Metaverse: the new frontier of business and digital marketing – Part 1
Metaverse has been talked about for some time now as the promise of a world that will allow those who populate it to live, create and interact in a virtual environment, just as real and meaningful as the real world. In short, a great opportunity for companies that will be able to equip themselves with a distinctive strategy, based on brand identity.
Are we sure we really know what the Metaverse is?
The term ‘Metaverse’ was coined by Neal Stephenson in 1992 in his science fiction novel ”Snow Crash”. In the book, the Metaverse is described as a place where technology and information are used to enhance the imagination and creativity of users, giving them the opportunity to create and live new experiences that are not possible in real life.
Today, the term Metaverse has become the buzzword to describe the time when technology and virtual/augmented reality will enable the creation of virtual worlds that will be just as meaningful and immersive as the real world.
Where do we stand?
At the moment, the technology for the development of the Metaverse is still at an early stage, although it is evolving rapidly. Even Meta, which has claimed authorship, is not yet ready and is behind schedule compared to the expected development.
There are some platforms that are experimenting and implementing some of the fundamental elements of a Metaverse, such as virtual and augmented reality, blockchain and artificial intelligence.
However, there is still no clear definition of what constitutes a Metaverse and many technological challenges still need to be solved to create a fully immersive and interconnected environment.
What are the main features of the Metaverse?
The Metaverse uses virtual reality technology to create an immersive, interactive environment where users can interact in real time with people, objects and immersive environments. Interaction, between users and with the virtual environment, occurs intuitively, using different inputs, such as body movement, touch and voice, allowing multiple users to create an immersive social experience in real time, through their own virtual character.
The use of artificial intelligence technologies enables the Metaverse to react and adapt to user interactions, improving the overall user experience.
The Metaverse often uses blockchain technology to ensure the security, transparency and ownership of user data. In addition, the adoption of 5G technology will enable higher data throughput and reduced latency time, making the Metaverse experience even more smooth and interactive.
The Metaverse has its own virtual economy where users can buy, sell and trade virtual goods and services. It is designed to be accessible from anywhere and with a wide range of devices, such as PCs, game consoles, VR headsets and smartphones.
Therefore, talking about Metaverse means including all these main features, which include interaction between people and the environment, increased experience and data security.
Of course, as more and more advanced technologies are developed, the Metaverse is likely to become more sophisticated and accessible, offering users ever more engaging and immersive experiences.
What are the business opportunities offered by the Metaverse, though?
The new virtual universe is attracting the attention of many companies and offers many business opportunities in various sectors. The sectors that today can benefit most from the Metaverse are:
- E-commerce: the immersive shopping experience, such as the possibility of virtually trying on products, makes online shopping more attractive, resulting in increased online sales.
- Customer Experience: in the Metaverse it is possible to create interactive and engaging marketing experiences to promote a company’s brand, products and services.
- Training and education: in the Metaverse it is possible to create interactive and engaging training and education experiences, offering business opportunities for companies in the training sector, but not only.
- Real Estate: The Metaverse offers new opportunities for virtual real estate sales by creating immersive virtual tours of homes and properties.
- Entertainment and Live Events: companies can use the Metaverse to offer new ways for entertainment, such as virtual games and concerts, as well as create and organise virtual live events, offering consumers new opportunities for entertainment and socialising.
- Art and Media: The Metaverse offers new opportunities for the creation of original artwork and media content for the virtual environment.
These are just a few examples of the market segments that have the greatest opportunities for use and business in the Metaverse, but undoubtedly with the evolution of technology and the virtual universe, the areas could be even greater.
However, to avoid falling into simpler solutions that do not provide the interactivity and experience that the Metaverse offers, it is necessary to have a distinctive strategy that respects the brand identity and the objectives that the company wants to achieve, thus avoiding exchanging a simple virtual reality for the Metaverse.
In the next article we will see what the opportunities and advantages of the Metaverse are, and how to use this new reality for business.