Person with VR headset

What is (VR) Virtual Reality Advertising?

Marketers and advertisers are always looking for the newest and coolest ways to show off their products. To achieve this, virtual reality advertising is one of the up and coming trends for companies worldwide. By 2024, the market for VR is expected to exceed 12 billion USD, with marketing and advertising professionals expected to take advantage of this growth. Companies like Meta are largely responsible for the exponential growth of virtual reality advertising, and it will be exciting to see how companies take advantage of this advanced technology. Keep reading to find out how advertising will be impacted by the exploding virtual reality market.

What is Virtual Reality?

Virtual reality, often referred to as VR, is the process of immersing yourself in a simulated environment with the help of advanced technology. Instead of users traditionally viewing a screen, they are transported to a simulated environment where they can interact with their surroundings. Often when we think of VR, we think of video games or other activities that are purely for fun. Over the last few years we have seen VR introduced to marketing and advertising industries in order to drive impressive levels of awareness and interest. VR advertising tends to be pretty pricey, but if done right, can drive a very impressive return on investment. 

Virtual Reality vs Augmented Reality

Augmented reality, AR, commonly gets confused with VR. But, there is a big difference between the two. While VR immerses you in a simulated environment, AR simply displays an image, product, or other object in the real world. With VR, you have to wear a funky looking headset that will bring the simulated world to life. On the other hand, AR will display objects that are not really there into the real world. As an example, you can see if a chair would fit in your living room. A few years ago, the phone app Pokemon Go was one of the most popular forms of AR. VR and AR both have pros and cons, but it’s important to understand the differences when focusing on how to advertise.

Facebook / Meta

On October 28th, 2021, Mark Zuckerburg announced that Facebook is rebranding, taking on the new name “Meta Platform Inc.” or “Meta” for short. Meta claims that they are moving past 2D screens, into 3D experiences. This idea will bring the new age of social technology and bring people from all over the world together. While Meta builds out how they are exactly going to achieve this and make it accessible for everyone, marketers and advertisers alike are thinking about how they will be able to use it to their advantage. While most of us are still pretty new to the idea of using virtual reality advertising, we can expect some big changes coming soon. 

Horizon Workrooms

Horizon Workrooms by Meta is one of the newest forms of VR, focused on bringing colleagues together. Since early 2020, there has been a boom in employees working from home. Working from home has been a great asset for a lot of companies, allowing them to save money on renting an office space, and allowing employees to save time and money that accompanies commuting. But, we can’t ignore the lack of personalization and collaboration that it brings along with it. With Horizon Workrooms, you are able to join colleagues from all over the world. It encourages collaboration and makes meetings easier, but you’re still able to stay home with your dog and sweatpants. Meta states that they have been using Horizon Workrooms for months now, and they have received positive feedback. With this technology, we can only imagine how we will be able to conduct sales demos, meetings with clients, and complete other important tasks from the comfort of your couch.

Virtual Reality Advertising Examples

The potential for virtual reality advertising is limitless. While VR advertising is still relatively new, we have already seen companies exploring it. Since VR is so immersive, you can generate extremely high-quality impressions while enforcing brand recognition. Because of this, the future of VR advertising is bright, and may even outperform social media advertising in the future with the removal of 3rd party cookies. Below we are going to go through some of the most popular VR advertising trends and how it impacts both the consumer and the company.

Advertising Within Video Games and Apps

Similar to advertising within experiences below, using adrillo you also have the ability to advertise within video games and apps. Generally, video game and app users make up a specific target market, perfect for advertisers who meet what they are interested in. Advertising in video games and apps is not a new concept, if you’ve ever played a video game or phone game, I’m sure you have seen a few ads in them. In the video game, if you run out of money, lives, or other resources, you can show them a personalized advertisement in exchange for the resource they’re missing out on. This is a win-win because you can advertise to them and they get an immediate reward. At adrillo, we’re launching the first virtual reality advertising network, where publishers and advertisers combine to advertise in the virtual world. Get in front of the millions of VR users today by signing up for adrillo. 

Advertising Within Experiences

Every day we see ads displayed on billboards, signs, and other displays. If people are spending time in virtual reality, it only makes sense to target them where they are spending a large portion of time. This is a great opportunity to target a very specific audience who are participating in a certain experience. Continuing on with the virtual travel agency idea, restaurants are able to sponsor the agency and have their food served within the experience. When the user removes their VR headset, they won’t be able to stop thinking about the delicious looking burger they were served on the beach. Companies like Uber Eats and DoorDash are expected to collaborate with VR companies to bring this idea to life.

Real Estate

Currently, real estate companies are using VR to give tours of new listings. These virtual tours can be viewed on your phone, giving you the opportunity to move through the listing as if you were really there with a 360 degree video. Taking it one step further, if you wear a VR headset, you can fully immerse yourself in the listing. With the housing market booming, this is a great way to send many prospective buyers a listing, without requiring them to visit the actual location of the house, apartment, or other buildings. By wearing a VR headset, clients can measure rooms, see where the sun hits at a specific time of the day, or even visualize what the backyard would look like in the summer versus the winter. The options are truly limitless when it comes to VR use in real estate, and will help agents not only manage their clients but provide them with a one-of-a-kind experience. 

“In-Store” Shopping

In-store shopping has greatly decreased in popularity over the last few years. This is because of the ease of online shopping, especially with companies like Amazon making it easier than ever to shop virtually. But, you can’t buy everything online. Industries like vehicles, wedding, landscaping, and others that focus on big ticket items can have a hard time selling online. But, with the introduction of VR shopping, consumers are now able to take a closer look at these products and will have an easier time ordering online rather than visiting a physical store. By giving people more accessibility to shop, sales are expected to increase. Offer your VR customers exclusive discounts to encourage them to spend more. 

VR Trade Shows

Trade shows are one of the best ways to advertise for B2B companies. You are able to get your company in front of potentially thousands of leads. But, trade shows are expensive to attend for both your company and for leads. With the introduction of VR trade shows, the list of people that are able to attend expands globally. Before, if a trade show was in California, there’s a good chance that most attendees would reside in the US. With VR trade shows, you open the attendee list to people across the world. This can double or even triple the amount of leads that you generate from the trade show. Plus, you can use tech to your advantage and have an impressive booth that will be sure to entice those prospects. You might think that opening a trade show up to worldwide attendees might not work due to language barriers, time zones, and other considerations. But, you can also have hosts that are located globally to handle these considerations. 

Virtual Travel Agencies

Not everyone is able to, wants to, or can afford to take a vacation. By wearing your handy dandy VR headset, you can be transported anywhere in the world within seconds. And, you don’t have to worry about going through the hassle of taking a flight. This opens up so many possibilities for VR travel agencies that can organize and enhance your virtual traveling experience, as well as companies that want to advertise within the travel experience. 

VR Advertising for Game and APP Publishers

The current environment for VR games and apps consists mostly of ones you have to pay up front for, with very few free/freemium available. This is caused by the fact that there is currently no VR ad network available for publishers to monetize their work using advertisements. It’s a natural progression as the VR ecosystem gets more mature for publishers to want to build more free/freemium. So, at adrillo we are making that possible by building the first VR ad network, allowing publishers to monetize their work and advertisers to reach people through a new channel.

How to Get Started

Without a doubt, VR advertising is enticing. But, it can be very expensive to purchase the tech, learn how to use it, and create a virtual experience without help. If this is your first time with VR, I recommend contacting our team at adrillo who specialize in creating these types of experiences and advertisements. This way you can get help building the experience and optimizing it to drive ROI. 

Final Thoughts

Virtual reality advertising is a unique and creative way to impress your prospective clients. You are able to meet with them virtually, show off your product, and provide them a one-of-a-kind experience. If you are able to start advertising with VR before your competitors, this can give you an amazing advantage and help you differentiate. Join the adrillo waitlist today to take advantage of VR advertising.