We remember the line sang by the famous Freddie Mercury. You began to wonder if this was real life or if this was just fantasy. Maybe you’ve experienced a little bit of both! Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality are a quick way to go where you’ve never gone before! VR gaming systems have been extremely popular in the last few year and now corporations have begun to see the value in it for their pocket books as well. As a matter of fact, 2018 predicted that over 171 million users would exist by this time and nearly double that by 2019.
We all know that marketing trends are constantly changing, but VR and AR seemed like something you would only see in a Sci-Fi film. Imagine instead of playing a video game, you are LIVING a video game. That’s when marketers had their "AHA" moment. Although this may seem like recent events, the start actually all began in 1968 when Ivy Sutherland designed a head mounted system to display computer generated graphics. Who knew in the 60’s that such modern ideas would emerge into our day to day lives currently?!
When the 90’s came around, the military saw it’s advantages and soon after that, the world of arts jumped on board as well. Now here we sit today with Augmented Reality breaking into the world of content creation and customer interaction. Today you can find AR/VR being used in:
Retail and Commerce
One of the largest companies known to use this technology is McDonald’s for their kid’s meals. In Sweden, the happy meals were repurposed and used as VR goggles. Jaguar used it in a promotion that allowed you to experience an epic Wimbledon moment. This went over amazingly for their brand!
One company named LaCoste even provided an app that allowed you to try on shoes! Wow! That could save someone a lot of time and hassle in the store.
CNN VR takes you to the center of their stories to experience firsthand what adventure feels like from the comfort of your favorite chair!
Toys R Us even began using AR to let you experience a store walk through. However, I think this application would have a much sadder connotation today.
So now you know the big name companies have found VR and AR useful, but I’m sure you are wondering, how can this be useful to MY company?! Let me paint a picture for you! Customers can buy items at the click of a button. If they want a shirt, they can go anywhere and have it delivered conveniently at their home. So what if that same customer could actually SEE what that shirt looks like on them from a screen? Augmented reality has just won you a customer!
Another prime example is one of my favorites. Imagine this...You are looking for a home and you have the busiest life of all time. You have kids running around pretending they are Paw Patrol characters, dogs that are being chased by those kids who are trying to rescue them, and a spouse that can’t figure out how to keep them all from destroying the walls in the hallways once they discovered the hidden bag of markers in the “junk” drawer.
You need a home with more space and perhaps freshly painted walls. Now with the click of the mouse you enter a living room through Virtual Reality. It’s a freshly listed home for sale and now you don’t even have to leave your bedroom to experience what it would be like to walk in it! Amazing! Real Estate is THRIVING in the VR world. Homes that aren’t even built can be explored and designed to YOUR needs which in turn leads to a whole lot more sales for the realtor and a smoother buying experience for the future home owner! It’s a win/win situation!
The whole idea of using these ground breaking developments are to TRY IT before you BUY IT! People buy based on emotion and convenience. Just look at Amazon. People are willing to pay more, just to have something conveniently shipped to their home. Imagine walking through a restaurant without actually taking a step in it, or hiking down a trail before booking your vacation there! The possibilities are endless!
So how do you go about using VR/AR in your marketing?
Look for reputable AR/VR Companies in your are such as Gforce Animation Inc.
Find App Developers if you plan on launching this on a Mobile platform!
Invest in User Testing. Let your consumers, employees or teams try it before implementing it into your marketing strategy
Get your audience prepped BEFORE your big launch then Launch Away!
Whether you begin today or begin tomorrow, Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality are the future of marketing! If you want to be on the cutting edge of it all, there is no time like the present to provide the most innovative content and engaging content!