Second Life’s shelf life

Secondlife I think we are in the midst of a time of chaos.  Cool chaos, but chaos none-the-less. 

Marketers are scrambling around, trying to get a handle on this whole social media "thing."    And we don’t want to miss anything — so we’re trying a little of everything.

Including Second Life

Let me give you my take, by asking you a few questions.

  • Would you like to ask your prospects to download a special software, just so you can talk to them?
  • Do you want to create a persona (maybe a pirate’s wench or archaeologist) and deal with other people who have done the same?
  • As a consumer, do you have time to navigate a cartoon you around, trying to find other adults, let alone other business people, to engage with?
  • Would you trust market research done with no controls or any reassurance that the participants are being truthful (remember, they are telling you they’re a biker dude from Fresno)
  • Do you sell a commodity (music CDs, software downloads) or are you a huge budget (Starwood Hotels, Toyota) advertiser — if not — is this really a viable venue for your sales efforts?

If you want, go be a pirate’s wench.  Have some fun. But I wouldn’t plan on making your fortune there.  (Unless of course you pillage a village!)

Update:  I was listening to Mike Sansone’s blogtalk radio show and one of the topics covered was Second Life.  Download the podcast and take a listen.

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2 comments on “Second Life’s shelf life

  1. The apparent ‘market’ that exists in Second Life is flawed in that it was created by the marketers themselves, not the community.

    Aside from your other points above (which I think are all relevant) I think this is a fad and this type of social marketing in a virtual environment is many, many years off.

    Your right – if your marketing budget is not that of a Fortune 500 company and you are not selling a commodity there are hundreds of better, alternative paths for new media marketing.

  2. Andy,

    Excellent point — I hadn’t thought about the fact that the users themselves weren’t involved in the creation.

    So it’s a little like moving into a furnished house. Convenient but it probably doesn’t feel like home.

    Fad is the perfect word. I think we will see many of them come and go as we sort through all that is new to find value.

    Drew

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