Psychological Benefits of Using VR in Experiential Marketing

So you have a product that’s got to be truly sensed and experienced to be understood and you know once your target consumer does, they’ll be hooked. Enter VR, or Virtual Reality, which refers to artificial, computer-generated environments that combine immersive, high-end graphics and audio to make users feel like they can interact with what is around them. Most VR experiences involve the use of specialized headsets that fully immerse the user in a virtual world. It’s probably the easiest, and most efficient, way to bring your customers into an environment where they can interact with your products in a real scenario.  

As you are probably aware, the best marketing experiences use the power of emotion to draw people in and make authentic connections. What better way to tap into the power of emotions than using VR technology in your marketing experience?

The incorporation of VR into all types of marketing programs and events is at an all time high, and looks to be growing. In fact, consumers are likely going to start expecting it. By 2020, a third of consumers are expected to be using VR**.  Concerns about low user numbers and cost may lead marketers to feel hesitant about using VR technology. However, there are many benefits for small and large brands alike in using VR.

VRSo what are the benefits and how can you incorporate VR  in your next experiential marketing program?

Customers today are seeking authentic, engaging, interactive, and personal experiences. VR is the ideal platform for connecting with your audience on an emotional level.  VR allows for a totally immersive experience. One of the challenges of experiential marketing is grabbing and holding your target audience’s attention, and VR eliminates outside distractions to allow you to capture the full attention of your potential customer. One of the benefits of a fully immersive experience is that it facilitates active rather than passive consumption of your product.

VR involves high sensory impact – not just sight but also sound, and in some cases, touch or smell. The senses play a large role in our emotional reactions. In other words, what we sense triggers a feeling! In fact, VR has been demonstrated to have a large impact on emotions, and has even been used to treat disorders such as anxiety and PTSD.  And as we’ve written about previously, many business decisions are driven primarily by emotions.

MarketingVRAR FeatureEffective experiential marketing uses storytelling to connect with your audience. VR is unique in that it allows for storyLIVING rather than solely storytelling. A great example of engaging your audience in experiencing a story is the New York Times film The Displaced.” The NYT gave away Google Cardboard viewers to subscribers who were then immersed in refugee camps and abandoned villages, eliciting the fear and despair these lost children felt. Although not a marketing campaign, the publicity generated grabbed the attention of potential subscribers and made them feel deeply connected to the tragic story.

VR can also be used to communicate your brand’s mission or message, facilitating engagement and connection with your audience. TOMS, the shoes and apparel company with a charitable mission, took customers on a virtual giving trip to demonstrate their company’s message.

VR is the perfect match for experiential marketing

Need a few examples to jumpstart your thinking?

  • The Art of Patrón. :Patrón used VR to immerse consumers in the product lifecycle from agave field to being served at a glamorous party and made VR equipment the star of their mobile roadshow.   
  • Hussman Insights Experience Tour: One of our B2B customers, its mobile roadshow included a VR exhibit, which allowed users to experience a grocery store filled with Insight cases in their natural environment filled with produce, meat, seafood, and other refrigerated foods.
  • Innovation Labs: Lowe’s uses VR project visualization to allow customers to visualize how their space will look upon project completion.
  • Holoroom How To are using VR to assist customers in learning the skills to carry out a DIY project.

Your brand could be the next one to harness the power of VR, foster an authentic connection with consumers, and create brand fanatics.

Want to learn more about how we can help drive brand awareness and revenue for your brand using VR technology and experiential marketing? Call us today! 636.449.3162

image1ZTE Smartphones Experience Tour