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Utilising the Metaverse – 3 ways for marketers to use the Metaverse

Image source: (Facebook, 2022)

Utilising the Metaverse – 3 ways for marketers to use the Metaverse

The idea of being able to reach your loved ones at the click of a finger has long been the best part about social media – keeping in touch and staying close. But what if we told you that you could be anywhere in the world and still be able to meet up with friends and family…virtually! In October of 2021, Facebook announced a major change to their company moving from “Facebook” to “Meta”. Meta as a parent company now holds all of the companies that once existed under Facebook and function much the same, except, Meta’s vision is to go beyond.

What is the Metaverse?

Arguably, Meta is one of tech’s greatest giants having monopolised a great proportion of Social Media and pushing through new ways of advertising, marketing and selling online. As part of its big announcement last year, Meta also announced the Metaverse – an augmented reality experience where users could enter an online universe through virtual reality functions and tools (you can read more about it here). With Meta’s Instagram and Facebook social media apps leading the way with Influencing and digital marketing, it’s no surprise that the Metaverse is a utility tool to further enhance consumer experiences and drive further consumption through the Metaverse. But how can we as marketers do this? How do we utilise and optimise the virtual reality experience?

3 ways to utilise the Metaverse for marketers

Everything is fast-paced and ever-changing, and marketers know that in order to stay relevant, they need to adapt quickly. Adapting to new ways of marketing whether traditional or digital is top priority for anyone in this industry. We have found three specific ways to utilise the Metaverse to your advantage:

 

1. Extending your brand –into a virtual world

In March of 2021, Gucci announced a pair of virtual sneakers that were exclusively sold online – and, could also only be “worn” online. The idea here was to continue Gucci’s visibility and desirability in a world where anything is trendy. The Gucci Virtual 25 could also move with the user and be worn in Roblox outfits, a popular AR game. In doing so, Gucci cemented its footprint in the world of AR, made money from purchases because it was a “Gucci” purchase and did not have to physically produce any product. The brand was sold, exclusively online in a digital format.

Creating virtual replicas or new designs of products virtually is a great brand extension and strategic way to optimise the Metaverse to your advantage. It increases visibility and desirability both online and in real life.

Extending your brand –into a virtual world

2. Integrate your brand into the Metaverse experience

Branding in gaming has been widely popularised (read more about it here), especially on sports games produced by the NFL, the NBA and notoriously, FIFA. By mimicking the real experience of ad-boards, visuals and commentator announcements about sponsorships, brands like Coca-Cola, Emirates and Nike have all gotten into virtual branding and advertising through gaming quite early on.

The Metaverse can bring this to life in an even greater way where businesses can further integrate their branding into the world of AR. Through the Metaverse, your brand can act as a “person” or “user”, adopt a personality and somewhat become a celebrity.. Your imagination is the only limitation to how your brand could be integrated into this new community of people.

TBWA’s Asia head of innovation, Tessa Conrad, mentions Wendy’s as “one of my favourite examples of brands exploring the metaverse over the past couple years”. They have really immersed themselves in the gaming landscape across Fortnite, Twitch and many others and not just as a one-off marketing campaign, but clearly driven by a wider strategy. (Campaign Asia, 2021)

Integrate your brand into the Metaverse experience

3. Give your store a virtual reality showroom that can be viewed through the Metaverse

As an extension of Meta’s consumer branch, setting up shop in AR might just be the coolest way for marketers to utilise the AR universe for greater consumption. Since the idea of Metaverse marketing is to establish brand identity and awareness, sales are likely to be driven through popularity and desirability. Targeting the right audiences and establishing a sense of “need” for the brand will undoubtedly expand business growth. Further, what virtual showrooms offer is the ability for consumers to first “see” products before going in-store to shop for them. Without being able to tangibly have a product (yet) can further increase desirability while consumers anxiously wait for the product to release in real life.  QT reports on how the Emotional UX design of many virtual reality games and universes like the Metaverse, really drive up real-life desirability for products.

The expansion of virtual and augmented reality is expected see major growth with the Metaverse. Over the last decade, Meta, previously known as Facebook, has dramatically changed the way we as consumers think, feel and need. The Metaverse is a great extension of what already exists and will really give users and consumers alike a new place to “live” and “experience” what’s out there. For marketers, getting in on the Metaverse is a must. No matter the platform, there is always room for optimisation in any space.

To learn more about Meta, click here.