Assignment 5 – Vision Post

Jennifer Castro

The exciting part about the future is that technology is only going to become more advanced and impressive. It’s hard to know exactly what will become the new norm ten years down the road, or even five years from now, but speculating is fun.

As an advertising and marketing double major, it is especially interesting to have a vision about the future of media within my career, as seen through the lens of emerging media technologies. The opportunities and possibilities are endless, and to me, that’s the coolest part.

360 videos and virtual reality will only progress and become more popular, and I can see a lot of avenues embracing them. Some of those avenues include: sports, movies, advertisements, restaurants, and retailers. My guess is more companies and advertising agencies will begin blending VR headsets with commercials and advertisements they create for their products. In my opinion, 360 video movie trailers and even full movies will soon be able to be viewed, too, and even movies through VR headsets. This will create a more immersive experience for movie-goers, and may even convince non-movie junkies to start watching, too.

360 video will become more prominent within restaurants, real estate, and certain retailers or companies looking to show off their stores or areas. In due time, I envision every house on the market utilizing 360 video. Restaurants could use it, too, to not only advertise their layout, but also their menu items. We’ve already begun to see retailers like Pottery Barn make use of the technology allowing customers to virtually place furniture into their rooms, but it will soon become more widely used across retailers. The same goes for retailers selling clothes: only a few of them currently utilize technology allowing consumers to ‘virtually’ see what certain items would look like on themselves, but pretty soon most, if not all, retailers selling clothing will utilize this (especially as it may save time for consumers who are increasingly becoming busier and busier).

Travel companies and universities also have the ability to capitalize on emerging media technologies. Travel companies can utilize both 360 video and VR headsets to show potential travelers and tourists where they can take them along with potential sites that may interest them before they actually go to save time and money. Universities can utilize both as well for similar actions. Imagine an international student from China wants to come to Syracuse University. They may not be able to visit campus before deciding, seeing as SU isn’t exactly a quick jaunt from China, and 360 video or VR headsets give that student the opportunity to visualize the campus virtually. This idea is similar to what I’m exploring in my field test. I’m interested in creating multiple 360 videos around SU’s campus and then combining them all together into one, cohesive video as an idea for the university to utilize for prospective students, or anyone, really, to see the campus virtually.

Sports are a huge avenue where I see emerging media technologies booming. I know I’ve talked about 360 video and VR headsets the most, but those are the most interesting to me as well as two forms of emerging technology I can really see taking off, especially within my marketing and advertising interests. We’ve already seen some teams embracing these technologies with 360 views of the court or 360 views of the locker room, but I see it going further than that. I can truly envision fans being able to watch games in the comfort of their own homes through VR headsets in the future. They don’t have to be in the stadium anymore to feel like they’re actually at the game. As a sports fanatic, this makes me so excited. There are so many opportunities for teams and leagues to allow fans to have more immersive experiences with games. In my opinion, this will become especially popular with fans who may live far away and can’t get to games often. As someone who wants to work in sports, I am excited about the opportunity to hopefully utilize these technologies, or be a part of employing them to the masses.

Finally, gearing away from 360 video and VR headsets, I see chatbots as another form of emerging media that will erupt in the future. It’s a great marketing tactic for companies to have, especially when there’s such a negative stigma about the customer service many retailers and other companies have. While on spring break, my friend utilized a chatbot for our all-inclusive resort. She was able to ask questions, submit requests (needing more towels in our room, etc.), and view the entertainment schedule for the week. That particular chatbot worked really well, and we were all really impressed and quite surprised by its efficiency and ease of use. It was especially ironic for us, as we’d both learned about chatbots and made our own just a week before in this class. Hotels and other resorts, along with retailers, may start to utilize this technology more, especially when many don’t prioritize customer service properly or employ the right people for it.

The technology world is an exciting one. I look forward to the future and can’t wait to hopefully employ and utilize some new forms of emerging media within my marketing and advertising career! If utilized properly and successfully, all of these technologies have the power to boost the popularity of retailers, companies, and teams, and I’m so glad that I’m coming out of college at such a pivotal time in technology.