The metaverse may be a new and emerging concept to many, but the idea has been around for a long time. With games like The SIMS and Second Life, people have been able to disappear into a virtual world of some form for 20+ years. The advancement of technology has meant that we are now able to evolve this into an immersive virtual experience. That’s all well and good for gaming but what does it mean for Digital Marketing and can every day companies use the metaverse as part of their campaigns?
As the metaverse develops, you will be able to create and launch virtual shops, social networks, businesses, host events, provide virtual office spaces, the list goes on. While the current functionality of the metaverse may only seem relevant to the younger generation, that is only because they are the early adopters. The older generation are taking more of an interest every day. Cryptocurrencies and NFT’s provide an opportunity for early birds to capitalise on this emerging world and this is when brands can start to use it for their marketing strategy.
There are many examples of how large brands and fashion houses are using the metaverse to further their marketing efforts. But we are a niche agency and many of these examples wouldn’t be relevant to our clients. So how do I see it being used?
BIM/CAD could be taken to an entirely new level, architects would be able to design entire buildings from the foundations up using virtual renders of physical products and interact with it virtually. With Architects adopting this technology, it stands to reason that this could be a lucrative advertising prospect for manufacturers to an audience that is notoriously hard to reach and engage.
The usual boring events in hard-to-reach convention centres in the middle of nowhere with two bored looking salespeople and a handful of leaflets could be transformed into an impressive and engaging event where the usual limitations of space are not a problem. They’ll be able to show off their products in entirely new ways.
Brick manufacturers, for example, would be able to show people round a fully rendered house or high-rise office blocks while talking about the benefits of their products. Or do virtual factory tours and interactive training workshops that would normally be off limits. Each convention centre stall could be a door into the brand’s own virtual world.
Instead of a brochure or flyer, imagine a virtual version where the images are brought to life and the details are narrated by an expert; potential customers could ask questions in real time and get the exact answer they need instead of a generic reply that vaguely answers what they asked.
If you think of the amount of information platforms currently store on their users, imagine the levels of targeting that could be achieved if people had a whole other life in a virtual world. You’d be able to target with such precision that there would be very little room for error. Whilst that gives people like Nick Clegg a headache regarding privacy concerns for Meta’s users, it provides a more interesting and relevant user experience, along with being a digital marketer’s dream!
The possibilities are vast and exciting and many of the examples above are already in development. No doubt there will be many challenges; the cost of implementing the ideas mentioned above will be substantial and there will need to be a lot more development before it becomes a viable option for many brands.
The demand for new and fresh content is already much larger than many smaller brands can keep up with and this will probably get worse as the content we consume becomes irrelevant at a much faster rate. The metaverse is definitely something to keep both physical eyes on.