From healthcare to the education industry, successful marketers are embracing immersive content experiences to engage customers with meaningful content that meets their needs. In fact, 90% agree that content designed to create a visually engaging experience performs better than content that doesn’t—improving engagement as much 252%.
That’s because this form of interactive storytelling resonates well with audiences who are increasingly digitally savvy—Millennials and Gen Zers, we’re talking about you. In addition, these audiences have missed out on meaningful connections due to past pandemic-related restrictions, making them more receptive to brands that create immersive, content-rich experiences (just) for them.
What Is an Immersive Content Experience?
Before we define an immersive context experience, let’s back up and revisit Tendo’s definition of context experience: the summation of all the interactions someone has with your digital content and the impression they take away from it. An immersive content experience, therefore, emphasizes immersion and interactivity with the content, rather than passive reading like with a static PDF. Some of the more common immersive content types include:
- Interactive polls and quizzes
- Animated data visualizations or infographics
- 3D images and video
- Augmented reality (AR)
- Virtual reality (VR)
Immersing Users in Virtual and Augmented Reality
As 2022 goes on, both B2B and B2C industries are charting a continued rise in the use of augmented and virtual reality to delight audiences. Statista reports that the global AR, VR, and AR/VR—or mixed reality—market topped out at $28 billion last year and is expected to expand to $250 billion by 2028.
More specifically, VR experiences in the B2B industry are expected to account for 40% of all experiences by the end of this year, according to B2B Marketing. It all started in 2017, when Intel put event-based VR on the map, providing over 250 VR units at a press event at the Consumer Electronics Show. These VR headsets transported wearers from Utah to Vietnam, then finally landing them at center of an NCAA basketball game.
Fast-forward to today, and B2B companies are using VR to drive brand awareness and generate leads. For example, Key Technologies, which manufactures food processing systems, unveiled a 360-degree VR demo at the Pack Expo. Visitors got an inside look of the VERYX digital food sorting platform by following a green bean’s journey through the new product.
To further differentiate itself from its competitors, Cisco announced in fall 2021 the addition of AR to its Webex collaboration solution. Called Webex Hologram, the pilot service supports photorealistic, real-time holograms of team members to enhance virtual collaboration.
Visual Storytelling for the Visually Inclined
According to research compiled by OneSpot, 65% of people are visual learners, while 90% of the information that travels to the brain is visual. Infographics can increase website traffic by 12%, as well as forge deeper connections with your customers. These visual data representations help communicate content in an engaging and easy way.
SAP takes solution-focused webpages one step further by making its Partner Solution Progression page interactive. This dynamic design communicates key messages and value props, while inviting prospective and existing customers to click and learn more.
IBM’s Industry City also leans on experiential content to connect with users. This immersive infographic entices customers to explore a variety of industrial landscapes and their solutions.
Immersive Experiences That Support Users’ Decision-Making
Immersive experiences support better customer decision-making, according to a Ceros survey on immersive content:
- More than 1,000 marketing and design professionals said that “very effective” marketers are 60% more likely to use calculators to capture their customers’ attention and support them in their decision-making.
- They’re also 200% more likely to use data visualization and 300% more likely to develop interactive publications.
For example, Salesforce provides potential customers with a B2B commerce calculator that quickly figures out how much more revenue they’ll make using the company’s services.
Make Rich Content That Meets Customer Needs
Whether it’s interactive calculators, data visualizations, or AR/VR, make sure the content marketing you create maps to the user journey. A content-rich, immersive experience that supports and enhances the customer experience will help generate leads, build customer loyalty, and increase your ROI.