Is the Metaverse going to be good for the future of digital marketing?
Every once in a while, something exceptional comes along that changes the marketing industry. From radio and television to the internet—change has been the only constant in this realm. Channels of marketing like social, mobile and search are the most recent. But, technology is forever changing and unimaginable innovations are becoming a reality.
One such unbelievable innovation is the Metaverse—an unique, immersive virtual space that is swiftly taking over the internet. The Metaverse is no longer limited to the realm of science fiction—in movies like Ready Player One or The Matrix series.
The metaverse is real—but what is it?
Introduction to the Metaverse
In science fiction, a metaverse is a network of 3D virtual worlds focused on social connection. The term is often defined as a hypothetical iteration of the internet as a universal, single virtual world that is stimulated by the use of AR and VR headsets
To put it simply, a metaverse is a virtual world parallel to the physical world. You create a virtual character and it comes to life in this virtual world. Moreover, you are able to travel between spaces—similar to how you visit websites on the internet, you can visit platforms on metaverse. Hence, it is considered a universe.
The digital world can be a social space, a video game, or even a shop. You can host a virtual party, meet or work, buy or sell things, or simply get social. It is up to you, what you want and how you want it. That is why metaverse marketing could be useful to brands. The possibilities are countless.
AR and VR in the Metaverse
A quick reminder: Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) has been around for some time and many brands (popular retail brand such as Michael Kors and IKEA) already use these technologies for their marketing and branding.
VR and AR are commonly used to create this parallel world by offering an intense 3D experience. While AR merges the physical and virtual worlds, VR goes beyond this and creates a completely virtual environment that can only be accessed through special devices.
How Does The Metaverse Help Digital Marketing?
The first tenant of digital marketing is the attraction that leads to interaction, and metaverse provides this to the full extent.
Several virtual events, gatherings and conventions can happen in the digital universe. With a pandemic going on, the metaverse is useful for all kinds of people. They can stay connected, even if it’s virtual. The shifting consumer behaviour and previous experiences show that metaverse can potentially stay with us for a long time. It is only beginning and marketing has adapted to changing technology well enough for the past 100 years—metaverse is simply another channel to get accustomed to.
Metaverse is new, so ideas don’t need to be complex. There are several brands that are already in the game. As mentioned before, the metaverse is an immersive and experimental space. So, many brands are offering events and installations that users can interact with.
For instance, Gucci celebrated its 100-year anniversary with Roblox. The event, called the Gucci Garden experience, had a Collector’s Room where people collected limited Gucci items in the metaverse. Dimension Studio, in collaboration with Balenciaga, launched a virtual production set-up that lets a user step onto a platform, be scanned by 106 cameras, and plunge into virtual worlds to try out garments and other products.
Opportunities on the Metaverse
Metaverse is highly interactive, so building long-term relationships with the chosen audience are possible. Audiences can play games or join virtual events. Brands can even create their own space or be a guest in existing ones like Gucci organising events in the Roblox space. These games and events become the perfect opportunity to build a bridge between customers and brands. When brands offer an immersive experience, users will end up spending more time in your space.
The whole virtual world is still new. If a brand has an exciting idea, popularity is inevitable because everybody will be talking about it, attracting old and potential customers. The concept of a 3D shop where customers can walk around is attractive.
However, what will that experience be like?
The experience will be akin to checking out items on Amazon with a highly realistic experience. They can even try the products. Therefore, brands have a higher chance to convince their customers to purchase items. Engagement marketing in this realm will be booming.
Challenges on the Metaverse
Not everything that shines is gold, so there are some things marketers need to consider. Intellectual property ownership is the biggest challenge among them all. If an AI is creating content, you might not get intellectual property protection. Therefore, the legal rights of work can’t be claimed.
Security issues on metaverse still need improvements. Ownership of digital assets is difficult to verify as well. If you make money virtually, for instance, you will need to prove it’s yours.
Metaverse will grow fast—there’s no doubt about it. With an increasing number of users, easily applicable ideas and limitless opportunities for brands, if digital marketers have a bold idea they can’t execute in the physical world, they can now do it in the virtual world.