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360° media: opening up possibility
March 20, 2017 | Chris Stoltz

“You had to be there.” It’s a common comment after someone shares photos from their trip to the Grand Canyon, New York City or the Himalayas. It’s just hard to replace the experience of those amazing environments surrounding you. However, 360° photos, videos and street views can take you one step closer to being there.

The key phrase is, “amazing environments surrounding you.” 360° media capture an entire location instead of a small snippet. And they allow the audience to control what they see, just as if they were there in person. People want to explore an entire environment. What’s to the left in that valley? What’s behind me, across the street? What’s going on over there? With 360°, you can see it all.

How brands are using 360° media

As a marketer, there are a lot of ways to take advantage of this new technology. It helps to be inspired by what others are doing. Here are just a few.

Explore and experience

Perhaps a high school student is looking at colleges, and is curious what it’s like at Stanford University. Now, they can “walk” the quad, with the Google Street View Stanford developed of its campus here. Maybe a couple is wondering where to go on their next vacation. They could explore Italy’s oldest amusement park, Gardaland. Or sacred grounds in Indonesia. Or a European winter resort. Or maybe a kid wants to check out a video game. You could create a 3D video experience inside the game, like Clash of Clans.

You could even share what it’s like to see, say, Paul McCartney in concert.

Or share the Colorado Rockies life of a Mercedes owner.

Informational

Consumers always want more information to make better purchasing decisions. Maybe they missed your trade show, but still want information about your products. Adura Luxury Flooring recreated their trade booth, complete with clickable information.

Another example is Marimekko in Palo Alto, which recreated its store online. For someone who can’t make it to your business location, this is a great way to get a sense of what’s available.

Finally, take a look at this 360° experience of an apartment complex called College Station. This gives prospective renters an idea of what life would be like here.

Entertainment and storytelling

Sometimes you just want to create a fun experience for consumers. Imagine how deeply interested Star Wars fans would be in moving around inside this Star Wars scene?

Or how much soccer fans would love to be inside a pro soccer locker room at halftime?

Mini even went as far as creating a 360° movie series that puts you inside the scenes.

You can even get conceptual with 360°, like the Salvation Army.

Endless possibility

The ways that you can use this technology to build your brand are endless, from sharing behind-the-scenes photos and videos on social media to creating a tutorial or content for magazine article features. Show the view from a seat in your stadium. Help people find your business. Share what’s unique about your city. Place people inside a product release event. Show your product in use and at its best. Share student experiences. Share the lives of animals in your zoo.

The only limit is your imagination!

 

 

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