Whether battling zombies, engaging in space exploration, or racing an awesome set of wheels, it’s no secret that virtual reality delivers the next best experience to actually being there and doing it yourself. VR games exist for an exciting array of genres and the list is ever-expanding. Each new game released helps to build momentum, unlocking new possibilities for VR across the board.
But beyond all of the running, driving, and shooting, there is another breed of VR on the horizon. Big brands are leveraging VR technology to create multisensory experiences for their customers, strengthening the company-to-customer relationship and broadening perspectives. Corporations have already leveled up their marketing efforts to embrace VR, including IKEA, Red Bull, Volvo, Nike, and Marriott, among others. Here are a few highlights.
Remodel a Kitchen with IKEA’s VR Game
IKEA offers some pretty neat options for home organization and design, but one of their latest offerings comes in the form of the brand’s pilot virtual reality app, the IKEA VR Experience. Through the HTC Vive headset running this application, users can explore three kitchens styled differently with the ability to explore and customize. Users can move around the kitchen, viewing the room from different perspectives, stretching to a 6.4-foot adult or shrinking down to a 3.3-foot child, potentially unlocking design flaws and solutions. Users may also use the app to update the color of the cabinets and drawers for an alternate look.
With the launch of their app, IKEA has smartly recognized the potential VR has in helping customers to make shopping decisions. In the very near future, VR may also play a key role in helping brands to understand what their customers really want.
Take in the Exhilaration of Extreme Flying Races with Red Bull
The Red Bull Air Race World Championship app creatively matches the energy levels of its key product offerings. The brand banks on the high octane thrills of flying in its “fully immersive” VR game. Compatible with Oculus Rift, Air Race puts you on the path of key flight racetracks around the world, enlivened by full stereoscopic 3-D viewing. Development of this VR experience goes hand-in-hand with high resolution 3D LiDAR data scans and satellite imagery as well as insight from Air Race champion Paul Bonhomme, who ensured a realistic flight path within six inches of true accuracy.
The air race plays upon the excitement of Red Bull’s international air race series, established in 2003, which features timed air races through challenging courses laden with obstacles. With marketing brilliantly in mind, the VR experienced is effectively packed into a marketing stand deployable at key Red Bull events worldwide.
Get Closer to that Vacation State of Mind with Marriott
Marriott Hotels took room service to a new level with a cutting-edge virtual reality travel experience through its VRoom Service app. When staying at the New York Marriott Marquis and London Marriott Park Lane properties during a pilot period last year, guests were able to request a Samsung Gear VR headset and accompanying headphones, on loan for up to 24-hours. During that time, they could enjoy virtual reality at its best right in the comforts of their rooms. Accessible on Samsung’s Milk VR, Marriott’s VR Postcards offer another VR travel experience brimming with unique destinations across the globe told through the eyes of actual travelers, helping users to expand their minds to the possibilities for future travel, and if nothing more, to discover new horizons.
So what do a furniture retailer, energy drink label, car manufacturer, and a hotel chain have in common? They’ve cleverly recognized one impressive way to get closer to their customers, inspiring new experiences and triggering a more emotional response to their offerings through the power of VR.