Three ways companies are shifting strategies with 3D marketing post-pandemic

Example of a product configurator built to give customers the ability to customize the product to their preferences in real-time 3D.

We are on the threshold of a post-pandemic world and buying behaviors are changing. Industries – such as transportation, retail, and others – that once relied on demonstrating manufactured products in person continue to be challenged in unprecedented ways in how they market and sell their products and services.

The solution to these challenges? Immersive technology. Although once primarily associated with the multimedia and gaming industries, the use of immersive technology to power 3D marketing campaigns is steadily increasing. The need for tailored interactive experiences such as immersive shopping experiences, virtual showrooms, and 3D configurators to drive customer engagement and boost conversion is becoming more important to the buyer journey.

Unity commissioned Forrester Consulting to conduct a study, The New Way Of Working Is Immersive, which surveyed over 300 businesses and technology leaders to gather insights into current and future plans for adopting immersive technology to navigate business challenges and accelerate digital transformations. Using immersive technology to support marketing/selling activities represents one of the highest areas of near-term growth.

Let’s take a closer look at the study findings and highlight the key ways immersive technology is transforming sales and marketing strategies.

1. Improving digital marketing and e-commerce experiences

With in-person engagement heavily restricted, companies saw disruptions in several of their work phases, including engineering, operations and design. However, sales and marketing took the hardest hit, as 74% of companies reported it was more challenging to collaborate on their sales and marketing strategies during the first few months of the pandemic.

Within the first few months of the pandemic, how much more challenging was it to collaborate and innovate in these work phases relative to your experience pre-pandemic?

Base: Variable; global leaders with with knowledge of their organizations’ immersive technology adoption
Source: A commissioned study conducted by Forrester Consulting on behalf of Unity, September 2021

During these months, marketers also discovered that without giving customers a way to immersively interact with a product – as they would in person – engagement and sales begin to suffer.

In light of this realization, approximately four out of five companies (79%) decided that improving digital marketing and e-commerce capabilities – over any other areas of their business – was a more important priority.

What impact has the pandemic had on the importance your organization places on the following goals?

Base: 309 global leaders with authority over technology decisions at their organization
Source: A commissioned study conducted by Forrester Consulting on behalf of Unity, September 2021

And that’s a sound conclusion. Of companies that adopted immersive technology, 95% identified significant to moderate advancements in their ability to collaborate and innovate in sales and marketing.

2. Aligning sales and marketing experiences with changes in buying behavior

In the absence of in-person marketing and sales opportunities, such as experiential activations and showrooms, buyers increasingly turned to digital channels to research and purchase products and services.

The growth in e-commerce sales highlighted the shortcomings of traditional digital marketing tactics that relied on text descriptions and limited static product images.

Base: 309 global leaders with authority over technology decisions at their organization
Source: A commissioned study conducted by Forrester Consulting on behalf of Unity, September 2021

This sparked many brands’ interest in using immersive technology to improve their marketing experiences, with nearly half of organizations interested in using immersive technology to enable customers to explore their products, in realistic ways.

3. Adopting immersive technology for sales and marketing experiences

Even with brick-and-mortar stores resuming normal operations, spending in online channels is still climbing, and brands continue to recognize the importance of providing customers with a unique and interactive e-commerce experience.

Companies that have not yet transformed their sales and marketing experiences are searching for new ways to tell more authentic stories and better display their products and services online.

Enabling businesses to engage buyers with true-to-life product experiences, immersive technology is a viable solution with immediate benefits.

What improvements have you realized in your organization’s ability to collaborate and innovate in these work phases by using immersive technologies?

Base: Variable; global leaders with authority over technology decisions at their organizations using immersive technologies.
Source: A commissioned study conducted by Forrester Consulting on behalf of Unity, September 2021

Of the companies that showed interest, 30% intended to use immersive technology by late 2021 to late 2022 to market and sell their products (a 77% growth rate).

Transforming sales and marketing strategies

The adoption of immersive technology accelerated because of the pandemic, and the revolution in sales and marketing strategies has just begun.

Interactive, high-fidelity 3D experiences are helping brands captivate and capture customers in innovative and inspiring ways. Agile companies quickly turned to immersive technology and are already reaping the benefits. You should get started, too.

Step up your marketing game

Ready to boost your sales and marketing pipeline? We’re here to help. Learn more about Unity’s solutions for sales and marketing or book a demo.

B2B buyer behavior is changing. Is your organization equipped to adapt? Check out our latest e-book: Bringing B2B Marketing into the Metaverse and get expert advice on what’s driving the change, where the metaverse fits in, and what the new normal looks like.

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