360-degree videos are an exciting way to grab the attention of your audience. The experiential quality allows businesses and influencers to provide additional value to viewers. Although 360-degree video has been around for a number years, it’s been hard for viewers to consume until recently. Now, though, new technologies and media are making viewing 360-degree content as simple as viewing traditional video.
360-degree video virtually transports people firsthand into a new place and experience. This basic form of virtual reality builds an immersive “teleporter” that allows viewers to follow filmmakers wherever they go.
But despite the glamor of 360-degree video, these films need to be created and shared strategically. The process of creation can be a huge undertaking, so you want to ensure that you build it in a way that will ensure a strong ROI.
There are three key components to creating a successful 360-degree video campaign.
1. Know your purpose for using 360.
Why are you creating and sharing a 360-degree video? The content of the video should support the medium. 360-degree video builds a fully immersive experience. In this way, most 360-degree videos show travel or unique experiences that are best lived rather than seen. If you are going to use 360-degree video, the storyboard should call for that “lived immersion.”
For businesses, this usually means creating an experience around the product or service. You can show the lifestyle of your brand firsthand. A real estate agent can show the interior of the apartment and the surrounding area in 360-degree views. A motorcycle company can demonstrate what it feels like to look around as you’re driving down route 1 on your new bike.
The purpose is to provide a unique experience that will show your product or service in use in its best form.
Take, for example, this 360-degree experience of a Six Flags roller coaster. The ability to look around gives you a deeper sense of the “rush” of a roller coaster, making you instantly want to buy a ticket to Six Flags:
Another common purpose for 360-degree viewing is showcasing events. If you are hosting some sort of event, you can use 360 video to capture the exact feeling and experience of the function. For people who couldn’t get tickets or who live across the world, they can later watch that 360-degree video and feel like they were there. This helps to build a global community behind your brand while increasing the visibility and reach of your events.
For example, it’s common now for red carpet events to have livestreaming 360-degree so viewers can feel they are attending the prestigious event firsthand. Check out this SNL scene in 360-degrees, where you feel just like you’re part of the audience, no matter where you live:
Ultimately, 360-degree video puts the viewer in the scene. It’s more than just a video they watch. It becomes an immersive experience with your brand that remains in the memory portion of their mind.
They’re more likely to recall your marketing and branding if you offer a unique, firsthand experience.
2. Create a focal point.
The purpose and storyboard will tell you what your 360-degree video will focus on. You don’t want to use 360-degree technology just to show off a conference room. You want to exhibit a unique setting that has a singular focal point that will grab the attention of the viewer.
You should still provide some single point of focus while you tell a story and grab the viewer’s attention. The rest of the setting should then add to the effect of that one focal point and story.
The goal of 360-video is to put the experience in the viewer’s control, while still directing them gently to a specific point of value you want to provide.
This is especially important due to the novelty of 360-degree videos. People still get distracted by the fact that they can look around in the videos, controlling where they look as the camera rolls. Oftentimes, they’ll be playing with the angles of the camera rather than focusing on your content. In this way, you need to make the setting highly interesting with a defined story to provide a unique and valuable experience.
Take this cooking competition for example. You can see all of the mayhem of the kitchen at once, but you’re drawn to one specific speaker or event at a time. This puts you right in the action, while still ensuring you get the value that the team wants to share with you:
Not all platforms can accommodate 360-degree viewing yet. YouTube, Facebook, and Google Cardboard are the main media for 360 content. These platforms have made it easy to upload and watch this sort of virtual reality.
When choosing how to share your 360-degree video, you want to consider where your target audience spends the majority of their time online. Are they on Facebook or YouTube? Are they seeing your videos on your website, on their friend’s posts, or embedded in your blogs?
You should also consider on what device they might be viewing your video. Generally, 360-degree videos are more fun to watch on a phone or tablet, as these create a more interactive experience.
Ultimately, you want to share on a strategic platform in a way that will optimize the viewing experience for your consumers.
360-degree spherical video is becoming more commonplace and easier to create. Nevertheless, the editing process can be complicated, and quality 360-degree equipment can still be on the pricier side. Moreover, it can be challenging to balance the technicalities of shooting 360-degree video while aligning with backdrop, storyboards, focal points, and marketing techniques.
Still, one of the best parts of 360-degree video is its novelty. There are no “rules” yet. Creation is wide open and new genres will emerge with this new consumption of content.
The future is exciting for experiential video.
Even if you don’t know how to utilize 360-degree video, you can still offer a stunning, attention-grabbing experience to your customers.
Contact True Film Production to learn about our live action and animated films that will create a unique, immersive experience for your target audience.
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