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What Do We Mean?: 360° Content and How it Provides Context

360 and VR add context

You’ve heard us say it before, the coming of 360° content provides us context that 2D content has never provided. In one of our previous posts, we even defined what context is for you. And just to jog your memory, context is (according to Dictionary.com), “the set of circumstances or facts that surround a particular event, situation, etc.” In other words, context provides us the whole picture – no limits.

To further explain what that means, let me give you an example. Let’s say you posted a picture of yourself in social media with the infamous red Solo cup, complete with the caption, “What a WILD party!” It just so happened that when you posted this, it was a work night. Your boss sees it on your profile and he doesn’t like it because he thinks you’re partying hard on a work night, which could have a negative impact on your work the next day.

But what if your boss totally missed the context? What if he didn’t know that this party you were at was actually your niece’s birthday party and that around you, there are actually kids holding similar red Solo cups all filled with juice? That totally changes the story doesn’t it? And that’s exactly what I’m trying to point out! 2D content lacks the context that we get from 360° content. It gives us the whole story and literally, the complete picture of what’s going on around us.

But then you might ask, what’s the big deal? What’s so important about 360° content and being able to get context? Sure, I get that it provides a bigger field of view, but how else can I benefit from it aside from avoiding misinterpretations? If you think about it, with the advent of 360° content, the way we consume and present information and data is changing. Journalists can significantly enhance how they cover the news and provide audiences with a more complete perspective and physical view of the stories they tell. This can foster stronger feelings of empathy and more importantly help drive change. Imagine what it could do for charities and their ability to fundraise.

360 VR ads give context

Marketers and advertisers can use 360° content to give better context as to what their product really looks like and does. Just think about the industries of tourism and real estate. With 360° images and videos of hotels and guest rooms, travelers will no longer be disappointed when they open that hotel room door and realize that their room mirrors how it was represented in a 360° ad. Home buyers can “walk” through a property before even leaving home. A consumer goods brand can more completely and accurately display where, when and how their product is best experienced.

Manufacturers of large and heavy machinery can use 360° images and video to provide clients and prospects with a comprehensive view of their facilities and products that would otherwise be nearly impossible to grasp without a visit to the plant. Dozens of other product categories and thousands of brands can also leverage this new content format to forge stronger bonds with their target audience. In the end, what is perhaps most important is that with 360° the consumer is given control to engage and interact with content like never before. Thus, it has the potential to be a pivotal tool that translates into driving more conversions and ultimately revenues.

One thing is definitely certain, the new opportunities and benefits that 360° content will bring about are too many to count and it’s exciting to be working in the thick of it and contributing to how the category develops. It’s amazing to think of how 360° content can change the way we perceive and do things. It has the power to alter our perspective on certain matters when we are exposed to the complete context of what’s going on. I suppose 360° content will now help us fully understand what it really means when we say, “Context is key.” And now the red Solo cup holding employee can confidently say to her boss, “You took the red cup out of context, boss, and made an assumption, and we all know what happens to you and me when we assume!”

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