How Virtual Reality Is Re-Shaping The Marketing Landscape
This is a guest post – Raul Harman is a B.Sc. in Innovative entrepreneurship and his main areas of interest is digital marketing for enterprises and small businesses. He is also a regular contributor on technivorz.com. Follow him on Twitter at @
If we chose one notion to represent the modern world, it would have to be hyper-connectivity.
Whenever a new device, or even a new feature emerges, all things business-related rush in to try and use it for their own benefit.
Virtual reality (VR) will be no exception to this general rule. There have been some major disruptions in the world of marketing, but all of them are insignificant when compared to the disruption that virtual reality could cause.
With that in mind, here are some ways in which VR is reshaping the landscape of marketing as we know it.
2016 is a Big Year for VR
Even though it was a theme of much interest in the past, 2016 is going to be the biggest year yet for VR.
The reason behind this is quite simple – later this year, two long anticipated VR devices are about to make their appearance.
I am talking about the HTC Vive and Oculus Rift.
Even though enthusiasm regarding the Oculus Rift suffered a major blow after its price was announced (the device will cost around $600 while preliminary estimates suggested no more than $350), people’s interest is still very much alive. As for Vive, we are still awaiting some additional information.
The Next Big Advertising Medium
Forbes announced that “advertisers and marketers are already salivating over the possibilities of reaching people while they are immersed in their headset”.
Virtual reality will allow advertisers to immerse passive audiences in an active experience, making the experience that advertisers create more relevant to what the customer is doing immediately.
To understand this, we need to have in mind that traditional advertising has a terrible habit of interrupting people to bring their message, making it the current focus of the viewers attention. The worst thing about passive advertising is that it’s static and one sided, pumping you with information that might pause your YouTube video or bulk up your Facebook news feed.
How Is VR Any Different?
Let’s say you you love cooking. Therefore you like to watch cooking shows as they inspire you with new ideas and allow you to get the hang of new cooking techniques. And as you know, cooking shows are often sponsored by manufacturers of cooking appliances.
This often works in a way that the chef or the host highlights the functionalities of a certain product. Watching a cooking show on TV, YouTube, or any other streaming service doesn’t feel like standing next to a big shelf filled with ovens and food processors in a giant appliance store.
That is where VR advertising sees its opportunity – in an environment where the ad doesn’t look like an interruption to the natural flow of information, but more as a natural extension of the existing content.
Movie and video game trailers are going to become more effective, but this is only the tip of the iceberg.
As you may have heard, Comic Con, pioneered a new idea in the event management industry when they offered their visitors to interact with X-Men members via Oculus Rift. No matter what else occurred that night (and some brilliant occurrences were taking place all over), this simple VR device was able to completely steal the show.
Even Paul McCartney decided to make one of his concerts available as a VR experience. This means, that with a proper headset and VR device, it will be as if you were there.
Have no doubt about it, as soon as the first one of these devices appears in retail stores, real estate brokers and property marketers will rush to embrace all the advantages they represent.
The most logical item on their agenda will be the ways in which property marketing can become more engaging than ever. First of all, VR will enable both architects and designers to have more immersion in their projects, as well as to perform their jobs with more safety.
The notion of VR will allow an architect to walk through the house they designed, days and weeks before construction works even begin.
Needless to say, this will not only make the entire process simpler but much more effective as well.
Additionally, just imagine the idea of visiting a home you intend to buy without ever leaving your room or your chair. Since the beginning, marketers have put a lot of effort into making their products and ads closer to people by making them more appealing and convenient. And this is as convenient as it gets.
Still, the best thing here is not convenience, but effectiveness. Potential clients will be able to visit several venues without having to waste their time and resources on physically moving from one location to another. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out how this can make them more open towards making a purchase.
Replacing Mailing Services
Even though mailing services are still the backbone of digital marketing, VR is going to completely change the playing field.
There are at least 16 things that people hate about email marketing. When all of this is taken into consideration, one can’t help to think that this is a generally negative experience. Now, the word negative is definitely not something you want to associate your marketing endeavors with.
Instead of creating something remotely negative, VR will enable marketers to replace annoying emails with brief and vivid interactive messages.
The travel industry is yet another target for disruption that virtual reality could cause.
There are many places around the globe that do their own advertising and people who witness their glory always tend to return. Unfortunately, if potential tourists are thousands of miles away, without knowledge of the place or inclinations towards ever going there, the situation is quite different. Luckily, with a VR device, any potential traveler will be able to have a brief preview of what the location looks like, and that will probably be one of the key factors when looking to book their next adventure.
In a recent panel discussion moderated by David Kickpatrick, CEO of Techonomy and the author of The Facebook Effect, Oculus VR’s head of worldwide studios, Jason Rubin, stated that “People are not only using it for content but for marketing purposes, and it’s been extremely effective.” He also said that “it really has so many potentials that it’s impossible to know where this goes. But it’s going.”
That is, of course, one of the reasons why Facebook closed the $2bn deal when they bought Oculus back in March 2014.
It is clear that VR is going to be the next big thing in the world of marketing, and businesses all over the world are faced with a choice. Adjust or perish, there is no middle ground.
Still, the ability to adapt to the new state of things is what separates the best from the rest.
Raul is a B.Sc. in Innovative entrepreneurship and his main areas of interest is digital marketing for enterprises and small businesses. He is also a regular contributor on technivorz.com. Follow him on Twitter at @
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- How Virtual Reality Is Re-Shaping The Marketing Landscape – Feb 12, 2016
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