Scion, Whyville and virtual loans. In April of this year, Toyota with its Scion brand entered the tween virtual world of Whyville. And, whilst the majority of brands that have entered the metaverse space decided to choose the older demographics of Second Life, this initiative of targeting younger segments appears to have worked well.
Accordingly to this New York Times article, the term ‘Scion’ had been used over 78,000 times in (obviously monitored) online chats. The overall traffic to the Scion venue in Whyville was also encouraging, with over 33,000 visits. Compare this to reasonably comparitive metrics for automobile brands in Second Life and the business case for younger virtual worlds starts to look compelling.
Whyville is positioned as a ‘Social Learning’ environment for the 8 – 15 age group and along these lines, Toyota Financial Services (TFS) recently announced the launch of ‘Scion Solutions’ in Whyville.
So what does this mean? It means that Whyvillians can now take out virtual loans with Toyota if they have insufficient clam balances (the in-world currency) to purchase the virtual cars outright. Scions in Whyville start from 15,000 clams, increasing up to 35,000 for a fully-loaded version.