Will The Metaverse Live Up To The Hype?

Will The Metaverse Live Up To The Hype?

In this guest post, Gustavo Quiroga (pictured below), APAC general manager at Mobiquity, asks the question we’re all wondering – is the much vaunted metaverse all hype and little substance?

There’s no denying the metaverse is still evolving, but is it being over-hyped? Research shows the use of the term has skyrocketed across boardrooms globally. However, despite the hype, there’s still a profound gap in its universal definition. The lack of universal definition has the power to hinder adoption and subsequent market potential. To this end, it’s important that industry takes initiative to define the parameters of the metaverse’s use.

There are rumours that the metaverse will replace the internet in its entirety, others claim it is the future of all brand interactions, eliminating the use of physical environments as a whole — particularly in sectors such as retail. So, what exactly is the metaverse? Well to start, it should not be called a destination or a place; but instead referred to as a new channel through which we will interact with customers and each other.

Having extensively explored the metaverse’s potential to date, we believe the channel is an evolving convergence of digital (e.g. online), virtual and physical worlds that is made possible by any combination of enabling technologies such as virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR), NFTs, crypto and more. The outcome of which is a world experience greater than anyone one of these worlds on its own. It’s important to remember that if the experience isn’t any better than it is in the physical world, we will never see a mass adoption of the metaverse.

The ‘Uberisation’ — or mass adoption — of the metaverse will begin with understanding how we build content that delivers on, and exceeds expectations of users. Similarly to Uber’s dilemma, a large part of the challenge will be creating a ‘supply’ of content within the metaverse to then attract demand. This relies on innovators and evangelists to take the lead and create truly out-of-this-world experiences that captivate and retain users.

To this end, the metaverse should be used as a super-channel through which brands can build and offer new hyper-immersive customer experiences. One could say, it’s similar to the way in which ‘social media’ has become a channel, with the multiple metaverses emerging — such as Decentraland— likened to networks such as Twitter and Facebook. So, like social media, brands need to distinguish a strategy to develop and engage users in a way that resonates and exceeds expectations.

Merging the physical and digital world is not new to brands. However, the metaverse is one-of-a-kind in that it introduces a virtual dimension too, bringing the best of the best together. What used to be small add-on digital touchpoints has now evolved into a digital twin of reality to experience the art of the possible. So, rather than replacing physical experiences, the metaverse has become an extension to them.

Successful use cases are particularly prevalent across industries, including charities where incentives such as priceless non-fungible tokens (NFTs) have been developed to support new revenue streams. Earlier this year at MET:AMS the International Anti-Fur Coalition launched UNFUR, a campaign to end the cruelty of fur fashion in collaboration with Mobiquity and Hexaware. UNFUR identified and leveraged the metaverse as a substitute for real and faux fur use in fashion by creating a series of digital fashion pieces as NFTs (see lead image.)

UNFUR is an example of how audiences could sideline the need for harming animals in the physical world, while still appreciating fashion and more importantly helping raise funds for the charity in the virtual world, blending the two together to deliver a positive outcome. Similar use cases could be applied to world aid charities, who could use virtual reality (VR) headsets to demonstrate the true experience of beneficiaries who are struggling to find clean water.

Or, for example a surf life saving club is looking to raise money and creates a VR fundraiser where users can row at home on their rowing machine in exchange for donating funds. Such gamified experiences provide brands with not only a return on investment financially, but they also build a memorable and lasting relationship with each participant to create brand loyalty.

But this is only just scratching the surface of emerging digital channels such as the metaverse. New research anticipates the human sense of smell has the potential to be stimulated by vibrations, essentially creating a ‘digital nose’ for users. Should this come to fruition, the possibilities of the metaverse will truly become limitless in immersing users and becoming one step closer to eliminating the need to engage in the physical world.

We’re already living in the metaverse, people just don’t realise it yet. So, what’s the barrier to adoption? Demystifying the channel and understanding that we’re there already. We need to give people a reason to engage via the metaverse and we will only be able to do that by bringing together the multiple metaverses emerging and creating one “multi-verse” that becomes the go-to destination for unique and immersive brand experiences.

With the metaverse evolving at an accelerated pace, the opportunity to engage with your customers to create an immersive experience is now. The question brands need to ask shouldn’t be why but what should I do in the metaverse. Only then will we begin to see exciting new use cases that draw in audiences to help the channel live up to the hype.

 




Please login with linkedin to comment

Gustavo Quiroga metaverse Mobiquity

Latest News

Liz Wigmore & Foundation Team Migrate Into Omnicom’s Hearts & Science
  • Advertising

Liz Wigmore & Foundation Team Migrate Into Omnicom’s Hearts & Science

Omnicom’s bespoke media agency Foundation Australia will soon retire its brand and operate under the Hearts & Science banner. Hearts & Science has grown its agency proposition in this market by appointing Liz Wigmore as managing director. Omnicom Media Group is folding the whole Foundation Australia team – which numbers in the dozens – and […]

Mark Tompkins Adds Creative Power To Enthral
  • Advertising

Mark Tompkins Adds Creative Power To Enthral

Storytelling agency Enthral has bolstered its creative offering with the addition of Creative Director Mark Tompkins. Tompkins joins the agency with more than 20 years of experience and a who’s who of agencies in Australia and London on his CV, including TBWA, DDB, Clemenger and Ogilvy. Until now, all of Enthral’s creative work has relied […]