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04/03/2024 – About the Topic

In April we will work with the Chicago Chapter of the American Marketing Association on a program discussing how marketing is applying spatial computing components into their strategies. Marketers can use augmented reality to bring products to life in interactive campaigns or virtual reality experiences transporting consumers into the heart of a brand’s story.

Retailers use augmented reality to enable customers to virtually try on products, from clothing and accessories to makeup. Brands create immersive 360-degree videos and images for social media and websites, offering viewers an interactive and engaging experience. Augmented reality is integrated into product packaging, turning static labels into interactive experiences. Car manufacturers and real estate agencies, among others, utilize virtual showrooms. Marketers incorporate elements of gamification using augmented reality to enhance customer engagement. Retailers even deploy AR navigation tools within their stores to assist customers in finding products efficiently.

Join us on the first Wednesday April 3, a conversation by professionals shaping the future of marketing through spatial computing. In a world where the virtual and real seamlessly intertwine, we’re here to guide you through the possibilities, whether you’re a tech enthusiast, marketing guru, or just curious about the next wave of innovation. Come be a part of The Next Evolution, where immersive technologies meet the marketing frontier, and the future is an open canvas waiting to be painted.

Panel Members

The Next Evolution Hosts

Matt Wren will be moderating the discussion in person while Caroline Dennis will be hosting the virtual portion in Virbela. Matt is the President of Origin Development & IT and founder of The Next Evolution event series and VRAR Chicago. Caroline is entrepreneur, startup advisor, and advocate from and XRWomen.

What’s the Format

Times in Central Daylight Time (CDT)
5:30-8:30pm at 2112 for the In-Person Program
6:00-8:00pm in Virbela for the Virtual Program
5:30-6:15pm – Networking & Technology Demonstrations
6:15-6:30pm – Introductions & Welcome
6:30-7:10pm – Panelist Presentations
7:10-7:45pm – Panel Discussion with Q&A
7:45-8:30pm – Networking & Technology Demonstrations

We will start with informal networking, then host a panel discussion to answer audience questions, and we end with more networking. We keep it simple and informal – this meetup is about you, our members, and not just a soap box for the host, presenters, or our sponsors. Come and get your questions answered, take your next step in Immersive Technology.

Attending The Next Evolution

Attending in-Person

1871 | 222 W Merchandise Mart Plz | Suite 1212

For our Physical Venue, 1871 can be found in Suite 1212 on the 12th floor of theMART, which is located on the North side of the river between Wells and Orleans. For easy access, enter through the Orleans entrance on the west side of theMART and take those elevators to the 12th floor.

Watching the Live Stream

Primary Live Stream |

People can join by watching the scheduled live stream where we will field questions from!

Attending Virtually

Virbela | Virtual Environment |

We encourage folks to join us in the virtual environment Next Evolution Hall by downloading the Virbela open campus client at See more about getting started and navigating Virbela here.

The Virbela virtual environment resembles a physical space, so you will be able to talk with other attendees prior to the start of the presentations. To get to the Community Hall once in Virbela, you click the GO TO menu on the top left of your screen >> Meetings >> The Next Evolution Hall. We suggest that you arrive no later than 6:00pm and we will get started promptly at 6:15. Please try to get familiar with the technology prior to the day of the meetup, as we will be unable to provide support during the event.

win a prize collecting nfts from attending

Through a partnership with Vennity, we will be creating unique NFT Badges to collect by attending 2023 The Next Evolution programs. Each badge you claim counts towards an end of year drawing for a prize to be given out in December 2023.

thank you to our sponsors

thank you to our supporting partners