We’ve seen a few big brands dip their toes into the new world of virtual reality with Google, Facebook and Samsung heavily investing into the market. However, is virtual reality a fad for those with out of this world budgets, or is it the new future of marketing?
Some are insistent that this immersive technology creates a sense of excitement and intrinsic magic that other technologies fail to provide. Creating a single point of focus, VR cuts out the distractions for audiences, capturing all of their attention.
Other more sceptic marketers believe through putting on a headset you cut people off from reality and human interaction. It might be an exciting experience but it’s not really real. Will the use of VR lead to increased isolation and disassociation?
The guys at Hydra have given their opinions on this divisive subject
Gemma: VR is a very new technology; Google Cardboard has made it easier for everyone to use but it is still very niche. I think there’s lots of potential for the future as long as someone can figure out a way to make virtual reality more useful.
Josh: I’ve mainly seen VR used for gaming. I think it gives an immersive experience but until it becomes more affordable I can’t see it working for marketing. However, while it’s still new it can be used for special events to bring people together to experience it. We’ll have to wait and see if it becomes more mainstream, but I see it more suited to the gaming market.
Michael: To be useful for marketing VR needs a much higher following and become more mainstream. If it becomes more accessible, then we might see it being used for advertising. If a platform like YouTube expanded more into VR I can see advertising being used there. Right now there needs to be much more development as I don’t know if there’s enough ROI at the minute to make it worthwhile.
James: VR tech is still starting up; I think it’s better for people to get on board with it now as it's likely to become more mainstream in the future. I think 360 video/photography will be more useful for marketing than VR as it's much more accessible and can be viewed on more platforms such as Social Media and Youtube without the need for expensive hardware. I think as the tech progresses we will see more VR from brands.
Ryan: I see VR being more useful for staged events. I’m not sure headsets will catch on in households other than with gamers as virtual reality is more likely to progress in the gaming market with the upcoming release of the Playstation VR.
Still in its infancy, it’s hard to say what impact this exciting new technology will make on the world of marketing. However, big brands are investing a lot into this tech and we’ve got much more to come from virtual reality
So is virtual reality the future of marketing? Time will tell.
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