Second Life is a virtual world where people can purchase land, and then create any kind of avatar and community they want. Want to be a gorgeous model? A doctor? A drug dealer? You can be anything you want to be. People actually purchase (with real money) land on which to build a house. There is an entire virtual economy taking place here. And, with nearly 275,000 "residents" as of today, it seems to be thriving.
People spend large amounts of time in this environment, which is sort of a SimCity on steroids. So what opportunities might there be for marketers? Harvard Business Review recently published an article entitled "Avatar-Based Marketing" that explores the potential.
marketing online, “you want sustained engagement with the brand rather
than just a click-through” to a purchase or product information, says
Bonita Stewart, responsible for interactive marketing for
DaimlerChrysler’s Jeep, Chrysler, and Dodge brands. “Avatars create an
opportunity for just this type of engagement.”
Scott is the co-founder and managing partner at Abstract Edge, a creative digital agency that provides online marketing, brand-focused design and technology services to organizations with serious content publishing needs.