How Virtual Reality could become a marketing opportunity
Everyone knows that technological innovations are continuously having a huge impact on the digital marketing, and virtual reality (VR) is surely one of the most intriguing tool of the last years.
Up to now real use cases have been limited to the videogame and amusement world, even if this type of tech is on the market from a quite long time.
Virtual Reality should actually offer more and more, especially in the marketing field.
Today there are more or less 90 billions of VR users in the world, and someone affirms that the number will increase up to 171 billions in 2018, coming almost to a doubling. Even if virtual reality seems to be an expencive technology, inacessible and suitable just for tech fans, statistics clearly reveal that the VR question is strongly growing up, because it is not a must to buy expensive devices for having it at home.
Technological leaders such as Google, Samsung, HTC, Sony and Facebook with Oculus, are
always introducing new solutions, reducing VR viewers ’ prices on the market. But there is even more: from the moment Google introduced the cardboard viewers, VR experience became available for any smartphone ’ s owner, due also to his very affordable cost. Cardboard is in fact a simple cardboard piece, having specific lens, able to turn the smartphone into a virtual reality viewer. It is available on the market at a cost ranging from 5 to 20 euros.
This means that spending a huge amount of money to live virtual reality experiences is not at all not necessary.
If you professionally deal with marketing, VR should affect you. Here is the reason why.
Nowadays consumers’ tastes and needs are becoming more and more sofisticated, particulary those of millenials. The attention they are willing to give is such limited, that it is difficult to keep them engaged and satisfy them. Brands and companies cannot afford to ignore the youth market, and must be able and able to differentiate themselves to attract the attention of millennials. For this main reason we need a change in the way we promote and communicate a product, which must be able to generate unforgettable emotions, and to let positive impressions, capable of last a long time.
As a relatively new technology, VR is still able to create a totally unique experience for the majority of people, generating that “wow ” effect, the one that most consumers search so much. It is a sort of technology that brands use more and more for marketing purposes, and some of them had been really good at it. McDonald ’ s, Coca-Cola, Marriott, MSI, Tom ’ s, TopShop and Volvo (just to mention some of them) have already used Virtual Reality to engage a huger public than the one they have, and to interact with it in a new and involving
How to use virtual reality for marketing purpose? Here it is.
Analyse, analyse, analyse
At this point we know it, virtual reality potentiality are limitless, and the growth trend announces a well – known situation in the social networks world: “ if everyone is able to make it, I can make it too ” . These are those cases in which never mind if its use does not match with the company ’ s strategies.
But the point is that virtual reality should not be seen as a trend to follow, if it has to be a real useful tool for companies. That is the reason why it is fundamental to understand if and in which way this type of technology could be useful in business dynamics, and which is the income it could generate.
Which are the goals the company wants to reach? Which results do you want to obtain through the use of virtual reality? How can we measure them? How could it be efficient for company ’ s processes? In which way should it take more value?
Virtual Reality could be a real powerful tool, if used in the right way.
Create 360 videos
Up to now 360 videos are the easiest way to make use of VR technology for a company.
In fact any firm could step down from flat pictures and videos to 360 videos ’ realisation, due also to smartphone’ affordability. To live them in an immersive way nowadays, all it takes is a cardboard.
Think about efficient contents: from storytelling to storyliving
For those who realise contents, virtual reality opportunities are limitless: from educational videos to virtual journeys to even product demonstrations. Obviously, this requires a new way of thinking. With VR spectators become the protagonists of the story and they can look everywhere, in 360 degree. As the most important Google VR director Jessica Brillhart, affirms, the story is everywhere. This makes virtual reality and 360 videos very efficient tools to generate empathy. When the observator feels itself part of the scene, it also transposes messages in a stronger way, remembering the experience for a longer period of time. The content must be able to take advantage of the medium, it has to move the person somewhere else and immerse it in a brave new world.
Search the right platform
Once the content is ready, the main problem is related to the question “ how could we show it to people? ” VR videos should be a right way to stand out and look innovative among competitors.
Industries from automotive to fashion are now helping people taking better decisions, involving them in an interactive and amazing journey, thanks to the use of an application that allows the personification of their own experience.
Anyway, the content should be charged also on a web player as Youtube, able to manage the VR and linked to the company’s digital strategies.
Spread your own experience
Once you developed the content and chose the platform you will use to support it, the last step is the one of showing it to people. The first limit, which curbs the spread of VR contents up to now, is the missing of a VR viewer in the houses. Including the distribution of a branded cardboard in your strategy, people will remind you. This last one could be given as a gadget, or be included in the packaging of the various products (and much else). A strong advice is the one of associating an adequate communication campaign to this gadget: strategies we can apply to virtual reality are limitless, but they always depend on your goals.
To win the jackpot with virtual reality and make it useful for your marketing campaign, you have to be among the first adopting it. This technology could easily become mainstream, it actually has the potentiality. When it will happen, it is clear that your intent to offer a unique, involving and impacting experience will decrease, as the ones of leaving a last long experience on your consumers and of having the opportunity to promote your product in a way that surely will not leave your clients indifferent.