Virgin Media has become the first brand in the UK to use Virtual Reality to place viewers directly into the middle of a TV advert.
The YouTube ad is based around the Vivid House Party ad that appeared on TV screens earlier in the year.
In the VR version, viewers can experience the party in 360 degree vision and change the course of what happens.
The 2.5 minute film, which goes live on the 7th of April, has been produced for use with Samsung Gear but can also be experienced using Google Cardboard as a 360 extension within YouTube. The film can also be experienced in 3D using the dedicated Jaunt Smartphone application and in 2D using YouTube and Google Cardboard.
The experience was designed in collaboration with VR content specialists Jaunt (who have created VR experiences for Michelle Obama and Paul McCartney) and 3D experts Vision3 – part of the team behind the Oscar-winning visuals in Gravity.
Virgin Media will also be using the Virtual Vivid House Party to boost in-store customer experiences, making the video and specially made headsets available throughout 20 high street stores across the UK.
Virgin Media are the first major advertiser in the UK to tell a brand story based on its TV ad campaigns using live action film and a moving VR camera. This combined with motion graphics and 3D sound create a truly immersive experience.
As well as driving online interaction with the brand, Virgin Media is using the Virtual Vivid House Party to boost in-store customer experiences, making the video and specially made headsets available throughout 20 high street stores across the UK including its flagship White City store at Westfield London.
Kerris Bright, Chief Marketing Officer, Virgin Media said: “With 360 video and 3D virtual reality technology we’re taking our communication to the cutting edge and creating immersive experiences we know resonate with our audiences. Virtual reality will play a huge part in the future of advertising helping customers do more and experience more with our brands and our products.”
Sam Battams, Technology Innovation Director, Manning Gottlieb OMD adds: “We’re very excited to work with Virgin Media on their first virtual reality experience. We see virtual reality as part of a new wave of technology that enables brands to interact with consumers using more immersive, sensory forms of content. Virgin Media demonstrate leadership and bravery by being the first UK brands to adopt this technology to tell a brand story, something we think will place them in an advantageous position as this type of technology takes off. We can’t wait to see this roll out across stores.”