Virtual Reality Poised to Revolutionize Marketing As We Know It
In today’s world you can’t spend time online or read a newspaper without viewing a story about virtual reality. Virtual reality is the hot topic of the day and it is poised to revolutionize advertising as we know it.
When an estimated 2.5 million to 5 million VR head-mounted displays will have shipped in the US, virtual reality will already be at such a magnificent scale that it will be a wake-up call for marketers by the middle of 2017. If you add in another 2 million Google Cardboards sent out in the US, the scene changes dramatically and becomes very interesting indeed. Virtual reality is starting to bleed into the fabric of our mainstream every day world.
Virtual Reality is already a strong platform for advertisers who were early adopters of the technology. If virtual reality is not something you have put much thought into, then it’s time to sit up and pay attention. You may be thinking, let all the first come first serve early adopters work out the kinks in the system and you can get in later when it’s all been smoothed out. Besides, it might all just be a fad anyway. You are probably wrong if you do that as virtual reality is set to just keep going up and up.
When it is done properly, virtual reality is a completely immersive and all-consuming experience. So when we then start to think in terms of scale, what is considered “mass” is now a relative term. There are only a certain amount of people that you can get to sit in your new car, tour your cruise ship or to stroll around inside your casino?
If you’re in marketing and you haven’t experienced virtual reality yet, drop everything and go. Don’t wait, you need to do it right now. You need to experience it for yourself so you can begin to visualize and understand the potential VR can have for your business, even if you don’t act.
To begin with just keep it simple. Have Amazon ship you a Google Cardboard for less than 10 bucks and then download the NYT VR app. You should watch two things: “Backwater” by Mini, and “Crown” by Run the Jewels.
“Backwater” will place you in the back seat of a mini and right in the middle of a drama, staring at the dashboard with a 360-view of the interior. It is very reminiscent of BMW’s “Hostage” series featuring Clive Owen in 2002. It is an example of how to leverage VR for advertising. “Crown” gives you the dramatic yet simple feeling of being in the center of a musical narrative –a powerful storytelling device.
Even though watching these two VR videos on your Google Cardboard will give you the most low-end VR experience there exists, it will still blow you away. And then when you experience the Samsung Gear, the Oculus Rift and others you won’t even know what to do with yourself.
There are already ad networks out there for VR ads, believe it or not. If there has ever been a perfect platform for creativity and for pushing the boundaries of reimagining advertising, it is virtual reality.