The metaverse is in its infancy and already making headlines. Mark Zuckerberg has even gone as far as to say it’s the, “Biggest opportunity for modern business since the creation of the internet.”
So what is this next digital frontier that’s poised to transform all of our lives, anyway?
This simple definition from Bernard Marr describes it as, “a persistent, shared, 3D virtual space linked into a perceived virtual universe.” Futurist and metaverse expert Cathy Hackl categorises it as, “a convergence of our physical and digital lives.”
Businesses who understand how to engage with the metaverse and leverage its power can grow their reach, staying worlds (or even universes) ahead of the competition. These four jumping off points are a few of the most logical places to put your focus in the near future.
Engaging consumers in the metaverse isn’t just a potentially lucrative opportunity, it also defies the physical bounds of how you’re able to do so – something to think about as you plan your next marketing push.
For example, during a recent collaboration with Sephora, Meta’s Creative Shop was able to virtualise the sensory experience of perfume shopping. Neuroscientists and animators were able to bring the sensations directly to shoppers’ smartphones using colours and graphics that told the “scent story” behind the fragrance.
People in the metaverse will be able to buy apps and worlds to enjoy. And within those worlds, there will be things to buy – both digital and physical – as well as services and experiences.
Selling Physical and Virtual Goods
Vishal Shah, the VP of Metaverse, explains that “people in the metaverse will be able to buy apps and worlds to enjoy. And within those worlds, there will be things to buy – both digital and physical – as well as services and experiences.”
The more time we collectively spend within the metaverse, the more virtual goods our avatars and digital spaces will require. If you’re looking for your next product line, give some thought to what you might be able to eventually offer in these spaces.
For most people, it isn’t too much of a stretch to envision a virtual workplace. You get a meeting reminder and log in to your video conference platform of choice. Except when you do, instead of turning your camera on, you engage your digital avatar. The same might be true in coworking spaces or “in”-office days with your team. There are talks of doing entire conferences or training sessions within the metaverse to better engage with peers.
But what really has people keyed up are the concerts and other forms of entertainment with “metaverse” as the destination. Travis Scott has already headlined one such event hosted by Fortnite. The star power and sponsorship opportunities on the platform are just beginning to come into focus, so take notice.
Even an industry as decidedly physical as process manufacturing isn’t left out of the Metavere’s great expanse.
“Anheuser-Busch InBev, the world’s largest brewer, is using metaverse applications to dramatically improve its operations,” shares Bernard Marr. “They used Azure Digital Twins to create a complete digital model of their breweries and supply chain that syncs up in real-time with the physical environment. The model enables brewmasters to adjust the brewing process and conduct quality control.”
In the end, the metaverse can have all the meaning you want for your business. But it ultimately still comes down to solidifying and deepening your customer connections. Take the time to experiment within the metaverse now, so when the time comes to make a full launch, you’ll be ready to deliver true meaning and value.