Beyond the cool experiences you see in disruptive technology like virtual reality, the truly unique brand proposition is that it is so immersive and non-interruptive. But inserting your brand into it in very inauthentic way could be detrimental to your brand promise itself. If you do it wrong, you're screwed. Today brands are passively interacting with their consumers and it's not enough to build loyal fans. In a Virtual Reality world, consumers will have the opportunity to make a stronger connection with that brand, self-selecting to interact with it and then personally identifying with the brand.
Ask 'Why this technology?'
More important than running out and buying into the latest future tech trend, is should you invest the time building new technology skills and expertise for your business or brand? Will it convert? Will it add value and keep your brand relevant to a generation of users and consumers? Or will it just be flashy tech for tech's sake.
Atlanta-based Moxie, organizer of the FutureX Live event has taken their brand responsibility role extremely serious on behalf of their clients. "As marketers and advertisers, we need to introduce future technology to our clients, not only to show them what they can do, but also to talk about the potential risks of how to approach it and what to do with it. More important, what not to do," said Moxie CMO, Justin Archer.
Think first person first from Viewer to User to Fan
Representing a myriad of brands from movie studios to financial services, Moxie is challenged to grow marketing and advertising conversion with new tech, while maintaining brand integrity. They don't believe in using VR or 3D Printing for the sake of innovation. Instead they use technology to solve a client's problem and delivers on the business objective. They are explorers of the new frontier in a digital age. By identifying new media outlets for brands to tell their stories in an authentic way.
Imagine how horrible it would be if you are in one of these VR experiences in some magical land, and all of a sudden, an advertisement for Ritz Crackers pops up in the corner and intrudes on your immersive experience. Online today, it happens all the time and we are tuning them out more and more. So the real challenge for your brand capturing a busy mind's attention at the right moment with the right message.
Find a New Technology Guide
With any new technology comes the cost/value proposition. With any new technology, finding experience to build the right content and message is costly but it is even more costly to make a mistake. Investing in good 3D print designers, skilled 360 videographers, or good marketers who are actively researching and pioneering the industry is key to avoiding rookie errors. Although these technologies may be new to you there are those out there, like Moxie, who have been paying attention and exploring for decades.
Take a Risk
FutureX Live panel moderator and Rebel & Reason Founder, Nicola Smith, is passionate about new technology. Innovation strategy consulting firms like hers have been immersed in disruptive technology before it was even a consideration for marketing applications. So she is excited to finally see the disruption occurring and more businesses and brands reach the point where the new technology is addressing "a fundamental human need. A need for acceptance, a need for acknowledgement, the need to communicate, the need to be heard and adoption and application of various innovations is just different ways of doing it."
Now is the time for your brand to do a little exploring and your business to do some technology innovation education. Even if you are a tech-skeptic like me, you might be surprised that there is a potential new frontier that will go beyond consumers and clients to a new generation of fans. Take a risk and be a tech pioneer.