A Threshold Virtual Tour™ is meant to inspire action by giving someone the information they need to make decisions, and hopefully, to visit that place in person. Our mission has always been to drive people to cross thresholds and pick up where the virtual tour left off. To do this, we’ve standardized a framework for how a location should be captured and what the key principles are to showcase the features within. We call these our Six Capture Principles and instill these concepts into every Creator (and customer!) we train to capture Threshold Virtual Tours.
Our exhaustive online training course is designed to train Threshold 360 Creators on these principles (screen shot from a training module)
Our first principle lays out where a Virtual Tour should ideally start. Principle 1: Provide Context aims to inform someone what to expect as they approach a location. While some virtual tour platforms are constrained to the interior of a space or sometimes omit exterior imagery, we think that it provides valuable context that can’t– and shouldn’t– be ignored. A proper tour should always start with a Grandview image. This is a fancy term we coined to showcase as much of the exterior as possible in the very first image of a virtual tour, simulating how it might feel to walk up to said location. The Grandview is always far enough away so that a viewer can answer questions like “Does this place have a parking lot?” or “Is there an accessible ramp to provide access?” We think these questions are important to answer because a person may be less likely to visit a space if they can’t imagine how they might get there in the first place!
Training courses include hours of video content produced by our Field Operations team who’s dedicated to supporting our network of Creators
After showcasing the exterior with Principle 1, the virtual tour will begin to head inside the location, which brings us to Principle 2: Smooth Doorway Transitions. This principle focuses on the threshold that any visitor crosses in order to enter a space. For doorways, we created our own unique “Step Inside” graphic that beckons viewers inside. To make this transition work, Creators know to center their cameras on the door they are highlighting and ensure they are 5-12 feet away from the door itself. This allows us to trace the doorframe properly and apply the “Step Inside” graphic to the frame which helps transition the viewer from outside to inside.
See the Smooth Doorway Transition and explore the Red Fox Inn & Tavern virtual tour, located in Middleburg, Virginia.
Check out the virtual tour of Dawn Ranch in Guerneville, California. A user can easily jump between key aspects of this large location.
- Choose the widest and most obvious path throughout a location, always sticking to natural means of egress and established pathways
- Capture accessible spaces as their own tour and use titles that incorporate “Accessible” plus a descriptor (ie. Accessible Entrance)
- Ask the location staff if there are any accessibility features they should be aware of (Do you have an elevator?)
- Use accessible features as Strikepoints when possible (i.e. setting up the camera next to the pool lift or near the elevator in the lobby of a hotel)
Step inside The Garden Room at the National Aviary in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania