Thank you to for inviting me to attend today. I am very excited to be here. Today I hope that I will be able to share some great insight into an industry that I am very passionate about and enjoy working in. Feel free to chime in with questions at any point, if you want more information or want me to explain something in more detail. It’s probably better than waiting till the end and it will help us have more a discussion than you just having to listen to me for an hour!
I believe in the power of VR. This a technology with the capacity to affect me emotionally, physically and genuinely view the world in a brand-new way. People laugh, smile, cry in virtual reality for many different reasons. VR allows a person to engage with an environment in a brand-new way, leaving an impact for days, taking you back repeatedly to think about what you saw. I can take you back in time, I can tell you a story through the eyes of another. Or I can create a data visualisation and allow ten people to view an upcoming project and edit in real time without having to send emails or set up a conference call.
I run a company called Virtual Umbrella. I am very proud to be a part of the thriving UK community and help shout about the great companies and content on a global stage. Virtual Umbrella is built on passion for the technology, the community, and the future of the technology. We are built on honesty and understand what this industry can really do.
Easy to get excited about new medium and use it straight away without understanding it completely. We have to view virtual reality as a new way of telling stories and ideas rather than attempting to implement existing ones using it. For example, you can’t just take your tv advert and put it in a vr headset like when companies upload their ads to YouTube. We have to view VR as a whole new way for our audience to consume content and part of this means understanding what they do and don't want to see.
We use VR because of it’s immersive possibilities. You can empathise with your characters, which is not possible through television or cinema. It;s new and novel which makes it exciting to use. It’s not like digital where you have to use unskippable ads to get someone to engage with your brand, audiences are begging for more content, it just has to be good content. More companies are investing time and money into the medium to discover what it can really do for them.
In the past 12 months there has been a huge amount of statistics quoted, written, published by industry analysts. Saying the industry will be worth 3 bullion, 40 billion, 500 billion by 2020. But none of this matter. The important stats are the ones about our users. According to Mintel’s Autumn trends 2016 survey, 89% of people have not used VR, this means there are numerous untapped audiences and opportunities for you to activate your brand and messaging using VR.
360 video - passive vr – interactive Does anyone know the difference? Leading on from this there a few areas of content that are often concentrated on
VR in very popular in the automative industry as it can be used for rapid prototying and visualisations but this took it the next level Collaborative project between JLR’s lead agency and two innovation agencies (Imagination & Rewind). Goal was to ‘reinvent the press launch’, something that had not been attempted by the automotive industry. The I-pace was shown in virtual reality within a social space. Users could see avatars of each other in VR and the car was shown on the shared table in front of them all. They had 66 connected vives – showing a multi-user experience over two contients. 3 live streamed presenters. This was the first of it’s kind. By hosting the VR experience at the press launch, there was no barriers to entry because the teams supplied all the tech. Journalists and key industry simply had to turn up and sit down.
Blackwood A leading national Housing and Care provider specialising in homes and care services for people with disabilities, based in Scotland with 1600 properties and 4 care homes. Blackwood created a 360 video detailing the daily life of one of their residents. The primary goal of this was to show members of the team exactly what level of care they were supposed to provide residents with however the effects of the piece went much further. During the internal annual conference, staff members were shown the piece and began to empathise with their residents in ways that had not been noted before. The main character and viewpoint in the piece is of a resident in a wheelchair. Staff noted how they felt ‘intimidated by people towering over them’ and ‘they had no control when they were being wheeled along by staff’. Following this staff began to collaborate and think of innovative ways to care for their residents with this new empathy of their situation.
Do not make rollercoasters. Don’t create content for the sake of it. The idea and your core message should always come first.
VR is a powerful way to tell a story, but it needs to be engaging and interesting. Be aware that the emotional and mental impact of VR is much higher. VR content is 4x more impactful than ‘flat’ media. need to 5 minutes compared to 20 for a short story, etc... Imagine the power a VR film has in comparison to sitting in the cinema. With a 30 minutes piece you experience the same, but more impact from the story than sitting down for two hours.
If there is anything you take away from today, this is what I would love you to think about. I have found that those who’s first experience of VR is bad, there is a high chance that they will never pick up a headset again. Yes, you can have outstanding content, but without a dedicated audience it means nothing.
VR has the power to really change the way you view a product or a brand. Imagine being able to reach a brand new audience, or re-identify a trust or love from your current audience. Be aware - if its a bad piece of content, you could push a consumer away from VR again. Not just for your brand but everyone else too.
With a lot of content created for the consumer there has to be a reason or end goal for them consuming that particular content. That could be a video, flyer, email or social media post – you have to think about why your consumer would be interested in this. This does not disappear when it comes to VR.
Now this is something that not everyone thinks about and is one of the biggest problems that I have to solve for companies who have had content created for them but not been given much guidance on this next step. Experiential activation - using VR as a part of a larger event or stand Consumers don’t own headsets, remember the potential of /Facebook 360 and Youtube 360 which can be used with a smartphone. No need for a headset.
As someone who has tried a lot of VR over the past couple of years, I have had access to a variety of content. One of the biggest thought process I now think about is if this content was created for me? For example a company called VR City and the BBC together created a programmed 360 piece of content called #nosmalltalk – a sit down conversation with two inspiring young women talking about issues, millennials and online brand and problems. This content is easy to download from the BBC website and targets a brand new market. Podcast style.
If you have not already try VR. The beauty of the VR community is that there are a lot of VR meetups, conferences, and internal workshops so there are many opportunities for you to try out the technology, speak to developers and those who use this tech everyday. Most of them are more than happy to share some insight.
Final thought & questions
Preparing Your Marketing Strategies for Virtual Reality - Virtual Umbrella
Virtual UmbrellaPreparing your marketing strategies for virtual reality
WE BELIEVE IN THE
OF VIRTUAL REALITY
@bertaroo |@K_Samantha1 | @Virtualumbrella