Whenever I hear about a new digital revolutionary gimmick, I think about the Second Life (that was just 3 years ago, but seems so “last decade”).
From my friend Clason:
“I was reading an article in Wired magazine about the colossal failure that was Second Life … according to the article, many brands had spent millions of dollars developing branded properties in this alternate world that at the time was reported to have a “population” of several million. Upon closer examination, it was discovered that these numbers had been grossly overstated as the majority of registered users had as many as four accounts. Even more users had signed in once or twice and never returned. The number of regular users was quite low … in North America, something like 10,000. Digging deeper, they discovered that “members” in the regular visitor population were not visiting the extravagant properties that the brands had built for them … they were all going to the same place … a lollapalooza-sized orgy at a nude beach. The total brand investment exceeded something like $100 million. The brands that had blindly jumped on the Second Life bandwagon had basically spent roughly $10K per interaction collectively to market themselves to what was, for lack of a better term … a cyber pervert convention.”
Maybe our industry as a whole needs to concentrate less on producing “digital content”, and focus more on creating content that people won’t delete on contact. It’s troubling that something like “Second Life” can even happen — like some Madoff Pyramid scheme. I remember (just 3 years ago) — digital “prophets” were telling everyone that life without “Second Life” was not worth living. They’re the same folks who are preoccupied with the next “big thing” in Social Media. It reminds me of Robert Preston in “The Music Man”.
As Clason reminds me, this business is and always has been about one thing … great ideas that generate sales. Granted with the advent of the digital age we now have an overwhelming number of entry points into consumers’ lives but the basic fundamentals have not changed.