Virtual Reality is Here
Aug 8, 2016
“There are often indicators in other industries that you can keep an eye on for ‘what’s coming next’ in your particular discipline – for me, working on the tech and artistic end of things, the gaming industry tends to be a great indicator of future trends in advertising and marketing,” explains Jesse Stormer, motion graphics designer at Centerline.
“Whatever the game industry is doing now, you can bet clients will be asking for it to help market their product within months. At the moment, industry indicators are pointing at investing research time into immersive 360º video and virtual reality.”
In order to stay on top of the trend, and to make sure he would be ready if any clients were interested in virtual reality, Stormer purchased an HTC Vive.
“There are a lot of practical applications for VR, even though games are what is currently getting the attention,” said Stormer.
What does he mean by “practical applications?”
“I think it’s going to have a place in marketing and advertising,” Stormer explains.
“Traditional advertising is flashy – it’s like slapping someone in the face to get their attention. With VR, people are actually experiencing the content and messaging in a fully immersive environment. You aren’t simply watching it – you’re immersed in it, and you have the ability to actively engage with the content. Our brains are hardwired to sponge up information when you experience it, as opposed to just viewing it.”
Virtual reality can be intimidating, though. First time users are often wary of strapping on the headset. Stormer brought his VR setup into the Centerline office in order to help combat that fear, and to also get people thinking about how their clients could be using virtual reality.
“I wasn’t too worried about how I looked, but was super excited to try it out!” said Samantha Cibelli, associate marketing manager at Centerline. “I let Jesse choose the program for me, and he chose a zombie game. It was pretty easy to figure out how to play, but I was so involved in it that when I finished the first level I was actually scared because it felt so real! Which is silly to say, since it’s a zombie game. It took me a while to calm down afterwards.”
By making it available to others, Stormer was hoping to spark the imaginations of coworkers for future client work.
“I wanted to let as many people as possible get wrapped up in it, to prep their brains to let VR be an option in connecting and brainstorming ideas. It’s such a new concept – and the idea of being fully immersed in something just doesn’t make sense until you experience it. People definitely look and feel goofy at first, but worrying about that disappears once you’re immersed in the environment around you.”
When thinking of how to introduce virtual reality right now, Stormer’s focus is on events.
“We’re talking about events at the moment – making a snazzy video, then pairing it with a small, interactive ‘game’ space where people can navigate and learn more about the product using virtual reality, for live event spaces.”
Still not sure how you could use VR? Check out this list of the 10 best uses of virtual reality in marketing.
Learn more about the different types of Immersive Technology by checking out this blog detailing the differences between 360º video, virtual reality and augmented reality. We also created an album of the artwork our designers made using Tilt Brush by Google.
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