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Monday, July 15, 2024

Metaverse: Where We’ve Been & Where We’re Going

Marketers should pay close attention to how the metaverse develops because it will have a significant impact on how society operates and conducts business.

Organizations and businesses are stepping into the metaverse even though its infrastructure is still being built.

Over the past few years, our civilization has undergone many changes, but none are quite as significant as the metaverse.

When Mark Zuckerberg revealed “Meta” as Facebook’s new parent corporation in 2021, the discussion of the long-term societal effects of such an immersive social platform erupted.

And with good cause.

Up until now, the concepts of virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR), smart glasses, social media, and cryptocurrencies have all existed independently but in close relation.

These moving pieces are combined by the metaverse to produce a potent tool for both corporations and marketers.

This realm has no physical bounds, which is appealing to individuals seeking a more expansive perspective.

What is the future of the metaverse concept and how did it develop?

Let’s investigate.

How Virtual Reality Got Its Start With Online Gaming

Over the past 20 years, the idea of virtual reality and augmented reality has gradually crept into popular society. The first to use it and incorporate it into many platforms was the video game industry.

Games like Fortnite (2017) and Pokémon Go (2016) focus on utilizing these technologies to bring people together through their apps.

One of the most popular and lucrative augmented reality games is called Pokémon Go.

Its meteoric rise to fame in 2016 signaled a new phase in the assimilation of augmented reality into our daily lives. The actual and digital worlds come together in augmented reality.

Fortnite, a virtual reality game using avatars to represent players, lets people fight against each other in real time and attend events held in that particular metaverse.

These two highly popularized games helped introduce society to the concept of “extended reality” (XR).

Extended or mixed reality describes any situations when there is a combination of the actual and the virtual. This applies to forms of virtual and augmented reality.

Users’ experiences are made more immersive by XR, which also blurs the line between what is produced by technology and reality.

This fusion of realities opens up countless opportunities for combining various technologies to produce a more comprehensive and immersive user experience.

Is The Average Consumer Ready For The Metaverse?

Marketing and the majority of society will be pushed further into digital innovation and immersion by the metaverse.

However, are customers prepared? The new technology have delighted early adopters, but what about everyday consumers?

In the next two to five years, more than 70% of customers plan to use the metaverse in contexts other than gaming, according to a poll Accenture performed in late 2022 among 9,000 consumers worldwide.

Customers’ expectations for the metaverse in gaming and non-gaming situations, however, can be extremely different. Non-gaming users, according to the report, concentrate more on the benefits of technology than on the technologies themselves.

In other words, customers will visit the metaverse if it offers benefits for their “real” lives, such as facilitating interactions with friends and family, shopping, and completing particular activities faster.

Regular customers see the metaverse as a brand-new tool that will enable them to accomplish their goals.

The Metaverse Is Closer Than Ever Before – In Fact, It’s Already Here

By 2030, corporations might make $5 trillion from the metaverse, according to a McKinsey & Company analysis.

Although the metaverse is still in its infancy, there are many options available right now.

Companies that are native to the metaverse, like CryptoMotors, profit from creating and reselling digital assets for the metaverse.

Additionally, more conventional businesses are using the metaverse to benefit their clients.

Both in the physical world and the metaverse, the owner of the dual homes will be able to welcome visitors.
With its Meta Residence One project, real estate company ONE Sotheby’s constructs a physical house alongside a virtual replica and sells both the virtual and physical houses simultaneously.

Even if metaverse commerce may not be a good fit for your business, the potential of using the metaverse as an advertising and marketing channel is endless.

As average consumers are looking for value and enhanced experience from the metaverse, it’s important for marketers to think beyond the technologies, and instead focus on how to better fulfill the customers’ needs in this virtual world.

How ChatGPT Will Affect The Metaverse

Although generative AI has recently dominated news about the metaverse, most notably ChatGPT from OpenAI, the development and uptake of the metaverse continue.

In reality, ChatGPT’s growth will contribute to the metaverse being an even livelier environment.

Digital games include non-player characters, or NPCs, for a while now.

NPCs do not, as of yet, possess the “intelligence” necessary to engage in genuine, unscripted conversation with players. That will change as a result of AI technologies like GPT-4, which runs ChatGPT.

Visit Character.ai where you may build virtual characters with “personalities” or just communicate with them in one-on-one or group settings to get a taste of how this interaction between human characters and computer-generated characters would look like.

Consider those characters as avatars with voices and faces in the metaverse. In addition to speaking, they can also act and behave in ways that are exclusive to their own “personalities.”

For instance, the AI companion app Replika already enables users to create their own chatbots, customize them with apparel and accessories from the Replika store, and use augmented reality to enjoy their chatbots’ company in their bedrooms.

What To Expect From The Metaverse Next

You may anticipate seeing more hardware that is prepared for the metaverse in the future. Apple has already made investments in augmented reality, and its Apple Glasses virtual reality glasses may be released later this year.

Other tech behemoths like Meta, Google, and Amazon are all developing products to provide users with more immersive experiences.

Businesses currently use AR and VR to market and sell virtual items, including Burberry and Gucci. For their operations in the metaverse, restaurant brands like McDonald’s and Panera Bread have already applied for trademarks.

More businesses will be experimenting with fresh concepts in the metaverse to enhance client engagement and satisfaction.

A new trend that will start to emerge is the corporate metaverse, where companies use the metaverse to train and empower their employees, allowing them to collaborate with each other more effectively from anywhere in the world.

Marketers should pay close attention to how the metaverse is developing and changing.

Those who are skeptics risk missing out on a large amount of digital innovation that is poised to transform how society operates on a whole and conducts business.

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