2017 looks set to be the year that virtual reality finally becomes mainstream, with big name brands like Facebook, HTC, PlayStation, Google and Samsung all planning to release their own VR headsets. Soon, the technology will no longer be accessible only to fanatics with huge budgets, but available for everyone to enjoy.
Virtual reality offers brands an opportunity to connect with their customers in a unique way. However, as with any major development, digital marketers need to tread carefully if they’re going to succeed.
Virtual reality is an incredibly immersive experience, unlike anything else. While this offers up the potential for huge engagement, the margin for error is much smaller. People will be far less forgiving of bad virtual reality experiences than they would be with traditional media. Also, the recent rise of ad-blockers has shown just how much more discerning and demanding consumers are becoming, so it’s vital that brands and marketing agencies get it right.
There are a number of early adopter brands that have already started taking advantage of virtual reality, with varying degrees of success. Here are a few of our favourites.
IKEA’s kitchen experience
IKEA’s offering gave users the chance to explore a virtual reality kitchen and alter things like colours and styles. It also gave users the option to view the kitchen from either an adult or child’s height, giving them multiple perspectives.
UNICEF 360˚ is a documentary series that allows users to experience first-hand what life is like for vulnerable children around the world. Using a smartphone app and a Google Cardboard-esque viewer, UNICEF transports viewers to Uganda and Jordan, providing a unique insight into the important work the charity does.
Disney and Dalí: Architects of the Imagination
The surrealist works of Salvador Dalí are a perfect fit for the world of virtual reality, so it was no surprise to see the Dalí Museum introduce this technology as part of their ‘Architects of the Imagination’ exhibit. The finished exhibit is a perfect example of new and old coming together to create something amazing.
Have you seen any virtual reality campaigns that have really stood out and amazed you? Let us know via Twitter!