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Authors: Albrecht Enders (University of Erlangen-Nuremberg); Tawfik Jelassi (Ecole des Ponts Business School); Henning Blarr (HHL gGmbH); Harald Hungenberg (University of Erlangen-Nuremberg)
Originally published in: 2008
Version: 11 November 2008

Abstract

Initiated by a BusinessWeek headline in May 2006, a world-embracing hype about 'Second Life' has spurred many people and companies to enter Linden Lab's virtual world. Often mentioned in the Web 2.0 context, this case study illustrates Second Life's persistent world which is neither an on-line game, nor a social network site. While some of today's engaged companies use Second Life as a new marketing tool, other's developed advanced concepts in order to create corporate and customer value. To explain possible purposes, the case study provides different examples and objectives of companies, in particular the concept of the Mercedes-Benz Island, developed by Daimler-Chrysler's department of digital communication. Key objectives of the case include: (1) evaluating whether Second Life is a temporary hype; (2) analysing Second Life's business model and assessing its sustainability; (3) understanding the development and the market of virtual worlds; (4) identifying the potential ways of value creation in and by virtual worlds; and (5) discussing future options for Mercedes-Benz. This case gives students an opportunity to apply technology and general management frameworks to evaluate the present and prospective benefits of virtual worlds for 'real-world' companies.
Location:
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Spring 2007

About

Abstract

Initiated by a BusinessWeek headline in May 2006, a world-embracing hype about 'Second Life' has spurred many people and companies to enter Linden Lab's virtual world. Often mentioned in the Web 2.0 context, this case study illustrates Second Life's persistent world which is neither an on-line game, nor a social network site. While some of today's engaged companies use Second Life as a new marketing tool, other's developed advanced concepts in order to create corporate and customer value. To explain possible purposes, the case study provides different examples and objectives of companies, in particular the concept of the Mercedes-Benz Island, developed by Daimler-Chrysler's department of digital communication. Key objectives of the case include: (1) evaluating whether Second Life is a temporary hype; (2) analysing Second Life's business model and assessing its sustainability; (3) understanding the development and the market of virtual worlds; (4) identifying the potential ways of value creation in and by virtual worlds; and (5) discussing future options for Mercedes-Benz. This case gives students an opportunity to apply technology and general management frameworks to evaluate the present and prospective benefits of virtual worlds for 'real-world' companies.

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Location:
Industry:
Other setting(s):
Spring 2007

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