Ever heard of Second Life, the 3-D virtual world that lets users live a life without boundaries?
It’s OK if you haven’t heard of it and are stumped by how it all works. Essentially, it’s a world where users are guided only by their imagination, as the site encourages users to “do what you love, with the people you love, from anywhere in the world.”
Millions of people were once like you, arriving on “Welcome Island” a bit unsure but quickly learning the ropes of walking, zooming with their camera, chatting, standing, sitting, flying, and teleporting.
And as people became acclimated to their new environment, they did what most of us in the “real world” do – they went shopping.
Second Life has become an economic hub whose marketplace supports millions of U.S. dollars in monthly transactions. The Second Life “Linden dollar” currency can be converted to U.S. dollars through online currency exchanges.
And Second Life sure knows how to appeal to its users’ diverse shopping tastes. From tech gadgets to clothing, to medieval weaponry to designer shoes, the options are limitless. If you can imagine it, chances are someone is selling it.
Corporate Branding Goes Virtual
But what exactly do companies do inside this 3-D virtual world? And why would a company choose to create a virtual storefront in Second Life?
Dozens of multinational corporations like IBM, Dell, and Verizon have flocked to Second Life. In addition to being part of a major economic hub, corporate executives enjoy maintaining their virtual presence because it enhances their brand while making tasks like job interviews, career fairs, teleconferences, and staff meetings more personal and productive. Not only is it more relaxing to be able to do this from the comfort of their desk or home, it further minimizes the logistics for employees to travel for meetings with clients or customers.
And for smaller companies, it offers an innovative branding solution to reach and attract repeat, loyal customers around the world.
PRIVATE WiFi™ Debuts in Second Life
And that’s part of the reason PRIVATE WiFi created a virtual presence in Second Life. As a small company dedicated to protecting consumers’ online privacy, it was a natural extension of the company’s goals and initiatives.
In honor of hitting a new milestone – PRIVATE WiFi celebrated its first marketplace purchase in Second Life — we recently chatted with Maryrose Roeckell, PRIVATE WiFi’s customer support manager and graphic designer. Maryrose is the woman responsible for creating PRIVATE WiFi’s strong virtual presence within Second Life, earning a “5-star” rating for the virtual storefront on Second Life’s famous marketplace.
Q: Tell us a little more about MD Properties.
A: MD Properties is owned by the avatar “Mary Dana” (aka, me, Maryrose Roeckell) and I have successfully launched a virtual presence for Private Communications Corp (which owns the PRIVATE WiFi software). MD Properties is one of the oldest real estate companies inside Second Life. They opened their doors in 2005 and have over 100 rental properties. As an MD property owner, I have participated as a Second Life Mentor, worked on Second Life’s famous CSI NY Project, and created one of the first Marriage Ceremony Groups inside Second Life. My MD Properties group has over 150 active members. They have their own website at http://marydanaproperties.weebly.com.
To access The MD Properties group page, visit http://world.secondlife.com/group/952eaf56-0bf7-2402-dc25-890ea3297309
Q: So this led to Private Communications Corp deciding to get in on the list of real-life businesses in Second Life?
A: Yes, exactly, the company wanted to conduct in-world operations along with other companies such as Dell, IBM, and Cisco. There was a period where real-life businesses were pulling out of Second Life, but more real-life businesses are slowly making their way back in due to niche marketing. Marketing a product inside Second Life is a lot different than marketing on the Internet. Once you realize that, your business will become successful in-world.
Q: Now we want to hear all about how you took Private Communications Corp.’s newly released software, PRIVATE WiFi, and created a virtual version of it for residents inside Second Life.
A. Since Second Life only allows “virtual products” (products that can only be used inside the game) to be up on their marketplace, I designed the software to be able to run inside Second Life. A virtual software box was created and the software is accessible through a “touch script.”
Q: How does this work for the typical buyer?
A. Well, this means that once the buyer obtains the software, he or she just takes it out of their inventory, and touches the software box to start the PRIVATE WiFi. This new virtual product will ensure safer Marketplace purchases, and more privacy playing on Second Life.
Q: What else do we need to know about finding the product or your profile?
A: Just click on the links below to check out my profile, CEO Kent Lawson’s profile, and also our storefront:
- Mary Dana’s profile:
- Kent Lawson’s profile:
- PRIVATE WiFi SL url (Our SL store location from your browser)