iKineo uses virtual reality to facilitate meeting future customers today

In recent months, customer engagement agency, iKineo was tasked with getting in front of time-starved Chief Information Officers (CIOs) on behalf of Telkom Business Connexion. Thecore objective of this engagement was intended to communicate and illustrate that Telkom Business Connexion, through its evolved offering,is equipped to offer unified communications as a single vendor solution;they have allthe infrastructure (networks – copper, fibre, cell, Wi-Fi, satellite), the solutions and integration capabilities to make it happen.

“One of the insights that helped us develop this campaign,” said iKineo Business Unit Director, Manfred Noriskin-Ender, “is that in economically difficult times, businesses cut budgets and departments like marketing and research are the first to get the chop.

We also realised that we wouldn’t be able to get CIOs to an event, and in the era of digitalisation, we built on the concept of taking these key individuals out of the office, without taking them out. We had to address their challenge of having to deal with multiple vendors and the inherent problems of integration and communication that come with digitalisation integration.Understanding the customer is the central component in any campaign, we tapped in and conceptualised this campaign using Virtual Reality (VR) to get the so-called ‘face-time’ and provide qualitative research that they’d find valuable.”

iKineo partnered with HDi Youth Marketeers to develop a structured and objective research component. Youngsters across two LSM groups, 5 to 7 and 8 to 10, and aged between 9 and 13 and then 14 to 18 were commissioned through a rigorous process.

The youth were asked pointed questions looking at different verticals (industry sector) with a specific focus onbanking, education, retail, healthcare, andservice delivery. The unscripted and unedited research was shot as a 360-degreeview on a modern rooftop in Johannesburg. The shoot was also usedto generate more content by including multiple experiences across each segment. In each film, different visual points of interest were added such as a juggler, drone, balloon artist, a stilt-walkerto create a more immersive experience.

The VR content is shared by means of VR headsets and is used to create a strategic talking point for the account manager and to add value by sharingrelevant research. The customer chooses the content they want to see. This interaction allows for a digital readiness assessment to drive customers to view other content.

Manfred detailed, “the additional content that was shot was repurposed fordigitalplatforms such as social media and the website. Supporting the video content were tailor-made opinion pieces for each segment, which are housed on the website, ensuring that we provided not just an engaging experience, but a deeply immersed content experience that gave CIO a point of view with real substance.”

The campaign will run for the rest of the year.