E-Marketing in Minneapolis David Vinge, eMarketing Dashboard : Guide to Marketing Your Business in Second Life

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Guide to Marketing Your Business in Second Life

In this article, Deborah Kurfiss provides action steps, tips and tactics for marketing in Second Life, the 3-D virtual world that is entirely built and owned by its "residents."

As Deborah points out, "When IBM invests $10 million in Second Life, and companies like Cisco Systems, Sun Microsystems, General Motors, Dell Computer, Reuters Group, Sears and Toyota Motor build virtual offices,showrooms and meeting centers, they aren't doing it for kicks. These corporate buildings commonly feature interactive products, presentations, videos and web site links. Even global bank ABN-AMRO (expected to merge soon with Barclays to create one of the world's largest financial institutions) and a Dutch funeral industry association (uitvaart.com) have substantial Second Life presences."

Note that the article is over two years old (ABN Amro merged with with Barclays in April 2007)but the advice is still valid.

Deborah does not point out that quite a few companies have tried and failed. Reuters closed up shop this month. GM pulled the plug at the end of 2007 on Pontiac's Motorati Island. Following early adopter Wells Fargo who moved StageCoach Island to a rival provider, Active Worlds in 2006, two Dutch banks have since withdrawn from Second Life. Banking corporation ING, who initiated the Our Virtual Holland sims moved out of Second Life and the ING HQ in Second Life was torn down.

The second Dutch banker in Second Life, ABN Amro, left as well. They were disappointed by the level of interactivity and moved to a dedicated world on the Active Worlds platform.

As of last December there were 18 real world banks in Second Life when German based Volksbank Raiffeisenbank opened up their virtual shop.

Well... make that 17 banks. The other day Australian Bank Westpac left Second Life. They had set up shop in November 2007 for internal use.


Johan Vermij said...

Actually, there are (or have been) more banks in Second Life.

On this page RL Brand Directory there's an overview. Note that Westpac, Volksbank and Banca MPS are not on this list.

Also I have received confirmation that the Rabobank, another Dutch Bank also has a presence, though they haven't said where exactly.

Cheers, Veejay

Johan Vermij said...

In addition, ABN has not entirely left Second Life, nor has it quit on the whole metaverse thingy. They have now set up shop in Active Worlds, just like Wells Fargo, as this would give them more privacy to conduct their business.