In a fully immersive environment, what does content creation look like?
Facebook (Meta), Epic Games, Microsoft… Every tech giant wants to build the metaverse. Even consumer brands want a piece of the action — last week, we covered a bit of what they have been doing in their early attempts to conquer this new frontier of the internet.
It’s already interesting from an end consumer point-of-view, but it’s just as enthralling coming from a marketing perspective. What does content production look like in the metaverse, and how are agencies even going to make it happen?
As the metaverse starts to take shape, there are massive infrastructural overhauls required that might challenge the very idea of what we understand digital content production to mean.
One of the key things to note is that metaverse users are supposed to have an individual agency — everyone can be doing their own separate activities, be it interacting with others or even just standing in the corner.
If we’re talking about content consumption, say reading an article. We scroll on a screen now. But in the metaverse, will the experience be like reading the morning paper in real life?
In the context of ads, we can scroll away or use an ad-blocker on our browser for an uninterrupted experience now. But does it mean we’re supposed to actually walk away from pesky pop ups?
It’s evident that a new set of skills are required to build metaverse content that converts even in its new evolved forms.
Right now, it seems like that content creation in the metaverse is leaning towards what major gaming companies have been doing for years — world-building. There’s less on content consumption and more about creating experiences.
The US-based Mexican grill restaurant held its annual “Boorito” event on Roblox to commemorate Halloween last year — becoming the first chain to open a virtual restaurant. In past years, customers dressed in costume at the stores were usually entitled to a free or discounted burrito, but they made it a virtual-only event in 2021.
Users can dress their avatars up as either Burrito Mummy, Chip Bag Ghost, Guacenstein and more upon their visit to the Chipotle restaurant in the metaverse and then move to the Chipotle Boorito Maze to complete tasks there and be rewarded with exclusive Chipotle-themed Roblox items
For the first 30,000 visitors to the cashier every day between 28 and 31 October, they were given a promo code for a free entree that could be redeemed on their site and mobile app. Unfortunately, in-person customers dressed up would not receive any free items.
As a company that sells skateboarding apparel and gear, they partnered with Roblox to launch “Vans World”, a virtual skatepark where users can try new tricks and earn points by skating past waffle-shaped floating coins.
They can use the points to get items such as virtual shoes and skateboard customisations. They can also use Robux, the Roblox currency, to purchase more specialised virtual items, such as customisable shoes.
As one of the most recognisable sports brands globally, they aim to turn sport and play into a lifestyle. In an attempt to achieve that goal, Nike has created a virtual community space named Nikeland, a place modelled after Nike’s headquarters, where visitors can participate in games such as tag, the floor is lava, and dodgeball with their friends. Moreover, they can also create their own mini-game to play with their friends,
It also comes with a digital showroom that enables visitors to dress their avatars in Nike-branded virtual apparel, expanding their revenue stream by not only relying on physical and online sales but the metaverse too.
Move over Paris, Milan, London, and New York; it’s the Metaverse’s time to shine! Recently, Decantraland, one of the leading Metaverse platforms, announced the first Metaverse Fashion Week is scheduled to take place in March 2022 — partnering with UNXD, a luxury marketplace that hosted Dolce & Gabbana’s first NFT collection.
The partnership was announced via Twitter, which can be seen below:
The luxury fashion house released an adventure-based game titled Louis the Game to commemorate its second centenary.
The game brings users to six different worlds with a character named Vivian, exploring the fashion house’s legacy and collecting monogram candles to access more levels. The character of Vivian can be dressed in a more customisable Louis Vuitton wear and accessories as you collect items and progress to different levels.
As the metaverse is the new kid on the block when it comes to marketing and advertising, most people are still trying to figure out its place and how to utilise it as we go along.
One of the pioneers is Metavision, an agency that specialises only in the metaverse. With the backing of the UK broadcaster, ITV, it has partnered with John Lewis, a department store, to craft experiences for customers.
Another example is Ocean Outdoor, which made headlines last year for auctioning three NFT billboards for approximately US$100,00, positioning itself as an ad agency and media owner for the metaverse.
With the nature of content changing, will we see a new breed of marketing agencies that are part software developers and part creatives? Or perhaps gaming giants will swallow up the advertising and media industry as lines between our real and virtual lives blur.
Ultimately, a crop of specialised agencies in the metaverse will emerge — similar to specialised social media agencies that had appeared a decade earlier — helping brands to navigate the uncharted waters of this new territory.
As with any new technology, it will ultimately be up to the users to decide what works and what doesn’t — the content of the metaverse will be no different. The innovative users and first movers will get to show us what the future will end up looking like.