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Here Are 5 Creative Ways Businesses Are Using Virtual Reality

After many years of false starts, the age of virtual reality looks like it’s finally begun.

As one of the only positives of COVID-19, interest in VR is currently exploding as innovators explore its relevance in all aspects of business and the roles it might play within the realms of customer interaction and experience. The pandemic could finally be responsible for ushering in regular VR use or at the very least give the technology the push it needs towards the mainstream.   

There is an ever-increasing number of industries that are finding new, exciting, and unique ways to use VR to promote and demonstrate their products and services to their potential customers. Virtual reality is one of the most promising enterprise technologies your company can start adopting today to ensure it survives tomorrow and beyond. 

Unique Advertising Experiences

Traditional channels for advertising and marketing methods have become increasingly less convincing over recent years as consumers have learned many of their subtle tricks. As time has gone by, they’ve failed to continue updating to the mentality of their target audiences, who now require more interactive techniques of persuasion.

Enter virtual reality. Advertising and marketing performance can be successfully enhanced with customized virtual reality solutions. Many content creation organizations have adopted VR to increase consumer engagement with their ad content. For example, VR promotional videos shot in 360 degrees to provide people with a virtual and interactive experience.

Virtual Meetings and Collaboration 

Many employees are now familiar with using video chat applications like Zoom to have meetings, especially after working from home during the pandemic. But virtual technology provides an even more inclusive and immersive experience that closely resembles in-person interactions during meetings and collaborations, with the added bonus of whiteboarding, data visualization, and design in 3 dimensions.  

VR-powered businesses that use VR to collaborate during meetings may also experience other benefits beyond immersive collaboration. When disparate teams are unable to be in the same geographical location, they can utilize VR to achieve the same or similar results while also saving on travel expenses and reducing environmental costs. Less travel between physical locations can also increase productivity thanks to reduced stress levels for lower turnover rates and less employee burnout.

Virtual Construction and Open Homes  

Architects and construction companies alike can now empower their businesses thanks to customized VR applications. That’s because they’re able to present VR design ideas for residential and commercial buildings so that their clients can explore building projects and renovation before accepting and beginning the construction process.

All types of construction projects can be visualized in virtual environments which allow every aspect to be examined, from safety precautions to design highlights, which improves overall efficiency. Interior designs can be easily changed in VR to meet the expectations of clients thanks to the experience of virtual walkthroughs of a new home well before it’s been built. Eventually, VR will replace almost all traditional drawings in 2D.

Immersive Staff Training

New employees will always need training, just like current employees will need to update their skills from time to time as new procedures and processes are implemented. VR can be used for company employees as well as students at any education level by providing them simulations of almost any situation for the purpose of training. VR provides them with an immersive and multisensory experience that is quite often even more effective than traditional teaching methods like lectures and textbooks. Trainees and employees alike can immerse themselves in a greater depth of training to demonstrate their mastery. 

Virtual and augmented reality are both gaining momentum in many training programs, especially when it comes to health and medical education as it allows students to utilize 3D programs with holographic anatomy. These programs allow students to see VR cadavers so that they can have a deeper understanding of the human body in real-time, which saves hours of time spent with real cadavers in traditional laboratories.

Augmented Hospitality and Tourism

Virtual reality tours for real-life locations provides an exciting advantage for tourism companies as they can use it to motivate potential visitors with a virtual vacation experience. It can be used to show them specific locations they’re interested in such as landscapes, festivals, and famous landmarks to excite users about booking tickets to these locations.

VR museums are an example of tourism promotion which has become much more normal since COVID-19 hit. There are now many interactive museum tours available in countries all over the globe that decided to provide immersive VR experiences once physical museum visits became unavailable. Hotels and resort chains have also benefited greatly from virtual reality after many of them created virtual experiences for prospective guests. This served to encourage any potential customers to choose to stay at their hotel or resort once the pandemic was over.

The Bottom Line

No matter what anyone tries to tell you, virtual reality technology is here to stay for the long term. VR and AR are transforming how businesses operate, both internally within their organizations as well as externally with their clientele. And those businesses who decide not to embrace this evolving technology will almost certainly find themselves outclassed by their competition. The time has come to explore the new ways in which you can give your audience incredible experiences in the virtual world and really take your business to the next level.

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Written by Luke Fitzpatrick

Luke Fitzpatrick is an academic speaker at Sydney University. He enjoys writing about tech, productivity, lifestyle, and is a contributor to Forbes.

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