Metaverse & NFT platforms could offer game-changing experiences

Authored by Vishnu Sharma, Founder & CEO, Efficacy Worldwide

Innovating your marketing strategy with Metaverse and NFT platforms could be the next growth phase for companies. But marketers need to be balanced in their approach while providing an immersive experience in Metaverse.

In a recent corporate meeting, the leader of a multi-national company announced that the team’s next meeting would probably be in Metaverse, where each participant may have his/her avatars, and the group can enjoy the office party in the virtual world. The virtual space is fast evolving and Metaverse is a strong reason behind the change. We are all compelled to think about the innumerable possibilities that the online world offers. Hence, a revolution of sorts is underway, where companies are already working to create endless possibilities in the virtual world. And the scope is sector agnostic. Several examples tell about the potential.  

Microsoft’s recent acquisition of Activision Blizzard for a whopping USD68.7 billion speaks volumes of that potential. Activision offers gaming enthusiasts several opportunities to play in the virtual world, including the famous Halo, Warcraft and Candy Crush. In another example, Metaverse company Republic Realm has bought a land parcel as part of a venture it intends to develop with games company Atari. People can buy and sell land assets in the virtual world. The company launched its Fantasy Islands in August 2021, a cluster of 100 islands with villas that buyers can ‘visit’, remodel, use to show off their digital assets. 

In other development, UK-based fashion company, PrettyLittleThing has announced the launch of its ‘virtual girl model’ that will model clothes on the company’s website and also ‘show a range of emotions to truly react with the customer’. The company that is known for working with celebrities and influencers has been innovative and progressive in adapting the new virtual model. Several other brands, including Adidas, Nike, GUCCI, OTB are now operating in the virtual world to entice their customers.

But what is all the technobabble?

Let’s just read in simple terms. Metaverse is a blockchain-based platform that offers an immersive experience of the virtual and digital space. It is fast becoming a social space, where one can hang around with friends, shop and also host parties. The announcement by various companies has set in motion a gold rush and a race to grab the fortunes lying untouched. For transactions, specifically, metaverse uses non-fungible tokens (NFTs) to create digital assets.

NFTs are like digital mini-versions of your products or services. They exist in the virtual space, and one can trade them in an open market. Non-fungible tokens are a type of cryptocurrency that is used to represent unique digital assets within an application or game. The most famous of these tokens are CryptoKitties. Essentially, they are digital representations of physical collectables with some sort of predetermined value.

What’s there for marketers?

Brands are always looking for ways to innovate and engage with customers. Metaverse is just another way to market ourselves in the virtual world. But how can you use VR without an actual tool or engine to action this? Enter: NFT platforms and metaverse marketing.

NFT or non-fungible token platforms offer a unique marketing opportunity because they allow brands to create their digital assets that represent products, memberships and rewards. These virtual items can be traded on an open market and will never be worth any less than what they were originally valued at. 

What does this mean for brands? It means that now, your marketing strategy has endless potential! There could be creative ways to incorporate NFTs into one’s marketing strategy. 

It will be a good idea to explore the role of non-fungible tokens in marketing and how they complement the creation and development process for new products and services. How can companies utilize blockchain technology to optimize their marketing strategy and transform their business model for the future?

What comes next?

There are two ways to use NFTs and apply them in the Metaverse for marketing, for now:

1. Setting up a virtual e-commerce store to showcase products and people to have a real feel.

2. Engaging with the target audience and having real conversations.

NFTs are perfect for an e-commerce store because they can be used as rewards or for limited editions of products. They also have the potential to increase customer conversions because customers are more likely to buy virtual goods than physical goods. If one is interested in using NFTs for advertising purposes, he can create digital assets that represent his brand and then engage with his audience through branded games, contests or giveaways. These branded digital assets can create a sense of community among your followers and encourage them to interact with one another on your behalf. 

The evolving ecosystem can specifically benefit content creators, who are eying for more influence in the online space. It also means that marketers and content creators who create a variety of content have so much to earn and gain. For example, Twitter will possibly allow people to tip their favourite content creators with bitcoin and will launch a fund to pay some users who host audio chat rooms on its Spaces feature. 

Metaverse’s distributed ledger uses digital identities and smart assets to create a peer-to-peer value exchange and offers a digital token to track and store value. Through the use of digital identities and smart assets, marketers can aim to create an open ecosystem for value transactions and smart contracts. But that is the future, and no one knows how this space will evolve. 

However, there could be a downside. Every user transaction or activity in the Metaverse is being monitored and tracked. Companies working on their metaverses will have complete control of their buyers’ space. Compared to a super glossy, super smooth world in Metaverse, there will remain a real offline world, where we will continue to face challenges like climate change, poverty, hunger and humanitarian crisis of catastrophic levels. Hence, marketers need to strike a balance between the immersive virtual world and the reality of the world we live in. As the space evolves, they need to tread carefully and think about the entry strategy. 

DISCLAIMER: The views expressed are solely of the author and does not necessarily subscribe to it.


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