Tuesday, 01 August 2017 07:00

What VR Gaming Can Teach Marketers About Storytelling

Hey there folks, it’s Amanda for my last care package of knowledge from SXSW.

I was determined to get the best storytelling advice and was thrilled to discover a session in gaming about VR storytelling. I was eager to learn how gamers were using virtual reality as gaming is one of the purest forms of storytelling. 

Video games started simply enough with Pong in 1972 and has morphed into video games winning awards for storyline and dialogue.

This was proven true by Uncharted 4 : A Thief’s End at the 2017 SXSW Gaming Awards.  Clearly these video game designers are up to something so I attended their session with no expectations.

I was blown away by the elements from video game design that need to be applied to digital marketing storytelling. 

Virtual Reality Gaming and Storytelling

Below I share how VR gaming can help you tell a better story.

Experience matters

Stories give people the ability to get lost, even for just a moment.

A story is shared to get the listener to feel like they are there, like they were apart of the story. The goal is to get them to experience the story as you felt it.

What experience do you want your story to leave behind? 

Creators are creating connections (between characters & human beings)

Progressive and Geico commercials are examples of the connections between the character of a story and the viewers.

Your story should include a character or creature your audience can create a connection with. 

Core human aspects

Video games allow users to escape into a fantasy world but still have human aspects. They still want to eat and communicate with people.

Your story should be too far removed from the human experience, it can be humorous or satirical but stay true to core human aspects. 

Don’t bring out the darkness out

Emotions are powerful and convert but be weary of using sadness, pity, or anger emotions.

You don’t want your story to unknowingly trigger your audience in a poor way.

Be mindful of your story and elements might trigger others. This is especially true for animal rights, human trafficking, or domestic violence causes. 

Model a house party

Stay with me here, you go to a house party and you’ve got a host who greets you, provides you with drinks or food, introduces you to another friend and before you know it the party's over.

Your story should move through that same process, leaving viewers not ready to leave and eager to attend the next party. 

Virtual Reality and Gaming

Built in customer service

In this digital age customer service is key and your story should include it.

You can add an element of customer service by asking questions within your story or inviting people to comment. Live Q & A’s are an excellent way to weave customer service into your story. 

Future thinking

360 degree video, virtual and augmented reality are the future and it’s important to be aware of trends.

People are starting to expect more and want to be able to use their senses.

Be mindful of how your story can change and adapt as technology continues to change and adapt.

Checkout my other post from this year’s SXSW 2017:

Need help with telling the story of your business in an effective way?

Contact our marketing team and learn how we can help you.

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Amanda Nelson

Amanda Nelson is a social media expert, video enthusiast, and entrepreneur. Amanda founded Jupiter Production House in 2014 to offer full-service video production and social media support to nonprofits & purpose driven companies. She has over 10 years’ experience in social media and public relations at TEDx America’s Finest City, SDX - San Diego Ad Club, Sundance Film Festival and the American Film Institute Film Festival. She was nominated for 2016 Women Who Mean Business Awards and speaks regularly on the power of social video storytelling.

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