Virtual Reality Gives Fans Exclusive Access to the Wallabies
To excite fans about the Rugby World Cup, HSBC and virtual reality specialists at S1T2 created an immersive 360° experience that transported fans to exclusive scenes with the Australian Rugby Union team. HSBC Wallabies All Access put the audience front and centre as a star player in the team.
Inside the virtual reality world, audiences were joined by Israel Folau, Stephen Moore, and the rest of the Australian Wallabies as they trained at Manuka Oval, pumped up in the locker room pre-game, and entered Suncorp Stadium for the big game.
The HSBC Wallabies All Access activation was launched at Westfield in Sydney CBD. The experience was housed in a custom-built Wallabies locker room at the entrance of the Mall, ensuring an engaging experience for participants even before they put on the virtual reality headset. The experiential marketing event was also supported by brand ambassadors and Wallabies players to help facilitate the experience for patrons.
Held in the busiest pedestrian precinct in Sydney, the HSBC Wallabies All Access activation received 130,000 experiential impressions from foot traffic alone. The four minute experience was viewed 1,130 times, garnering over 157,000 brand impressions on social media and 35,000 actions online. The activation was attended by media representatives from Fox Sports, Rugby HQ and ESPN.
360° Viewing Angles and Spatial Audio
As a mobile virtual reality experience, HSBC Wallabies All Access was designed to be viewed on a Samsung Galaxy S6 through the Samsung Gear VR. This choice allowed us to create a portable kit that could be used across experiential marketing activation sites when the experience was launched. The result was a high-definition immersive video paired with surround sound that put audiences in the thick of the action.
Each virtual reality content piece was produced using a custom rig with a 14-camera GoPro setup allowing us to capture complete 360° viewing angles in every scene. Filming in a variety of different locations, every shot was comprised of seven different video angles recorded and synchronised to the same length.
Each of these shots required careful pre-production planning – both in terms of the talent’s movement and the crew’s positioning – as everything was seen by the camera on the day. The video equipment was then paired with an 8-mic setup, positioned at key areas in each scene to enhance spatial awareness, creating a dynamically engaging digital marketing activation.
Full Control in Virtual Reality
An Australian-first for virtual reality in sports, the experiential marketing activation uses a Samsung Galaxy S6 and the Samsung Gear VR to transport audiences into a live-action virtual world. Pairing high-definition 360° video with surround sound, the virtual reality technology created a completely immersive environment, creating an experience that transcended passive viewing by giving audiences full control over what they saw. Carefully positioned cameras also recorded each participant’s virtual reality experience, amplifying the event by creating a unique piece of content that could be shared with friends and family on social media with the hashtag #WallabiesAllAccess.