Second Life.. Evaluating the Virtual Consumer World!

The Drivers seat of the BMS on Purdue Island in Second Life

Snapshot from the Drivers Seat of the BMS on Second Life

 

 My personal experience in second life has been interesting, dealing with Second Life  for 2 of my classes while at Purdue University. The first was OLS 274 under Professor Homan. I was able to go to class on the virtual world. I have also been on Second Life for my ENTR 200 class. In both of these classes they have had me visit various businesses and figure out how they would be successful. I also had to come up with business ideas for my OLS 274. It’s a great experience when the technology works well. There are times when the technology is slow and has limited or no connection.   

The current situation for Second Life is that it’s a new and growing trend amongst businesses and college professors. I see companies like IBM using this as a training ground for new employees! It allows for more interaction then just your normal conference calls. Second Life is trying to institute another form of virtual currency that can be transferred from the U.S. Dollar. I think that this is a great way to receive funding for the virtual world.   

A business in Second life requires a great deal of time and effort into the general layout of a business whether it would be virtual or realistic. You would have to find the space in the virtual world to put your business. You could purchase an island and build on it to use for your business.   

Chilling on the train at the IBM training Island

 

A business in second life would not be as personal as a business in real life. When you go into a real store you would feel more emotionally attached to the people you see and you would feel that your opinion mattered to the employees who work there. In Second Life you are just dealing with Avatars and you feel that it’s a very impersonal relationship with your customers. You have to try harder for customer satisfaction and building a relationship with your customer that will be long-lasting. In a real world you would see your customers often in the city or town you live in. In a virtual world you would not be able to control when you see the customer again. They could visit the island or store once and be gone for a long time, before they return again.   

I feel that the viability of a Second Life business is very feasible. I think that starting a business would be great for someone looking to be an entrepreneur. Someone that has a creative mind and is willing to take risk in life could find it very successful. It would take a great deal of work and you would have to have a great understanding of computers and the virtual world. You would have to have some backup plans in case the virtual world was not working on a particular day and needed to still sell your product or service.   

Ida's Car Dealership

Consumers are starting to have a growing interest in the virtual world. This may allow for businesses to add a new aspect to their business. You have to keep up with society and the growing trends that are emerging. Avatars on Second life can purchase anything from clothing to a new car to drive around and show off to their friends. They can also purchase pets to walk around with them in this virtual world! There are many companies that are on Second Life making real money! If you have found Second Life interesting, it is free just go to Secondlife.com and sign up!

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