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Herman Trend Alert: Second Life Revisited


Herman Trend Alerts are written by Joyce Gioia, a strategic business futurist, Certified Management Consultant, author, and professional speaker. Archived editions are posted at

From “Herman Trend Alert,” by Roger Herman and Joyce Gioia, Strategic Business Futurists

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GREENVILLE, SC — Last year, the virtual world Second Life (SL) ( received quite a bit of media coverage when several Fortune 500 companies staged events or built virtual presences there. Not so long ago, we covered the use of SL for market research (

Now, we revisit this topic to discuss some important developments. Second Life now has 11 million registered users with an average of 18,000 new people joining every day.


In November, the hit TV drama “CSI:NY” aired an episode tracking a killer into this virtual world. At the end CBS aired a commercial inviting viewers to go to the show’s website to find a branded link to join Second Life and "continue the pursuit." The result: An extra 100,000 people signed up.

Business-to-business and consumer products companies have also used SL for product development, recruiting activities and staff meetings. Corporations like IBM bring in authorized staff from around the world to have virtual meetings that may include PowerPoint presentations, audio, video, interactive surveys on the spot and more. Manpower has its own SL location and holds periodic job fairs.


Now, the Social Research Foundation, which provides the First Opinions Panel (the largest consumer research panel in SL), offers the groundbreaking Second Life Business Brief. To subscribe, visit It is simply the best way to keep up with corporate doings in SL. And just like our Herman Trend Alert, the Second Life Business Brief may be co-branded, i.e., other organizations may send these e-zines to their lists under their own names.

We agree with Prince Charles, who complimented the CEO of IBM for holding a corporate meeting in SL instead of flying his leaders from all over the world. That is why we were so excited about the opportunity to deliver a presentation in SL. Aliza Sherman, aka Cybergrrl Oh, is an event organizer and consultant for this new universe. She has engaged Joyce to deliver a brief presentation titled "The Future of Marketing" on March 24 at 3pm EDT. You must join Second Life to attend (it’s free). To learn more about Sherman’s leading edge services, email her at [email protected].


Copyright 1998-2008 by The Herman Group Companies, Inc., All Rights Reserved. Reproduction for publication is allowed by permission of The Herman Group, Inc., and must include the following attribution: “From ‘The Herman Trend Alert,’ by Roger Herman and Joyce Gioia, Strategic Business Futurists. (800) 227-3566 or The Herman Trend Alert is a trademark of The Herman Group of Companies, Inc.”



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