Virtual Reality in Marketing – the Future is Here!

Party like it’s 1999


2001: A Space Odyssey


George Orwell’s 1984


Conan O’Brien’s “In the year 2000”

Huge figures in society have used dates in their works to conflate a pending arrival of the ballyhooed “future”. Dates came and went. The “future” did not materialize.

While their visions of that future weren’t always positive, we did survive Y2K at least, so there’s that.

And I don’t know about you, but 56k dial-up internet definitely didn’t feel like the gleaming, high-tech future we were promised.

So we’ve been wrong before, but not this time. This time it’s different. It’s 2018 and we have electric cars, bikes and scooters…everywhere – I’m looking at you, Ashton Kutcher. You’ve got croissants being combined with donuts (cronuts) and virtual reality (VR) – the future is here!

I recently read a Forbes piece by Michelle Greenwald talking about VR in Marketing that got me thinking about all of this. Some of the VR applications already in use blew me away. In promoting the film Dunkirk, Warner Brothers released a Dunkirk WebVR game allowing players to get an immersive experience of the battle of Dunkirk. Michelle does an excellent job in the piece of grabbing your attention with all of these cool examples of VR uses, to get you to the punchline. In essence, “with great power, comes great responsibility.” In other words, what will be the impacts of VR on journalism and marketing?

A few of the questions Michelle asks are: Will VR become tiresome? Will it be even harder to break through the clutter? Will viewers become emotionally exhausted from so many VR, intense, quasi-real world experiences?

I have to admit to being averse to VR technology, viewing it as somehow unnatural in its escapism from “reality.” However, by taking this position, I realize that I was getting zero information about what VR really is – instead of the inflated boogeyman of my imagination.

VR is the future and it is here and on top! Surely nothing will knock it off its pedestal for a long ti…wait a second…Augmented Reality? Really???

Enjoy your Marketing adventures!


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