized data. When added to packaging, this allows for greater product traceability across the global supply chain. Consumer brands and food manufacturers can benefit from risk mitigation and real-time insight into product locations such as warehouses or distribution centers.

  2. Brand Protection

    Overt or covert digital watermarks can be added to products, packaging and labels, as well as product images. By using digital watermarks, brands can identify and take action against counterfeit products who are damaging their brand reputation and putting consumer safety at risk.

  3. Commercial Print

    Consumer brands can gain consumer engagement benefits from adding digital watermarking to print pieces. Static print media, such as brochures, posters, signage and at-home and in-store print, can be transformed into dynamic interactive POS (point-of-sale) materials. This creates an omnichannel experience for consumers by seamlessly integrating physical and digital content.

  4. Sustainability

    Digital watermarks on product packaging have the potential to improve sorting at plastic waste facilities and prevent a large percentage of plastics from ending up in landfills. Plastics that can be recycled have higher successful sorting rates. Plastic sorting scanners help brands become more sustainable and reach their corporate social responsibility commitments. The HolyGrail 2.0 plastic recycling project is currently pioneering the use of digital watermarks for a circular economy.

  5. Digital Images & Documents

    Digital image watermarking and document watermarking can help companies identify unauthorized use of digital assets. When digital watermarking is combined with other technologies, it is possible to track and trace sensitive image and document leaks to the source. Digital watermarks allow the brand to keep control over where digital brand assets are being used and stop unwanted distributions.

  6. Audio
    Digital audio watermarks can be integrated directly into audio files to identify and maintain important metadata and distinguish between individual versions of the same audio content. When combined with blockchain technology, it can be a method for identifying music rights holders.

Learn how Digimarc watermarking technology works with Digimarc’s interactive experience lab and discover how to start applying watermarks today.

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