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Virtual Reality Case Study: Daily Mail Australia

Virtual Reality Case Study

Daily Mail Australia know their audience deeply, a large part of this audience so happens to be Generation Z. Gen Zer’s are those born between 1997 through to 2012.

The event was called “Spilling the Tea on Gen Z” and attendees were leading media agencies in Brisbane, Melbourne, and Sydney. We will outline some of the problems we had to solve and at a high level how we put this fantastic experience together.

You can read a little more about this event here after it was featured on Bandt!

We teamed up with LuminarVR and got to work in creating a shot-list of the experience and also creating the character that would star. Her name is Lexi and she is around 22 years of age.

We had to decide what Headset would suit this experience and audience. We decided on the Oculus Go headset, 30 of them actually! It is a great headset for this kind of experience, comfortable and very simple for those unfamiliar with Virtual Reality to put on and use.

The next step was creating the 2 separate parts of the experience before integrating both of them together.

The first part was the phone footage, this was key to showing how Lexi interacted with her friends, Brands, and Advertising on her phone and across many Social Media Channels.

The social channels that we featured on the phone were Snapchat, Facebook, Youtube, Text Messaging and Instagram. We used a combination of images and Video of screen recordings to put this phone footage together.

We also had a challenge of how to show the viewers that Lexi was stopped from clicking “Skip Ad” on a Youtube video. The solution was quite simple but super effective, we created a transparent blue thumbprint that moved toward the “Skip Ad” button but as the Advert started playing moved away and off the screen.

This showed how Gen Zer’s will watch interesting and appropriate Advertising content. This blue thumb then became constant throughout the whole phone experience. We had that baby sliding all over the place which gave people an insight into where Lexi’s intentions were.

The other important part was obviously creating the 3D environment, Lexi and finding an appropriate way to display the numbers and facts on how Generation Zer’s used Social Media and Daily Mail Australia’s Social numbers to back this up.

We teamed up with Blake Harcourt and created this experience in Unity, used lots of models and worked hard to ensure that Lexi’s room was reasonably messy and lived in. We went through a few iterations of Lexi.

The first problem we had was the hands holding the phone. We had to ensure that the hands were transparent so that you could actually see the phone screen in its entirety.

Also, Lexi had to look her age, we were able to nail that one down as well. We even captured her breathing so that when you are sitting there in her skin watching the phone you have the gentle and natural movement of her breathing. This worked really well and made the experience that little more realistic.

Ken Lee, Austechvr with the Daily Mail Australia’s Emmy. Dream on.

The other problem we had to figure out was how to display the text as mentioned above. As I am a Netflix fan my mind went straight to the show “House of Cards” and remembered how the text messages between characters were displayed on the screen so we would know what was happening. I thought that was a really effective way of doing that in the shows and it stuck with me.

So, it did not take long to come up with the idea of using that exact trick in this experience. I think you will agree it worked quite well.

We also used a Mirror in the bedroom so that when you look up you could actually see who you were. Of course, if this mirror was not there the experience would not have been as rich. We also were able to have the pictures on the wall behind Lexi shown in reverse just like a real mirror and this added to the experience.

We had one final challenge and this is where Michael Midis from LuminaVR really came into his own. This experience had to be shown on 30 Oculus Go headsets simultaneously, he nailed this and also managed this Gen Z VR project from start to finish seamlessly.

Micheal Midis – Top right corner controlling the headsets!

Michael was able to configure and manage a solution that enabled this to happen, this is quite a tricky task. I have to say that he did nail this and we were able to get 30 people watching the experience together throughout the whole Roadshow.

Lastly, the team from Daily Mail Australia were amazing. The event went for 2 hours and they really delivered on the content they shared as well as the storytelling throughout the Roadshow.

I feel as though I am an expert on our friends in Generation Z after completing this project and also sitting through the Roadshow a couple of times. They certainly know their stuff and are certainly experts in their field.

If you are interested in having us work on your own Virtual Reality experience for either Marketing or Training please contact us at [email protected] or give us a call.

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