How VR marketing will affect consumer to brand interaction
Immersive technology, the group name for augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) is not the future, it is now! It is no secret that in 2015 when VR became a reality, it wasn’t much use. But through years of development and improvements, top tech companies such as Google, Samsung, HTC and Oculus are finally achieving great things with augmented reality, in a range of different forms to increase their consumer to brand interaction.
This has gained rapid popularity, especially with a national lockdown in place for both consumers and businesses. With new innovations, there are much more applications VR can be used in a range of industries and formats.
The gaming industry in recent years has skyrocketed with this new technology with companies like Sony PlayStation utilizing this technology to create their own VR headset and an extensive array of games to play with.
Other industries such as healthcare, travel and business are opening up the way they deal with their customers by using features from their social media platforms such as Instagram and Snapchat. Some organizations create their own apps which bring a more direct form of marketing. Many organizations are struggling to adopt these new methods of marketing so turn to a brand strategy agency to help change their brand image and become in line with the new technology and expanding their markets. In this article, we will go through how VR and AR will affect the business of today and their uses.
What is the difference between AR and VR marketing?
Virtual reality marketing is where brands promote their products or themselves using virtual or augmented reality. The technology creates a new fake, realistic world that is sometimes multisensory and sometimes visual, pending on the device. A full virtual headset is usually multisensory and offers a completely immersive experience, whereas a VR Snapchat filter overlays objects onto the camera view which is a type of AR marketing as it overlays images onto the real world. AR marketing is becoming the most common form of VR marketing due to customers already having a phone or laptop rather than a headset, it is also much cheaper for companies to create this over their own headset. Some businesses say they are trying to merge the gap between VR and AR such as Microsoft’s HoloLens which offers both augmented and virtual reality.
Business applications for business.
There are so many new opportunities for businesses to market themselves and open their industry up to a whole new line of features which is exciting for all parties involved. The first company to take advantage of VR technology was Sephora who created their virtual artist app where customers could try new makeup looks as well as advise the customer on targeted recommend for that particular customer.
VR has to be one of the most important features that businesses can utilise for their employees. Soldiers, surgeons and astronauts have been using VR for years and now other businesses are starting to incorporate the training methods in their own business. People learn best by doing and getting feedback on their mistakes without causing any real damage. Companies such as Porche have adopted this method by allowing their employees to have a virtual walk around how electric cars work as well as giving them quizzes to help them retain the information.
The retail industry is ever-expanding and evolving which means competition is rife. For businesses to gain a competitive advantage they are creating new customer experiences which are memorable and exciting and that is exactly what VR is doing for retail. VR is allowing customers to have their shopping experience away from their store, customers can experience the products and not just see like you would on their online store.
VR platforms such as Iris allow architects to make their imagination a reality, letting them see a full-scale concept of their design. VR also enables them to walk clients through their designs before they start building. This allows their clients to give as much feedback and request alterations before it is too late to do so. This new technology makes it much easier for prospective clients to visualise 3D computer models in an immersive environment.
How are brands using VR and AR?
Ikea has revolutionised how people can design the interior of their homes. Ikea Place allows a customer to place Ikea furniture in their home so they can see how everything looks before purchasing the items. Ikea already had a 3D conversion in their app but this is much more realistic with accurate sizing scales to suit each room as well as a comparison function so the customer can see a range of options.
Greenpeace has used its VR platform to bring the immersive experience of being in someone else’s shoes. VR has the ability to create empathy by taking the user to another world and experiencing things first hand. It has been shown that more people are likely to donate to the cause they experience. Greenpeace utilises this technology at festivals such as Glastonbury to encourage people to sign up by showing people far away locations like the Arctic.
Isn’t it annoying when you paint your room and then realise halfway through that you hate it? Delux has utilised VR technology by allowing its users to try out paint on their walls for free by using their app. This saves time and paints when designing any room. The App takes into consideration the light and shades of the room so it gives a realistic view of how it will look. It also allows the user to create borders that can cut out furniture etc.
VR technology is here to stay and is being used for more applications every year. Who knows what VR will be doing for us in 30 years. With development ever-changing, it is exciting to think that VR will be in our everyday use. Businesses are continuously developing their apps or VR kits to keep up with the competition and other businesses are just starting to venture into the world of VR.