How Virtual Reality is Influencing PR

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Virtual reality (VR) was one of the top technology trends of 2016 and has continued growing into the new year. As VR continues to become accessible to more people, it leaves public relations professionals wanting to find new ways to implement virtual reality to their clients’ campaigns.

VR transfers users to new worlds, from the peaks of mountains to the depths of the ocean. Few companies have started to use this for promotional use, but the companies that do are creating an experience unlike any other for their customers.

There are many distractions that can come in between a target public and the message trying to be communicated, but with virtual reality the user is focused solely on the message being produced.

For example, North Face starting using the technology to transfer their visitors in New York and San Francisco to stores to Yosemite National Park. Marriott Hotels is also using virtual reality to convince their public to book trips. If you use the Marriott VR experience, you will be transported from wherever you are to London or Hawaii.

Early in 2016, H+K’s Alexander Jutkowitz, an innovation strategist said in an interview, “Smart brands are increasingly building consumer loyalty by openly imparting their hard-won insights and time-tested values through articles, videos and other visuals. Virtual reality — and other on-the-horizon tech platforms — could prove even more powerful for brands that know what they stand for and how to communicate it.”

The future of virtual reality looks bright and public relations professionals have a lot to leverage with this new technology.

Cayli Allen is a public relations major at Belmont University in Nashville, Tennessee, where she serves as the Chapter secretary of PRSSA and is a member of PRSSA National’s Industry News Committee. She also works in the marketing department of RFD-TV and plans to go into the entertainment field. You can chat with her on Twitter: @Cayli_Allen.


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