Two Reasons Why Documentary Virtual Reality Works

As a video marketer, you know this is true: Videos can loose their relevance just as quickly as they gain mass attention.


With the rise of documentary, there’s greater competition to keep your story in the minds of your viewers. So how can you make your brand’s video more memorable? The answer is simple: Use Virtual Reality as your storytelling platform.


VR allows your audience to have complete control over your content. The decision-making authority provides an immersive experience for users. As a result, they will develop stronger emotions towards your story and the environment you place them in.


If you have doubts about documentary VR, erase them. VR in documentary form offer a powerful storytelling experience your content might just need. In fact, it’s easier to create an indelible imprint on your viewers through the technology than it seems.



Users control their own perspective and direction.


The decisions are in the hands of the user in VR. Users choose where to focus their attention, which results in an intense attachment to the documentary.


Essentially, you present them an environment and the users decide where to focus their attention.


Consider Here Be Dragons and Within’s Clouds Over Sidra VR made for the UN. The short documentary shows the story of Sidra, a 12-year old Syrian girl who has been displaced from her home due to war. As the viewer watches the VR, they are transported into Sidra’s shocking world at the Za’atari refugee camp in Jordan. With the ability to control where they look, they are present in Sidra’s daily lifestyle as they follow her to school and back to her tent.

This freedom of exploration allows users to be highly engaged and active in your content.


Unlike conventional documentary videos, the VR form causes users to feel fully integrated and involved in the virtual world. Their undivided attention is on your content once they put on that headset. Your VR documentary consequently becomes more desirable because users will want to rewatch the video to explore a different side than they saw before.



You create a long-lasting impact.


Because users have complete authority over how they want to participate in your VR storytelling, it often results in a strong bond between users and the subject they are following. Think about it. If you were suddenly thrown into a young refugee’s harsh lifestyle, wouldn’t you feel emotionally attached to her story?


Documentary VR

Documentary VR reaches the human consciousness in a unique way. The experience puts users in the position as the person they are following. Director of Clouds Over Sidra, Chris Milk, notes how VR documentary allows people to be “existing without ego”, which then allows them to feel a more profound empathy for what they are seeing first-hand.


Although the audience will never truly feel the same devastation as Sidra, having the chance to virtually be in her world allows users to somewhat relate to her. Documentary VR triggers this rare sense of connection. Video judges have felt this connection: Clouds over Sidra has been recognized as a Webby Award nominee and winner in both the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity 2015 and Sheffield Doc/Fest 2015.


Everything feels real in VR. That’s why documentary VR works as an influential storytelling medium. It provides users a memorable interactive experience that differs from any standard video. So the next time you’re looking for a new way to reach out to your audience base on a deeper level, take the VR approach.





Brittany Ngoun Video Production Company Intern

Brittany Nguon is a Content Marketing Intern for Green Buzz Agency. She reports on the latest trends and techniques on video and Virtual Reality Marketing.

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