Steal these insanely creative marketing ideas to stand out from the crowd.
The truth is that most marketing and promotion doesn’t work if it isn’t stunning or original.
Take paid display ads, for instance: only 0.6% of us will actually click on them (and that’s according to Google, who has a lot of skin in the game). And when it comes to sponsor content, I know I’m not the only one who keeps on scrolling. Simply put, most ads are played out, and we’d rather stare at a brick wall or a muted screen than be barraged by them.
On the other hand, creative ads that manage to stand out can be wildly effective — like the last SuperBowl’s Tide Ad which had the internet raving.
I’ve written about how VR is very likely to revolutionize marketing, so, in this article, I’d like to share some great campaigns that will inspire you to create ads that deliver. (Even if you aren’t using VR yet, there are some takeaways and plenty of inspiration ahead.)
1. New York Times — VR straight to your doorstep
Virtual reality is a stunning way to tell (and experience) stories. However, there’s plenty of people who don’t own VR equipment, or assume it’s insanely expensive to buy.
The New York Times, which produces breathtaking VR journalism, solved the issue by shipping Google Cardboard goggles (try saying that 5 times fast) to its subscribers. The cardboard product (which costs around $10) allowed anyone to see the NYT’s VR through their smartphone, and it greatly boosted the demand and audience for their VR journalism.
NYT’s brilliant idea just goes to show the major impact that a convenient delivery of emotions can have for your business.
2. Virtual Reality Merchandise by KAUST Museum
VR is making splashes in the art world, and it’s not limited to the art itself.
Look no further than The KAUST Museum. Since it’s located in Saudi Arabia, it’s quite a trek for me to visit (along with other Americans). Fortunately, if you aren’t able to make the flight, you can get your hands on their “Viewseum” — an all-in-one VR kit that lets you explore the museum from your couch. Even better, those who visited the museums and bought the product as a gift became ambassadors and advocates for the museum.
Takeaway: Even if you aren’t doing VR, consider a giveaway that’s tied to your brand — it will transform your customers into evangelists.
3. Volvo — “Drive” a Car From Your Living Room
Most of us want to drive, feel and experience a car first-hand before buying it. However, if you’re anything like me, you also don’t want to spend your limited spare time dealing with car salespeople.
Look no further than Volvo’s recent campaign, which allows you to “drive” the car using your smartphone and Google Carboard. When they used it for their Volvo V40 model, it sold out within just 2 days.
Icons (the smell, taste, or general experiences) behind your brand have been proven to strongly drive purchasing decisions. Think: the smell of McDonald’s fries. If you can find a way to deliver this to customers, you’ll have a million-dollar idea.
4. TOMS — see your philanthropy in action
TOMS is famous for its mission to match customers’ shoe purchases with a giveaway to a child in need. It’s not only just plain good for humanity, but also a strong emotional marketing tool. They supercharged the impact on both sides by rolling out VR experiences that actually showed where the matched shoe pairs went, and how they helped local communities.
TOMS founder Blake Mycoskie said this delivered troves of positive acclaim from customers, and that it would play a big role in the communication going forward.
As Vrse’s Chris Milk explained in his TED Talk, VR can be the “ultimate empathy machine.” And empathy (when used ethically and correctly) is one of the ultimate marketing and business tools. If you don’t have a meaning, story, and mission behind your brand, who is going to care?
5. British Columbia — Virtual Tourism on Steroids
We’re living an experience economy — where people value events and sharing them (even more than the products themselves). So it’s no small wonder that VR is being used as a powerful tool to sell through this method.
British Columbia took advantage by allowing potential tourists to experience their natural wonders from home in an immersive way (and share the experience with friends). And it skyrocketed tourism as a result. Check it out for yourself here.
Want to supercharge your business? Create a similar experience that bridges the gap between apprehension and buying through an immersive and emotional tool.
The bottom line: These examples go to show that creative and emotional marketing can have a major impact. When it comes to marketing yourself, don’t be afraid to step outside the box; the results might amaze you.