The hype around VR is still in high gear, and brands want a piece of the action. 360 video is being heralded as a potentially revolutionary format. It is now showing everywhere online and on mobile.
A lot of VR companies are currently doing very well selling 360 to market brands… and yet so few VR startups use 360 efficiently to market themselves online!
Don’t go by the old saying “shoemakers’ children are the worst shod”. All the good things 360 video can do for brands, it can also do for your own VR company.
We have tested 360 video in several client campaigns, and here is what we have to report.
1. 360 Video ads are a great way to stand out
Despite all the hype, 360 video is still a new format. Facebook just started supporting the feature (and it’s still in beta), and they launched in March a Facebook 360 VR app to showcase all the 360 content hosted on their site. So remember, it’s still the early days.
On the bright side, our own tests confirm the what is reported by Google. 360 ads on Facebook had a better reach and more impressions (+20% on average) than regular ads, and most importantly 50% more 10-sec video views. To put it bluntly, 360 video ads will get you more eyeballs.
However, call-to-action and mobile are not yet supported for 360 content on Facebook. So we can’t report on click through rates just yet (although we expect cool numbers there too). Just sit tight, those features should be rolled out when 360 is out of beta with Facebook in a few weeks.
We currently recommend all our clients to get ready to use 360 ads for their own marketing as soon as the feature is out of beta.
2. Educate your client early
One of the biggest challenge of VR this year is making people aware of VR. And social media is the perfect tool for that. Remember that social media content reaches an audience in the awareness and discovery phases. Your audience is not seeking your content on social media BUT if they find it interesting and compelling they will engage.
How many of you are currently doing VR demos to clients? And how often do you meet with people who have never experienced VR in any form before? Wouldn’t it be nice if those people could get a taste of the experience before you actually meet with them? Then you’d only have to meet with more qualified leads and filter out the tire kickers, right?
VR is all about show and tell, and 360 video content is great to educate your clients on its benefits. We recommend using 360 content in your landing pages, and take this opportunity to start to tell them how VR is going to solve a problem for them (and them only) and why they should ask YOU to implement it.
When this is properly executed, we notice a significant increase in conversions. It also smoothens your sales process, and allows you to focus your energy on those high paying deals.
3. Lead by example
Last but not least, if 360 is such a great tool for your clients, why wouldn’t it be great for you? The simplest way to drive that point home is to put your money where your mouth is, and start showing your clients that your business is successful using your own technology.
Selling 360 to your clients is great, but a well implemented 360 strategy for yourself is even better!