Sunday, August 12, 2007
Second Life: A Dead End for Marketers
Ever since Business Week magazine proclaimed the virtual world Second Life to be the next big thing on the web, major brands have lined up to pour marketing dollars towards building their brands there. Over 50 major companies, from blue chip firms like the NBA and Coca Cola to cool hunters like Scion and American Apparel, took the plunge developing stores, arenas, etc hoping to avoid missing out on what might be the next MySpace. Looks like Second Life may nothing more than a web bubble about to burst when it comes to online marketing, however. Wired magazine, the authority on all-things tech, came out with a scathing article in its most recent issue.
While web2.0 sites like Youtube, Facebook, and Digg are undeniably blazing a trail with their growing user-base and easy-to-use social media tools, Second Life can't seem to get anyone beyond its core group to participate. Apparently, the vast majority of Second Life looks like a deserted wasteland. Not exactly something most brands are looking to associate with.
The Wired article is actually only the latest media outlet to have turned its back on Second Life. In July, the LA Times wrote about how many marketers are not satisfied with their experience. Back in January, Valleywag called Second Life's economy a pyramid scheme.