A Roundup Of This Week’s Biggest News In VR

What Happened
This past week has been a busy week for VR announcements, with Facebook, Vimeo, and CNN all announced noteworthy VR initiatives. Let’s take a look one by one.

On Wednesday, Facebook debuted its first dedicated virtual reality app, Facebook 360. As its first dedicated VR app, the app will serve as a hub for the 360 video and photo content posted to the site. At launch, the Facebook 360 app will be available only for the Gear VR mobile headset.

Also on Wednesday, popular online video site Vimeo announced it has added support for 360-degree videos. 360-degree playback is now integrated into the Vimeo website as well as the iOS and Android apps. At launch, you can view Vimeo’s 360-degree videos in select mobile-powered VR headsets, including Google Daydream, Samsung’s Gear VR, and the Zeiss VR One. Vimeo says support for the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive is coming soon.

Earlier this week, CNN launched of CNNVR, a new immersive journalism unit that will put a virtual spin on cable news. The dedicated team will produce videos and live streams of major news events, along with a weekly virtual reality experience that viewers can access via CNNVR on the Samsung VR app, the Oculus Video app on Rift, or on the CNNVR app on Google Daydream.

What Brands Need To Do
This initiative should help further push virtual reality content into the mainstream consumer market. Facebook 360 and the VR support on Vimeo should provide two new valuable channes for brands to distribute their VR content, and CNN’s VR content unit could potentially spell marketing opportunities. As more mainstream tech and media companies rush into VR to capitalize on the booming popularity of the emerging medium, bands should take a cue and start developing VR content that truly enhances brand messaging and contributes to the campaign objectives.

How We Can Help
Our dedicated team of VR experts is here to guide marketers through the distribution landscape. We work closely with brands to develop sustainable VR content strategies to promote branded VR and 360 video content across various apps and platforms. With our proprietary technology stack powered by a combination of best-in-class VR partners and backed by the media fire-power of IPG Mediabrands, we offer customized solutions for distributing and measuring branded VR content that truly enhance brand messaging and contribute to the campaign objectives.

The Lab currently has several VR headsets, including a PlayStation VR, an Oculus Rift, an HTC Vive, and a Google Daydream, all ready for demos. Virtual reality is something that has to be experienced to be understood, so come by the Lab and ask for a VR demo to get a hands-on experience and figure out how your brand can use it to excite and engage with consumers.

 


Sources: as linked in the article

Honda Experiments With Spatial Audio In New Multi-Scenario 360 Video

What Happened
Honda is spicing up its latest 360-degree video effort with the help of spatial audio. The auto maker worked with the agency RPA to create a new 360-degree video Facebook ad for its CR-V model, which features three “sets” of scenarios, each with different audio backgrounds, that users can pan to, including a campfire, children playing in a park with a water hose, and a man doing some handy work in the yard of a suburban home. Honda leverages viewers’ Facebook data determines which of the three scenes will be the starting scenes to play.

What Brands Need To Do
The audio VR mixing feature is a relatively new capability from Facebook, and Honda is commendable for finding a clever way to use it to demonstrate the versatility of its vehicle. Spatial audio can contribute greatly to building a truly immersive experience and more brands developing branded VR experiences and 360-degree videos should consider using it to expand the perspectives of their content.

How We Can Help
Our dedicated team of VR experts is here to guide marketers through the distribution landscape. We work closely with brands to develop sustainable VR content strategies to promote branded VR and 360 video content across various apps and platforms. With our proprietary technology stack powered by a combination of best-in-class VR partners and backed by the media fire-power of IPG Mediabrands, we offer customized solutions for distributing and measuring branded VR content that truly enhance brand messaging and contribute to the campaign objectives.

If you’d like to learn more about how the Lab can help you tap into the immersive power of VR content to engage with customers, please contact our Client Services Director Samantha Holland (samantha@ipglab.com) to schedule a visit to the Lab.

 


Source: AdWeek

Header image courtesy of Honda’s Facebook Video

 

Ford Wants To Take You On A VR Ride Through Paris

What Happened
Ford is set to remake a 1976 short film “C’etait un Rendez-Vous” into a VR experience. Working with Claude Lelouch, the noted French filmmaker who helmed the original cult classic, Ford will transport the eight-minute early morning drive through Paris into virtual reality featuring a Ford Mustang. The auto brand plans to release the VR experience this month on YouTube and Facebook in the 360-degree video format. Viewers will also be able to strap on a VR headset and experience the ride in virtual reality.

What Brands Need To Do
While this is a VR concept that is both exciting and on-brand for an automaker like Ford, the distribution strategy leaves much to be desired. The mainstream adoption of VR headsets is still fairly low, and for most viewers that will only get to this VR experience merely as a 360-degree video, the visceral impact of a virtual joyride through the City of Lights will be considerably lessened. More often than not, we are seeing more and more brands making the efforts to create a piece of cool VR content, only to botch it with lazy distribution strategies. In order to truly drum up consumer interest with VR content, brands need to step up their campaign game surrounding the launch of branded VR experiences and put them in front of the right audience.

How We Can Help
Our dedicated team of VR experts is here to guide marketers through the distribution landscape. We work closely with brands to develop sustainable VR content strategies to promote branded VR and 360 video content across various apps and platforms. With our proprietary technology stack powered by a combination of best-in-class VR partners and backed by the media fire-power of IPG Mediabrands, we offer customized solutions for distributing and measuring branded VR content that truly enhance brand messaging and contribute to the campaign objectives.

If you’d like to learn more about how the Lab can help you tap into the immersive power of VR content to engage with customers, please contact our Client Services Director Samantha Holland (samantha@ipglab.com) to schedule a visit to the Lab.

 


Source: Digital Trends

Header image courtesy of Ford’s YouTube

 

U.K. Hospital Creates VR Experience To Prepare Kids For MRI Scans

What Happened
To help patients, especially children, to prepare for their first MRI scans, the Kings College Hospital in London has created a “My MRI” VR experience that is designed to familiarize first-time patients of the procedure. The hospital made an app for Google Cardboard that contains a 360-degree video to guide viewers through the process from arrival to sliding inside the MRI scanner.

What Brands Need To Do
This is an interesting use case of VR content in healthcare, as it leverages the immersive power of virtual reality to put patients at ease and prepare them for the real procedure. VR has long been a promising training tool in the medical field for simulated scenarios or virtual surgeries, but this new app shows that healthcare and medical brands can employ VR for patient-facing, informative initiatives as well.

How We Can Help
Our dedicated team of VR experts is here to guide marketers through the distribution landscape. We work closely with brands to develop sustainable VR content strategies to promote branded VR and 360 video content across various apps and platforms. With our proprietary technology stack powered by a combination of best-in-class VR partners and backed by the media fire-power of IPG Mediabrands, we offer customized solutions for distributing and measuring branded VR content that truly enhance brand messaging and contribute to the campaign objectives.

If you’d like to learn more about how the Lab can help you tap into the immersive power of VR content to engage with customers, please contact our Client Services Director Samantha Holland (samantha@ipglab.com) to schedule a visit to the Lab.

 


Source: TechCrunch

Intel Plans User-Generated 360 Video For Super Bowl Campaign

What Happened
For its upcoming Super Bowl campaign, Intel is aiming to get football fans involved to create a 360-degree video spot. The company launched a social push to get fans to visit experiencemore.intel.com to submit a selfie and create a frame featuring Tom Brady. The best images will be incorporated into a 360-degree video to be released on Feb. 5 as part of its Super Bowl campaign, which also includes a TV spot showing Brady going about his day from every angle using Intel’s 360 replay technology.

What Brands Need To Do
With 360 video content gaining traction among consumers, it is important for brands to start working closely with content creators to produce engaging and immersive content. The crowdsourcing approach that Intel took helps establish a more intimate connection with the consumers through the personalized experience. Brands wishing to stay ahead of the curve need to take a cue from this initiative and start developing immersive content that can engage their audience in innovative and fun ways.

How We Can Help
Our dedicated team of experts is here to guide marketers through the distribution landscape. We work closely with brands to develop sustainable content strategies to promote branded VR and 360 video content across various apps and platforms. With our proprietary technology stack powered by a combination of best-in-class VR partners and backed by the media fire-power of IPG Mediabrands, we offer customized solutions for distributing and measuring branded VR content that truly enhance brand messaging and contribute to the campaign objectives.

If you’d like to learn more about how the Lab can help you tap into the immersive power of VR content to engage with customers, please contact our Client Services Director Samantha Holland (samantha@ipglab.com) to schedule a visit to the Lab.

 


Source: AdWeek

Facebook To Test Live 360-Degree Video With Nat Geo

What Happened
Live video on Facebook is about to get a lot more immersive as the social network readies the debut of its first live 360-degree video for National Geographic. The nature and travel publisher will publish the first 360 Live video tomorrow at noon on its Facebook Page, documenting in spherical view as scientists emerge from the isolation pods at Utah’s Mars Desert Research Station. Facebook says live 360 broadcasting will be added to Facebook Live’s API later this month as it plans to roll out the capability to all Pages and users next year. Facebook is not the first major platform to combine these two emerging media formats as YouTube introduced its first live 360-degree video in February.

What Brands Should Do
This new feature further improves Facebook’s Live video product and offers content creators and brands a new way to connect with viewers with immersive and real-time content. At a time when many brand advertisers are starting to see the potential of 360-degree video, this move by Facebook should help it attract more experimentations as brands race to incorporate the immersive format into their digital ads. While it will not doubt take more careful planning and robust technical support to pull off, melding live streaming with 360-degree videos should provide brands a chance to connect with customers on a more urgent and interactive way that they should not miss out on.

 


Source: TechCrunch

Facebook Adds 360-Degree Photos & Videos To Instant Articles

What Happened
Facebook continues to improve its mobile-optimized, fast-loading content format Instant Articles as it adds support for 360-degree photos and videos. This means publishers can now include 360-degree content in their Instant Articles, allowing users to navigate by turning their mobile device or by tapping and dragging. Facebook debuted 360-degree videos on its News Feed last year and added support for 360-degree photos this June.

What Brands Should Do
Instant Articles provide a way for brands to make branded content easier to access on Facebook and deliver a superior user experience on mobile. This update enables content creators to incorporate 360-degree content into their Instant Articles and make the mobile experience more interactive and engaging. Brands looking to distribute their branded content on social channels should take a cue and start exploring this publishing program and its ad unit cousin Canvas ads.

 


Source: TechCrunch

REI Leverages 360-Degree Video To Reach Multicultural Audience

What Happened
Outdoor gear retailer REI is leveraging Facebook’s 360-degree videos to reach multicultural Millennials in Austin, Chicago, and Los Angeles. The company teamed up with eight local artists in the three cities to create videos chronicling the creation of their art projects. REI worked with publisher Vix to produce and share the 360-degree videos, which have racked up over 822,000 views on Facebook.

What Brands Need To Do
With 360 video content gaining traction among consumers, it is important for brands to start working closely with content creators to produce engaging and immersive content. The localized approach that REI took helps establish a more intimate connection with the multicultural consumers in each city through the immersive experience. Brands wishing to stay ahead of the curve need to take a cue from this initiative and start developing immersive content that can engage their audience in innovative and fun ways.

 


Source: Digiday

Flipkart Turns Sales Event Into A Facebook Scavenger Hunt With 360-Degree Video

What Happened
Flipkart, the leading ecommerce site in India, found an interesting way to use 360-degree video on Facebook to promote its annual flagship sales event. The company posted a four-minute-long, 360-degree video on its Facebook Page on Wednesday morning, which shows its employees taking a tour around its office. Viewers are encouraged to look around for clues to unlock various deals and offers hidden in each room of the office. Those that share their screenshots in the Facebook video’s comments section will have a chance to win up to 15 digital coupons.

What Brands Should Do
Flipkart’s use of 360-degree video on Facebook shows ingenuity in the way it fully engages with viewers and rewards their engagement with discounts and offers. More brands looking into producing 360-degree videos should take advantage of its innate interactivity to craft a fun brand experience.

 


Source: Digiday

Header image courtesy of Flipkart’s Facebook Video

NYC AdWeek 2016: Circa Plans to Create Weekly Ad-Supported VR Spots

What Happened
On Wednesday at its AdWeek event in New York City, Circa announced an ambitious VR initiative that will have the Millennial-focused news publisher work with production company MomentumXR to create two pieces of ad-supported VR content on a weekly basis. Circa didn’t name any advertisers, but says ads will run as pre-rolls in VR or 360-degree video format. The Sinclair Broadcasting-owned publisher is also open to working with brands to create custom VR clips in the future.

What Brands Should Do
As more and more brand marketers rush into VR to capitalize on the booming popularity of the emerging medium, many fail to come up with a sustainable, long-term VR strategy that fits their brand. Instead, most of them dove into the medium with a one-off piece of VR content, distributed it across all channels regardless of behavioral differences, and just left it at that with no follow-up. To avoid this kind of rather short-sighted approach, brands need to work closely with content creators to develop VR content that truly enhances brand messaging and contributes to the campaign objectives.

If you’d like to talk more about how to develop a long-term VR strategy for your brand, please reach out to our Client Services Director Samantha Holland (samantha@ipglab.com) to schedule a visit to the Lab. If you have yet to experience the true power of an immersive VR experience firsthand, the Lab currently has three VR headsets — an HTC Vive and two Samsung Gear VRs — ready for demos upon request.

 


Source: AdWeek