Every day the technology market is looking for new ways to bring in new consumers by planning out their desires. Today we’re taking a look at VR, AR and 360° videos. Your newsfeed is full of research reports, big companies’ new strategies announcements news of latest devices created to interact with the virtual world. Reports like “the VR-market in 2020 will be 20 times bigger than in 2016” are not news anymore. The content creators only have to connect with their viewers and understand what they want. Just like always. However, this time, they will use VR.
Many brands explore 360° videos, AR and VR technologies for innovative marketing and ad campaigns. Why? Because of high emotional interaction that this technology provides. Real people who share emotions are inspiring and, therefore, are more appealing in the eyes of the consumer. Besides the ability to view the product from all sides, see its birth and even take part in its creation establishes consumer’s trust.
Such play on human emotions reaps huge profits. According to BI Intelligence’s research, Hong Kong Airlines’ 360° ad was 35 times more effective than its 2D counterpart. During the first 4 months of 2017 IMAX VR Centers concluded more than 25 000 tests, with one of such centers in Los Angeles making $15 000 weekly.
The launch of YouTube 360° videos in 2015 was a huge step for marketing. Full-on, rich visual content doesn’t require additional hardware, so it’s more consumer-friendly.
March of 2015 saw the first 360° interactive videos. Prior to Wimbledon 2015 Open Championship they showed a tennis court from a bird’s eye view.
This year Facebook launched its first 360° videos. From this moment, Google and Facebook became major competitors in the new field. At first YouTube VR was limited to Android, while Facebook ran its VR tech only on iOS, however now both platforms have expanded.
“The expansion of supported devices across both platforms means we can reach a broader base of mobile consumers,” said Shelby Georgis, creative director at DDB Chicago.
There’s some controversy as to which platform will be better at promoting 360° videos. However, Matt Powell, global chief technology officer at KBS, said the following: “If brands and agencies are trying to decide which platform they want to be on, they’re already having the wrong conversation, and someone should get punched.”
Snapchat introduced 10-seconds-long 360° videos in the summer of 2016. Sony was the first company to make use of this feature by debuting Do Not Breathe.
AR went mainstream in 2016 on mobile platforms with the release of Pokemon Go.
At the same time, Microsoft launched Hololens for entrepreneurs and professionals. In June 2017, Apple launched ARKit, while Google made their ARCore available in August.
During the iPhone X reveal event in September, Apple showcased a new way of using augmented reality. On screen, they showed how the technology picks up user’s facial expressions in real time and animates 3D emojis accordingly.
VR, AR and 360° are great new technologies that can serve as innovative tools for brands. Its immersion depth and interaction level have conquered hearts of those who can’t wait to try something new.