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SIGIA-L Mail Archives: [Sigia-l] "Wasting Millions on a Deserted Second Life"

[Sigia-l] "Wasting Millions on a Deserted Second Life"

From: Ziya Oz (
Date: Wed Jul 25 2007 - 04:47:22 EDT

We discussed the Second Life phenomenon previously here. It turns out its US
adherents could be as low as 100K, instead of the millions often cited; its
technology woefully unscalable; and commercially, it's a flop of major
proportions, according to Wired:

"For people who've grown up in analog, Second Life is not that hard to
understand," says Rishad Tobaccowala, CEO of Denuo, a consulting arm of the
global ad giant Publicis Groupe. "I have a store in the real world; I have a
store in the virtual world." In contrast, the kind of digital marketing that
actually works requires a conceptual leap. Successful online marketing is
targeted and specific, like direct mail but it's direct mail in a fun
house, where the recipients can easily seize control of what the mail says,
where it goes next, and how it gets there. You need to know how to buy up
keywords to maximize search returns, how to make the most of recommendation
engines, how to use the viral potential of Web video, how to monitor what's
being said in blogs and message boards, how not to blow it by trying to be
deceptive. Building a corporate pavilion in Second Life doesn't require any
of these things. It's simple and it's obvious.

"Companies say, 'It's an experiment' but what are they learning?"
Tobaccowala asks. "Basically, they're learning how to create an avatar and
walk around in Second Life." Which is fine if that's what you want to do.
Just don't expect to sell a lot of Coke.



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