Exploring Advertising in Virtual Reality
Every month we gather our team around a specific theme for the purpose of education, stimulation and, of course, new product development. We use this occasion to open our minds, trying to understand what will come in our field and how can we make great experiences out of it. We call it Hackathon, and at the end of the day the goal is always to have a demo or a proof of concept to show.
Advertising in virtual reality
For this event, the theme was advertising in virtual reality. The assignment was defined by these parameters:
• Use the accelerator
• Encapsulated world
• 3D feeling
• Web based technology
•Smooth user experience
•Action Spots / Interaction points
Choosing an entry level
We basically went down to the consumer electronic store and got a couple of Google Cardboards to meet the lowest level of Virtual Reality, and the lowest threshold for the media consumers to start from. Google Cardboard is a cardboard-box with lenses and a column, separating what one eye sees from the other. It also contains a magnet and a NFC tag, for interaction.
Balloon – Fuldemo
With the frames set, we started exploring techniques and frameworks, first we made a spherical image of our office, starring ourselves. When looking at each and everyone of us a balloon appears above the head….well see for yourself. This is what we call a “fuldemo”, a quickly made demo, just as a proof of concept.
Electronics in space
We also made a commercial application placing out consumer electronics in outer space, and made some actions while placing them in focus. The demo will be published here shortly.
Use the VR glasses or see it on the phone
It is easy to add a script changing a spherical-image from a 360°-experience, (using your screen rotating the phone), into a VR-experience in 3D.
What you need
For a basic level you are going to need spherical-graphic, either a photo or an illustration. Then its up to you creating what will happen in the parallel world, either you can just look around or add points of interaction and navigation.
From DIY to professional
For the curious, non professional, it is easy to make a spherical image just for fun, there are plenty of apps for that. For example you can use Google Streetview that have a camera for the purpose. For professional use there are plenty of cameras letting you take 360-images.
Are we ready for VR-advertising in a broader perspective?
Well, the potential receiver of the message need to be willing and prepared to receive the message. For the 3D-experience, one will most likely already have to have the gadgets on, since it, after all, just is a commercial message, unless you have made a kickass banner, leaving people so curious they get their goggles on, but that is a challenge.
Gaming is of course the biggest driver in developing virtual reality experiences where VR advertising already is a fact, but soon it will hit a much larger audience since dominant actors like Google, Facebook and Apple are investing heavily in VR right now.
For many purposes you can use the technique either as a 3D experience or just by seeing it through the phone using the accelerometer.
Fields of early adaption and the near future
So for us at Madington we are already delivering content made for 360°, but will shortly just add the extension and choice to experience content in 3D. It is actually very simple to get started.
The most obvious fields of early adaptation are real estate agents, tourist destinations, house manufacturers etcetera. Buy yourself a bunch of cardboard glasses. Get your brand on, hand them out to your audience and present your stuff in a new, three dimensional way.
The above mentioned fields of application are interesting, but what will happen when we get out of our preconceived notions and think outside the box, what magic can we make and which brands will take the lead?
When web consumers and brands are ready, we are.
#VirtualReality #Hackathon #Future