I just saw a great article in Wired about how Second Life isn’t adding up for the corporate sector. Coke and the NBA have been in there trying and while Second Life may have the cool factor, the cash register isn’t ringing for the marketers and their bosses!
Interesting because I have been saying this from day one. As one who advises clients on new/social media options, I checked out the blogging when it first got hot (loved it and saw great value), I checked out the podcasts (good for commuters but not everyone will have an IPod so it isn’t the perfect solution), I checked out video on Youtube and other sites (so cool and viral), I checked out Linkedin (great value but high maintenance) and MySpace (interesting but have to weed through a lot of riff raff) and Facebook (wild frontier with endless possibilities) and of course Second Life which, when asked, I said from day one it was cool but had no long term value (translates to sales) for the corporate sector.
Now at the Business Smart Tools conference in May, I invited Greg Verdino, then of Digitas, to give a demo of Second Life. With every conference, I want to present something that is way out there for those who aren’t messing around with the latest latest. He was great and it was interesting but many in the audience just didn’t see how they could use it to get their message out to their present and future customers. I agreed with them.
As Wired has mentioned, the concept of Avatars in an online community may evolve into something truly worthwhile for business, but until then, stick to the hundreds of other marketing options that exist online!