3 Steps to Create a Virtual Corporate Museum

March 20, 2016

Across industries, companies are rushing to create teams for digital transformation. This new function is the digitization of media assets, processes, and asset management systems. Each company may approach team development differently. The collaboration is led by Chief Technology Officer, Chief Information Officer, and Chief Digital Officer. Although digitized assets can add more stress on strategists, who need to stretch budgets to sustain evergreen content, a virtual museum can help repurpose media assets and corporate artifacts into an interactive experience. Virtual museums are accessible across intranet and Internet, and shareable on social media. For brevity, we will cover three steps of the digital museum production process.

 

Digital Transformation and Digitization

Procurement is essential to the curation of items for the museum. Document conversion, photography, videography, and scanning are other functions in the digitization process. Archive libraries preserve media, and digitization prolongs their usable lifespan.

The Hewlett Packard Virtual Museum

 

Catalog (Digital Asset Management)

The digitized assets are stored in a digital asset management (DAM) system. DAM systems can be tailored to focus on the management of library, production, or brand assets depending on the nature of the collection. Advanced digital asset management systems can feature natural language processing so anyone on the team can search for media files just as they would ask in a conversation. Proper DAM enables ease and speed of curation.

The Coca-Cola Virtual Archives

 

Curation

Curation is a multifaceted process of strategy, design, and implementation. For the virtual museum, curation requires understanding and empathizing with the users visiting on mobile, tablet, laptop, or desktop. Digital museum curation differs from physical museums because each item is a digital representation. Instead of physically traversing a museum, users have direct and immediate access to digital exhibits. Virtual reality (VR) digital museums have inspired museum directors and curators to allow users an up-close 360-degree interaction with the artifacts. VR is much lower in cost now. For digital museums VR is soon to be a necessity. 

Honda's 360-degree virtual Collection Hall

 

Our research of digital corporate history museums found many sites were static photo galleries or company history timelines. In this blog post, we selected the digital museums with an interactive user experience or a user interface for the user to navigate. 

Museo Ducati, accessible via Google Street View

 

A virtual museum is not a direct replacement for the immersive experience of visiting a physical museum. They are unique ways to observe and learn. While a physical museum requires the visitor to travel, and a virtual museum offers global accessibility across media, the design processes for physical and virtual museums overlap. Although creating a standalone virtual museum provides easier access, designing and creating a virtual museum to supplement a physical museum offers visitors a crossover experience. The virtual museum has more flexibility for user experience. Curators can create many different types of experiences as well as offer 360-degree “up close” study of the corporate artifacts. Bringing together archival, digital transformation, and curation teams into an evergreen project is a collective effort to preserve and present corporate history, products, and heritage.

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