Why Virtual Reality Marketing is the Heart of Digital Transformation
If you want to know why brands should place virtual reality marketing at the heart of their digital transformation efforts, read this post.
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As technology continues to grow, so too does the expectation of our customers. This is why it’s essential that you’re always seeking advantages in the pursuit of impressing them with unforgettable experiences. Virtual reality marketing can help to deliver unforgettable customer experiences as a central part of your digital transformation strategy, while also helping your business to prepare for a more interconnected future.
The recent shift towards fully embracing digital operations among brands that previously enjoyed a largely brick-and-mortar presence has challenged more enterprises to embrace more advanced marketing strategies in order to stand out from rivals in a fiercely competitive eCommerce market.
This has seen more brands delve deeper into the depths of eCommerce marketing in order to engage more customers and gain more impactful levels of data to build on.
Virtual reality marketing can play a leading role in both generating unforgettable customer shopping experiences and in helping your business to obtain more actionable insights as well as driving more internal development also. Let’s explore further why brands should place VR marketing at the heart of their digital transformation efforts:
What is Virtual Reality Marketing?
When we talk about virtual reality, it’s easy to conjure up images of science fiction films and low-resolution 3D shapes in an open space–but VR marketing has the potential to be so much more impactful than you may first believe.
Today, many brands are waking up to the potential of VR marketing, and as the age of the metaverse continues to loom over us, virtual reality is becoming increasingly likely to hold its status as an industry game changer.
So what actually is VR marketing? In a nutshell, virtual reality marketing refers to the incorporation of VR technology within your standard marketing approach. While this could be centrally focused on delivering an exciting and immersive customer experience, virtual reality could also bring widespread internal improvements for a brand–including analytical insights, training measures like VR onboarding, and more immersive collaboration spaces.
These wholly engaging brand experiences are just a VR headset away, and the hardware can bring greater levels of personalization, and the opportunity for users to experience a brand and its products in an entirely different way.
How VR Can Help Brands to Secure Growth
The excellence of virtual reality is that it empowers businesses to connect to their target audience in a way that transcends traditional media like print advertising, television adverts, and online ads, and presents potential customers with more innovative promotional materials.
This helps brands to manage ever-growing customer expectations and to exceed their wants and needs with advanced technologies. Utilizing VR in the right way helps to empower brands to address existing pain points within their conversion funnels.
With the help of virtual reality marketing, brands have the potential to develop their own sprawling digital spaces in which products and services can be accurately rendered and demonstrated in a more comprehensive way than ever before. This means that shoes can be tried on as if the customer was in their own store, and larger products like cars can be explored and interacted with for a more comprehensive overview of its features and perks.
Existing Virtual Reality Use Cases
Although virtual reality marketing may seem like a daunting prospect for your business, use cases are becoming more widespread today–with VR technology delivering immersive experiences across a number of industries, including:
We’ve seen virtual reality combine effectively with retail, and it’s easy to work out why. The brick-and-mortar try-before-you-buy experience is the one area of convenience that eCommerce has struggled to replicate online. However, VR platforms make it easy to try on new clothes and accessories to help customers to really get to grips with how they would look in reality.
The Covid-19 pandemic saw an acceleration in the growth of virtual reality tours of real estate. These digital property walkthroughs meant that buyers can virtually explore every nook and cranny of the property they want to buy from anywhere in the world.
These tours are already accurately rendered to the point where the exact sizes and finishes of each room can be replicated for the user.
The hospitality sector can utilize virtual reality to help display their venues for customers and organizers to explore–and how certain spaces can be adapted to different occasions.
Once again, this perk can be excellent for prospective organizers who are unable to comfortably schedule an in-person visit to view a venue themselves.
Virtual reality and tourism are a match made in heaven. Engaging experiences lie at the core of the tourism industry, so it’s clear to see why VR works so well.
Here, accurate scale models of attractions can be rendered to enable users to feel as though they’re actually visiting a hot spot across the world. These experiences can help prospective consumers to develop a sense of attachment to a virtual location, and to become more motivated to plan a trip in reality.
The automotive industry can help customers to fully explore and even test drive their vehicles in virtual reality.
While this approach won’t be able to provide much information about handline and what the car actually feels like to drive, VR can help companies to empower users to virtually try out a vehicle despite living many miles away from a dealership.
Furthermore, customizations to a model can be made on the fly in VR showrooms, helping to mix and match vehicles with ease.
While today’s interpretation of VR marketing helps to bring new experiences to customers from the comfort of their own homes, tomorrow the virtual reality landscape looks even brighter as the age of the metaverse is set to deliver even more impactful customer experiences.
Growing Capabilities and the Metaverse
The metaverse promises to be an all-encompassing online space that will challenge the principles of marketing forever. While there are still certainly question marks over the full scale of the impact the metaverse will have, it seems certain that it will provide brand new approaches to brand identity to explore.
We’re already seeing fresh virtual reality marketing approaches being set into action in the metaverse. Leading fashion brands like Gucci have created their own ‘Gucci Town’ fashion outlet in the Roblox metaverse–which helps visitors to learn about the brand’s history, play themed mini-games, and purchase digital clothes for their in-game avatar.
The trend of building themed virtual stores in the metaverse isn’t limited to high fashion, either. Other renowned brands like Nike, Etsy, Netflix, Wendy’s, McDonalds, and Samsung are just a small number of a vast range of names to have already built into the metaverse.
One of the recurring themes surrounding the string of metaverse installations is deeper product exploration and an immersive approach towards looking at brand history. However, virtual reality marketing can be far more impactful than simply generating amazing experiences for customers.
Brands like Lowe’s have developed a virtual experience that helps customers to explore and try out new products to see whether they would fit in within their own real-world locations. While the technology can help to deliver great insights for the customer, it also enables Lowe’s to collect vital data about customer interest in various product lines, which items gained more attention, and how successful products could be incorporated into a functional marketing strategy.
The metaverse is still in its early development stages, but brands have already developed successful ways of marketing themselves within the sprawling virtual reality spaces. When Gucci launched its precursor to Gucci Town, the ‘Gucci Garden’, the brand claimed that it received 20 million visitors in just two weeks.
With a clear combination of technological innovation coupled with audience appetite, the future certainly looks bright for virtual reality marketing and the market opportunity it appears set to deliver brands.