Storytelling is an art form that’s existed since the beginning. It’s used to entertain, to preserve posterity and to have a say in how other people and the world perceive us. It shouldn’t come as a surprise, then, that businesses have their own story to share, too.
Every retailer needs to be in control of its own story. A poorly told one will harm consumer engagement, brand loyalty and, most importantly, sales.
In an increasingly saturated and competitive market, if there’s an advantage one can take to reach pole position in the never-ending retail race, the time to take it should always be now.
Virtual reality is that advantage. It’s enabling retailers to provide a new and immersive way to tell their stories and for people to browse and buy their products. But not just that. VR is giving consumers a never-before-seen inside look at a company’s supply chain and manufacturing processes.
Read on to learn the three key reasons why retail and VR go hand in hand for storytelling.
Like e-commerce, virtual reality provides a global platform that isn’t limited by geographical restrictions. But what sets the two technologies apart, though, is that VR allows shoppers to visit a store regardless of location.
Virtual showrooms and stores offer a sense of interactivity and presence that websites simply can’t compete with. And let’s be honest, a section of a website titled ‘Our Values’ is less likely to impact storytelling than a virtual world, where everything from the shopping experience to your story can be coalesced into one exciting, interactive journey.
Picture this. You’re a cosmetics company, focusing entirely on ethically sourced, ethically produced products. You’re proud of it. Who wouldn’t be?
Now, you want your buyers to be as excited about that as you are; to develop an emotional connection to your brand based on trust and transparency. Virtual showrooms allow you to open up your store in a way that wasn’t possible before.
You have the opportunity to prove your commitment to ethical products by taking customers on an immersive tour — one that lets them explore the origins of your raw materials and learn about fair trade practices.
VR is liberating retailers from the constraints that come attached to physical spaces. Put it this way: it’s much easier to design a virtual showroom to reflect your brand’s story than it is a brick-and-mortar location.
You can devote whole spaces of a digital world to what makes your company and its products so important. Adapting the environment to reflect new chapters in your journey is quick and easy. And it’s cheap, too, since there’s no need to ever purchase physical materials.
VR is emerging as a Swiss Army knife of industry. As the world opens up to new technologies, it’s a multi-faceted tool that’s set to repair, improve and protect businesses against weathering and obsolescence.
We’re already seeing top retailers like NIKE using VR to tell the journey behind its supply chain and how its shoes are made. The list of companies recognizing the efficacy that VR has on storytelling can only grow.
As with everything, it’s better to get in on the ground floor and snatch up the advantage of doing so. The retailers that use VR now are doing exactly that.