Vista Launch In Second Life

29 Jan 2007

It’s been a hell of a week and lots of things have happened. We’ve received a ton of press coverage already on national radio, in the newspapers and so on. It’s great to be part of something that spans such a wide audience. In this post, I’ll line up the final state as it is in Second Life for ‘our’ Vista/Office 2007 launch event.

Today, we are present on 10 official locations, where billboards and branded players have been put up to announce the event.

The Strawberry Estate is the first one. It’s my very own chunk of land in the game, with in the garden a miniature version of the Atomium, the monument where in real life the event is being organized. In every sphere of the monument, 10 people can reside. In every ball, a plasma screen has been put upon the walls. Normally all the balls will be colored as they will be lighted out in real life. In the Strawberry Estate Club, two giant screens have been put up next to a few sets of dancing balls, so people can enjoy the concert while dancing. Outside there are a few billboards to direct people to the right location, to other clubs in Second Life that have teamed up.

Straberry Estate, Atomium

Next, and this is truly a top of the bill, is the Parioli Club, in the Virtual Italian Parks region. What they have done is beyond all imagination. They’ve created a themed location and it looks very very cool. These guys have done an amazing job! It’s been a pleasure working together with them.

Parioli Club - Virtual Italian Parks

Parioli Club - Virtual Italian Parks

Third, The Sanctuary Rock. One of the most popular locations, is also joining the event. They’ve also put up billboards to announce the concert. The club is an ancient looking castle on a hill, an hosts tons of events.

Sanctuary Rock

Next participant is Club Elements at the GoL (Goddess Of Love) region. Also a high-roller in Second Life, a top location club with an impressive reach. Very trendy design and highly popular.

Elements Club @ Goddess Of Love

Continuing the line is Crayonville Island, the home of marketing guru Jaffe Juice, very well known with all marketing bloggers and new marketing adepts. Crayon is the first virtual marketing agency that also has a real life department. They’ve opened up their events amphitheater for us, and are welcoming the event with open arms. That will lead to quite some blogposts, without any doubt, since Jaffe Juice (aka Joseph Jaffe) is one the web 2.0 marketing pioneers. Bert Van Wassenhove from ‘One Agency‘ arranged our presence here. Cool!


Next is the Isle Of Lesbos, an island made just like the real one, with ancient ruins of the old Roman and Greek buildings. We get the entire beach front with ocean view and waving palm trees.

Isle Of Lesbos

Then we have the Mermaids Gentlemans Club. This club has a subwater level, with animated tropical plants and fish. The dancefloor is see-through and above the reef, and at night it has a very cool effect.

Mermaids Gentlemans Club

The 8thth partner club is ShowGirls, a casino and club that hosts a lot of events day in, day out. The video player is placed directly at the teleportation point and it’s outside on the terrace in the poker area. Looks very classy.


Closing the line is the Liquid Dreams club. An industrial strip joint with a load of Lords of Acid fans. They were amongst the first to literally beg to become a partner, and they’ve been arranging ad space with most of their partnering malls and clubs. These guys are overjoyed to be part of our little initiative.

Liquid Dreams

Then last but not least there’s the Irie Vibes Club, one of Second Life’s most popular open air reggae clubs. I don’t know why they want to partner, but Bert from the ‘one-agency’ (our marketing agency) also set this up. They’ve also hung the billboards and screen and are advertising in their own network to get the word out. Looks good as well!

Irie Vibes Club

Here are examples of the billboards that have been distributed to appear on various locations in the game, mostly in malls and on crowded locations.

Billboard 1

Billboard 2

The last billboard is scripted, in the game, clicking on a name will give you a teleportation link to that location. Clicking the ‘’ link will open a browser and it will load the site of the event.

The branded player we handed out to all the club owner can be copied as many times as they want, and it lights up in the dark. Once we’ve enroled the streaming and the URL is known, we’ll hand out the right address and everyone will be able to connect. The player is 8 meters wide and 6 meters high, that should work out fine.

And so, that’s where we stand now. Let’s break it down into numbers for reach.

Second Life has a region limit (per land) of 50 avatars, to be sure, let’s count 45. That means that through the official partners, we reach out to 450 to maximum 500 people who can watch the event for free, at the same time.
But, there’s also about 8 other clubs who joined ‘too late for the marketing train’, and they too received a player and some billboards. If I count those in as well, we have a potential reach of between 800 and 900 avatars. (an avatar is a second life citizen)

As for ‘general reach’ I’ll list up the daily traffic of each event location, traffic for today:

Irie Vibes Club: 24,533
ShowGirls: 7,853
Mermaids: 3,600
Liquid Dreams: 4,723
Parioli Club: 22,759
Elements at GoL: 132,049
Sanctuary Rock: 59,984
Crayonville: 397
Strawberry Estate: 1,790
Isle Of Lesbos: 47,906

That totals a daily reach of: 305,594 avatars.

Suppose only 10% of them looks at the billboards, then we still reach 30,000 people a day, with simple brand awareness. I know for sure more people look at the billboards, but I’m trying to be negative, just to not overestimate it.

Most of the clubs and locations have their billboards up for a few days already, so you can at least multiply by two (or three), and then we do not count the billboards in the 8 clubs that aren’t on the partner list, and we don’t count the effect of the billboards that have been put in several malls and other crowded locations. And we can’t measure the word of mouth effect either. But at least you can say: we’re making a point, and it’s being heard.

The guys from One Agency also made a ‘road show’ t-shirt which will be distributed for free, and they’re taking care of the technical part, the streaming and convertion. If all goes well, we’ll be able to feed a live Praga Khan concert to 2000 citizens of Second Life. That would be awesome!

I’ve had a lot of discussions with people in Second Life about brands and marketing, but I do know that everyone is really ‘pro’, because at least we didn’t just buy our way in. We come in with something that has never been done before, on an unseen scale. And we don’t take from the community, we give. That’s the best place to be for a brand.
Now the only thing I hope for is that Second Life will not be down at the time of the event. I’ve noticed the Linden Labs (the creators) through their support channel a week ago, but they haven’t got back to me (yet). Fingers crossed, and let’s have some fun!

All of you have the opportunity to follow the exclusive Praga Khan concert tomorrow, organised for the Belgian GA Launch, via streaming. Tune in at 11 PM CET! Check out and Experience the “Wow”!

SLUrls can be found here


Posted by Miel Van Opstal in Uncategorized


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  2. Serge

    January 29, 2007 at 8:51 pm

    This sure looks ‘wow’ to me, Miel. Best of luck! I’ll try and pop in. If there is still enough SL space for one extra avatar, that is… :-)

  3. Coolz0r

    January 29, 2007 at 9:05 pm

    Sure there is :) Just drop by at any of the locations :)

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    January 30, 2007 at 6:42 pm

    Good luck with Vista’s launch! I am going to buy the new Microsoft OS in a month or so, as some companies already started to ask for Vista-ready versions of my programs.

    I wanted to point out that the traffic value isn’t equal to the number of avatars. Lindens posted some explaination about it in the past, but there is no exact definition of the formula used to calculate those numbers.

    The best guess is that traffic is related to the time spent by avatars on the land, so it’s not a measure of the number of avatars but of the number of avatar-minutes (which are like manmonths, but less mythical… pardon the geeky reference).

    Overall, it would be helpful if LindenLab publicly explains how the traffic value is calculated; altough it’s much in the same ballpark as Google’s pagerank, so I don’t expect it anytime soon.



  8. Atlwolf

    January 30, 2007 at 7:07 pm

    Only problem is, traffic doesn’t equal number of avatars. It’s the amount of time an avatar spends at a location. It used to be the percentage of time spent out of an avatar’s total. It is now something like 1 point of each avatar in 5 minute increments. The exact formula has changed from the days of dwell is a complete mystery, probably to prevent exploitation. What this means is if one avatar stays somewhere for an hour, they are still only 1 person seeing the ad.

  9. Troy McLuhan

    January 30, 2007 at 7:20 pm

    You wrote that “Second Life has a region limit (per land) of 50 avatars”. That’s not completely correct… Mainland sims can have up to 40 avatars, and private sims can have up to 100 avatars. Those are the hard limits. On private sims, the estate managers can lower the maximum allowable number of avatars in an effort to prevent a sim crash. In a sim with lots of prims and scripts (like Spaceport Alpha, home of the International Spaceflight Museum), we typically cap it at 60 or 70 avatars.

    The best-case scenario for “number of avatars at one event location” is to have the event at the four corners of four private sims. Theoretically, 400 avatars could come. It would be fun to see if it is possible. I’d delete all prims and scripts in all 4 sims and would ask everyone to detach all prims and scripts (like bling) from their avatars.

    Also note: One avatar can have more than one person behind it, so if you have 30 avatars at an event, you might actually have 40 people.

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