Visual Immersion: Enter Our Wonderful World Of Retail
The online retail world can be a very one dimensional experience. But digital specialist Visual Immersion is breaking down those barriers by creating bespoke virtual tours for brands that will redefine their customers’ digital journey.
fcbusiness spoke to the company’s Managing Director, Ryan Becker, to find out more about how they can create an immersive retail experience for your fans.
How important is the online retail experience?
Online has always been key for any brand and in today’s climate with the challenges of Covid it’s even more important to give customers an amazing online experience when they can’t physically get to visit you. We are seeing more brands getting in touch for help with personalising their customers’ journey making it feel more immersive, more experiential, as if they were there in person. This is even more crucial in the world of football as it is not just a retail experience, but a fan experience we are creating.
Online retail can be very one dimensional. How does Visual Immersion change that?
Previously the online journey has been focused purely on selling a product or giving information. It hasn’t been hugely interactive, feeding people information rather than allowing them to discover things as they shop. Visual Immersion evolves that by creating virtual experiences for brands so their customers can walk through a store and feel as if they were there from the comfort of their home whilst navigating via links to the commerce site to make purchases.
Do you help clubs define a strategy to develop the online retail experience?
Yes, we pride ourselves on creating bespoke packages depending on our clients’ needs. We work closely with brands to define what they want to achieve and suggest ways to surprise and delight through the journey. We ensure to embed rich, meaningful, actionable content into every unique shop we build including links to social media channels. One recent example is our work with Lee Hyde at Ipswich Town FC and the relaunch of their retail store. We combined a mix of video and hidden content for fans to explore, happen upon and also actively search for as they explored the new store. This resulted in great feedback and generated some real excitement for the relaunch, despite the fact people can’t yet physically visit the store. Over 5000 fans walked through the Virtual store in the first month and the video of the model had over 10K views across multiple platforms.
Does the technology work across digital and mobile platforms and can it be integrated with existing retail platforms?
Yes the models can be viewed from any device and link seamlessly with your website. We build call to actions throughout the models to ensure customers/fans continue to click back to the site or to point of purchase and remain engaged and our stats demonstrate how well this works. The models can be built to fit in with a club’s existing website and platform. We always ensure our work feels part of the brand.
Given the continued problems with Covid and the restrictions in place, do you think a more immersive retail experience will be critical to future growth for football club retail?
Both in stores and online immersive retail is crucial, Covid hasn’t changed this, it’s just made the demand even greater. Within football club retail we are seeing the need is amplified due to fans not being allowed to the grounds but we are also seeing the assets many of these clubs have are superb and make our models incredibly engaging, the Bobby Robson video within our Ipswich Town model is one of mine (and the fans’) favourites.
How do you work with a club to create a VR package that’s right for their needs?
We offer a 1:1 service combining all aspects of the club from hospitality, retail to ticket sales creating a bespoke virtual tour that works for the individual club and fans, we ensure the tours have incredibly engaging content and always have a call to action that helps drive a fantastic ROI. All packages also include a social/website video and HDR images of the space we have captured.