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South African Tourism targets tech-savvy consumers with Oculus Rift

Monday April 13, 2015 at 1:50pm
South African Tourism is using Oculus Rift Virtual Reality technology to invite guests on a ‘five-minute holiday’ to South Africa, as part of an in-bar immersive experiential campaign targeting tech-savvy consumers. The campaign was created for SAT by award-winning experiential marketing agency Tribe. The consumer campaign, which launches in April, will involve activity in specially selected bars in London and Manchester, targeting younger tech-savvy consumers who will be given the opportunity to ‘escape’ to South Africa. The objective of the activity is to change attitudes towards South Africa by showcasing the country’s art and culture in unexpected ways to consumers who may not have considered South Africa before as a creative, exciting and culturally-rich holiday destination. When consumers arrive at the event space, they will find themselves in a ‘departure lounge’ before taking their position in one of the specially designed Oculus pods for their trip. The ‘five-minute holiday’ plunges guests into a vivid South Africa landscape including abseiling down Table Mountain, feeding an elephant, kite-surfing and cage diving with sharks (filmed using a specially 3D-printed underwater camera rig). The 360-degree views, HD visuals and innovative binaural sound ensure that guests really feel that they are fully immersed in the landscape around them. Consumers will then exit the pods into a South African bar experience complete with a DJ playing contemporary tunes, South African street food provided by Bunnychow, South African wine tasting courtesy of the Cape Wine Academy and iconic South African animals and landscapes projected throughout the event space. Specially-trained Brand Warriors (Tribe’s promotional staff) will be on hand to answer questions about South Africa and to encourage consumers to enter a competition for two lucky consumers to win a pair of flights to South Africa. “We want to surprise the UK travelling public and Oculus Rift is the ideal partner for us to reach a young, tech-savvy market,” said Juan Herrada, UK Manager of Marketing and Communications for SAT.” This is the first time Oculus Rift and binaural sound have been combined to create a unique, immersive holiday experience for the UK public.” Seamus Wright, Account Director at Tribe, adds: “By using Oculus Rift technology we were able to deliver an immersive and immediate experience. It gave us the chance to showcase the cultural richness and vibrancy of an amazing country that we know is a fabulous holiday destination.” In addition to creating the consumer-facing campaign, Tribe was also responsible for creating a press event at the end of March allowing the travel media, travel partners and influential bloggers to try out the Oculus Rift Technology and experience the campaign for themselves.
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