Thursday, August 9, 2007

Second Life Citroën

I wonder if Citroën would find new buyers with this movie, or even with the presence on Second Life.

We see more and more RL companies coming to second life. So they must have seen some potential in the residents. But the question is, are you looking for those kind of commercials? Is this what you are looking for in SL? I don't think so. This discussion has been made several times, and yet, the companies still find their way to the grid, and think therefore that it has some commercial impact on our (2nd) lives. I would like you to comment what are your thoughts on RL companies coming to SL, and using SL for commercial advertising.


Veronique Kaminski said...

Well, I think it is a necessary evil we will have to live with.
Necessary? Yes, especially for people like you, and me, Looker. Non-premium account members.
Because, even if we accept the very hypothetical assumption that Linden Labs is running SL only for the love for virtual worlds,
(and doesnt want to make any profit..) still there are some bills to pay. And behind each Linden, despites the fact they consider themselves as untouchable gods, there is a real person that needs real cash to provide for his real needs..
And this will not be covered by freeloaders like us.. So yes, let these RL firms and their currency pour in, so that we can continue with our lifes..

The big problem is however that most of the RL companies that enter SL, dont have a clue what SL is all about.
OK, I am sure they hire people, or contact companies who really know the "technical" aspects of SL and created a goodlooking sim for them. But there it stops.
Then its in the hands again of the companies marketing or PR division, or the advertising agency that runs the show for them. And, what we see most times, it is handled just like a classic one shot advertisement campaign.
There is first a big buzz creation (previews, rumors in classic media..), a big press release + official opening event, and then... it stays static for ever and dies a slow death. You vistited a good example lately Looker.. the Playboy sim..
Many times a launch in SL is just a (small) part of a RL campaign, it doesnt have a raison dêtre on its own.. Its just included in the whole campaign because SL is a hot topic..
What seems that still isnt understood by all this companies who want to be present in-world is: this thing is called Second LIFE. And life is to be lived.. on a regular basis. And life changes every second, life is changing...
a dynamic reaction on a variety of impulses..
Even more in SL then in RL, where the pace is a lot higher, and many are there to explore some new things, or seek some thrills they are lacking in daily life..

So I think that the only way a RL company can give a valuable contribution to SL (besides of paying LL's bills), is by really participating. Which means: not only invest in a nice looking Sim, but also have some enthousiast avs in it that keep it alive.
Because that is the clue of it all. It are both the avs that run and come to a SIM that make it worthwhile.
A good example: our beloved Paradise Lost. Once a vibrant club,.. but lately, with the BossLady and driving force Helena that went poof, and many of the once active members/community builders busy with other things (life is about changing...)..
You know the result.. I think it was even on one of your post that I saw it being renamed in "Paradise Void"...
However, if some enthousiast decide to invest some time and efforts in it, like Vint and Veyron did some days ago.., a sim can become alive and kicking again just like that.. ** me snaps fingers**
But.. which RL company is prepared to pay a RL salary to an employe, just for "playing" SL, and staying devoted to it..?
Because that is what we are talking about here, enthousiasts, not just a helpdesk employe who is there only to answer some questions an to give some info about whatever the company sells. (like some banks that are in-world seem to do..)
What they need are people who love SL, who live SL, and that are devoted to it and the SIM they are working for..

Al these firms are not really to blame of course. First of all SL is a quiet new phenomenon, so I dont think there are allready that many profound and statistically representative marketing studies about it.
Even LL doesnt give good figures on how many (unique) users are really active in SL on a regular basis.
So how are they to know what public is there to adress, when and where? With what (cultural) background, and why are they in SL..
With so many unclear parameters on their target group, (which is in reality probably limited to only a couple of hundreds or thousends),and still a lot of rather negatif SL coverage by the media, me too I would be reluctant about getting involved to much.. (if I were a company owner that is..)
Even, if you see how companies represent themselves on the "classic" internet, which is now around for what, about 10 years? (I am talking www here..)
Many webpages are still not much more then an electronic version of their products catalog. So, if they by now still dont see the posibilities of the web, how can you expect them to dig SL?

On the other hand.. who wants to miss the boat that sets sail to a bright new horizon?

PS : no, I am not solliciting for a full SL dayjob.. a couple of hours now and then are sufficient.. I still want to ejoy the real sun.. :-)

Looker Lumet said...

Waw, veronique, That is not a comment, that is a whole blogpost. That doesn't belong here, that should be on the front page.
But you have put here a quiet remarkable view on this item, and the thing is, it is the truth. It is indeed the very and only reason why most of RL companies start in SL, with exception of few. And it is up to those real life companies what they are intend to do with their creation in SL.
I think it is in their interest to find people who will live in SL, so play the "game", make friends, just as we do, but in the back of their head thinking about bussiness.
I know some companies, or let's say, some avatars, who are playing the "game", but in fact, trying to take commercial advantage out of their presence in SL, which doesn't bother me at all. On the contrary, I think that is the way to do it. Make yourself popular in SL, and then use your popularity to organise events where a lot of people would attend, not only for the interest of the event, but also as a frienship to that avatar. Of course we are not talking about events of thousands of avatars, but bloggers, like me, will eventually write about that event, and the word is spread.
Who posted the YouTube movie of Citroën? Yes indeed, me, and not only me.
But thanks Veronique for your very well written comment on this post. I really appreciate this.