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We asked consumers how they feel about all things Metaverse, and their answers may surprise you...
The latest tech gold rush is driving a flurry of headlines, conference sessions, strategy planning, YouTube videos, and blog posts, and the soundtrack to this mania is the ka-ching of lots and lots of FOMO money being thrown at getting in on whatever the metaverse is going to be.
As is the case in the hazy beginnings of any transformational change, consumer interest and excitement is lagging behind the frenzy in the tech and ad world. Gamers, who are already spending vast amounts of time in what turns out to be a sort of prequel to the metaverse in their virtual interactive social worlds, are primed for the metaverse. To attract the rest of us marketers are tasked with selling the promise before it becomes reality.
Buzzback research shows that awareness is high in both countries (73% UK, 70% US) but knowledge or understanding is low.
So, what is the metaverse? Since it’s still taking shape there is no single definition but Nation’s Restaurant News calls it “the next generation of social media, the new home of the digital loyalty program and a massive branding opportunity for restaurants of all sizes.” Early adopters like Wendy’s, Taco Bell, Chipotle, Panera, Burger King, and McDonald’s are already creating promotional strategies and filing trademarks. Vice defines it as “a 3D model of the internet. Basically, a place parallel to the physical world, where you spend your digital life.” Wired describes it as “persistent virtual worlds that continue to exist even when you're not playing—as well as augmented reality that combines aspects of the digital and physical worlds.”
For companies looking for something new to create and/or sell, the metaverse is a dream come true. The metaverse is immersive, interactive, and interoperable, and requires investment in infrastructure, hardware, economic systems, virtualization tools, and marketing strategies galore. And the metaverse promises to enhance almost every industry and aspect of life, like pain management, treating PTSD or phobias, virtual travel, digital fashion, socializing, democracy and community building, learning, job training, safety and accident prevention, work, and more.
Expect to hear A LOT about how “now is the time” to right the wrongs of current tech and digital innovations plaguing society at this early stage of the metaverse. As VCs, governments, developers, creatives, and marketers navigate their way through the foggy early stages, we’ll be watching, talking to consumers, and taking the pulse of the metaverse.