....but an unexplored field of opportunities and growth
Some would consider the Metaverse as the 3D Internet. In some extent, that’s true: you can connect via various devices with lots of people and contents, in different areas through immersive worlds. This even includes virtual reality, and much more is on its way, with olfactive or other sensorial add-ons.
But thinking forward, this should be much powerful than that and integrate the potential of artificial intelligence and NFTs.
In its simplest definition, Metaverse is a new format of Internet integrating three-dimensional virtual environments. In other words, what you currently do on Internet, your avatar does it in a three-dimensional space that mimics reality called Metaverse. But this is the simplest definition.
Considering NFTs (Non-Fungible Tokens) potential, Metaverse may be much more than that. Cambridge Dictionary define NFT as a unique unit of data (ie the only one existing of its type) that links to a particular piece of digital art, music, video, etc. and that can be bought and sold. This means that Metaverse may be a new place to generate offer, demand and growth.
Metaverse has generated a lot of buzz already and this should even explode along the next few years. The main challenge for the metaverse will be to go from a vision held by a few to something that can shape the way we live and work.
‘Thinking about Apple and how Steve Jobs has changed our daily lives by creating the smartphone, we can just have a tiny idea about what can be done with the Metaverse.’ Comments Marinette Dalbard, CSD at BrandTrends.
Of course, the Metaverse offers immersive experience. This goes from video games (Sims and Second Life exists since a while, Minecraft, Roblox, World of Warcraft, Fortnite, Animal Crossing and many others illustrates how this is relevant for players) to shopper experience using augmented or virtual reality, including usages for VR sport or even health diagnosis.
But this can also be a force for good.
The type of usage we’ll define for the Metaverse is the key for success. We should keep focus on facilitating and improving the quality of life now and for the future. In both the real and virtual worlds, we need to be more deliberate, more proactive, to create the culture that fits with our ethos and vision.
We need to understand the whole consumer / individual journey to know where it makes sense for the metaverse to take place.
Of course it is highly relevant at work, considering more and more people are working remotely for at least part of their time. But can you imagine your avatar going for shopping, trying different types of clothes, offering at the same time the ability to find the good shapes from your sofa?
And do you remember the time when everyone was talking about big data? Depending on the type and the amount of data we’ll leverage for creating new virtual experiences, Metaverse may go up to creating a virtual Earth and test thousands of combinations to reduce the climate change in a few months. Considering the rush for finding solutions in a short period, this would save precious time – and money.
With all the opportunities come strong responsibility. This definitely represents the biggest challenge for brands in order to define how to embrace Metaverse and be sure to make it a sustainable way of growth.
The simplest access would be to replicate online our offline usages and behaviors through our avatars. But is this really what brands want to come up with?
On top, we now have the Internet background to guide us. Of course, it has brought a lot of value for most of us – and this is not the end. But it also comes with negative effects, such as harassment, disinformation, scamming… We have an opportunity to learn from this experience and do better.
‘Keeping it short, Metaverse is a new opportunity to define a clear vision of what we want to bring to our real world.’ Summarize Marinette Dalbard.
This implicates to start with a why, to make sure that our virtual actions will support our offline lives. This includes goods and services but also social and environmental responsibility.
Nike, l’Oréal, Disney, Gucci, Puma, Mc Donald’s have massively invested on NFTs already, in order to keep an edge on virtual intellectual properties. Another sign that it is now the right time for brands to think about how they want to influence the future and make a better, sustainable - and financially appetent - world!