Selfies are over, now it's dronies and Tourism NZ is in on trend

Rosie Baker
By Rosie Baker | 28 July 2014

Selfies are over, dronies are the latest thing as brands look to tap into the drone trend to add a new dimension to campaigns. Tourism New Zealand is the latest to jump on the bandwagon.

The tourist board used drone cameras to take snaps and short videos of skiers on the slopes of Queenstown over the weekend and then let people share the clips on Instagram using the #NZDronie hashtag.

Technology exists for drones to track a subject autonomously, as well as cameras that connect to virtual reality headsets like Oculus Rift to create VR in reality, creating the potential for the technology to deliver more than just selfies.

Roger Chapman, M&C Saatchi head of technology told AdNews that the cost efficiency of drones to provide aerial shots is “second to none” adding that brands can take “dream shots” they previously might not have been able to afford or access.

Travel and tourism is an obvious sector that can benefit from it, but sports is another, he suggested.

Fox Sports already uses a drone to take shots of football matches but hard to reach sports like skiing, racing or motorcross, where it's difficult to follow the entire track, would benefit. It would also give sponsors an avenue to extend the value they can add for fans with drone footage and activity.

But with the interest comes a logistical and legal nightmare. The influx of drone activity is creating issues in terms of safety, airspace regulations as well as privacy.

Earlier this month the House of Representatives made a number of recommendations on updates to privacy law to take into account remotely piloted aircraft – drones.

“There are some concerns about how they can fly and what they do, public safety and airspace, but the opportunities for brands to experience different things are endless,” said Chapman. “Momentum will build as people get an understanding of the tech and how it works.”

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