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  • Garrett Pilgrim

360 Video and VR: The New Reality

Technology stops for no one. As communication professionals, we must move with technology and learn new methods of communications. One of the breakout technologies is virtual reality.

Alongside virtual reality (VR) is the emergence of 360 video. Facebook has been one of the leaders in 360 content along with YouTube. Advertisers have started using this VR experience to communicate persuasive messaging. Journalists have used it to report on historic events like the inauguration. We must know how to use and interact with 360 video as communication continues to become more visual.

What is 360 video?

360 video is similar to traditional video, but with the capability to immerse users in an experience. Users can move the image around to view all surroundings. The best way to understand 360 video is to watch it for yourself. Check out National Geographic’s scuba diving excursion to immerse yourself in the experience.

Why should I use 360 video?

360 video presents a new way to get your message out. Whether you are reporting or persuading, you can grasp attention. Use 360 video early while it’s unique enough to just use the new form of communication. After a while, consumers will expect grandiose stories and visuals from 360 video. For now, it’s cool enough that it’s 360 degrees (although Star Wars went to another level with this ad).

How should I use 360 video?

Visual media is about storytelling. 360 video is no different. The overall purposes and messages will not change much, but the way the story is presented will change. Instead of showing one perspective to the story, we now need to include multiple angles, both visual and story wise. Consumers are able to interact with content visually and physically by choosing what angles to view by physically moving around. We now need to consider how to optimize consumers interaction with video to create a better experience.

Will 360 video be the next “big thing?”

It could be the next major development in communication, but don’t get caught up solely in 360 video. Pay attention to drone use such as drone journalism and don’t forget about forms consumers expect such as traditional video, photos, and graphics.

Read more about the future of social media and visual media here.

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