Marketing in the metaverse offers new opportunities to engage your audiences cleverly. Imagine competing for attention on a channel with far less competition. And a chance to connect with younger audiences, create an immersive and enjoyable brand experience, and capitalize on new revenue opportunities? There’s no better time to plan your first—or next—campaign.
If you’re starting to appreciate the promise of the metaverse, there’s just one question left to answer:
What should you do next?
In this article, we will help you start your metaverse marketing planning, which, in turn, will lead to new experiences for your audience.
- Base your metaverse marketing strategy on brand and audience fit.
- The rules of traditional advertising don’t necessarily apply to the metaverse.
- You can dabble immediately with direct revenue-generating activities.
- Contrary to popular belief, there is no shortage of developer and creator communities to leverage.
The goal is similar for most brands investing in metaverse marketing: create an immersive brand experience, establish trust, and entertain people. Here are seven tips to help piece together your strategy.
Establish Measurable Goals and Objectives
First, clearly define your goals and objectives (and document them):
- Do you want to raise awareness among a new audience?
- Are you looking to build more customer loyalty?
- Do you want to use the metaverse to innovate and test new products or concepts?
Marketing in the metaverse has few boundaries, so knowing what you want to accomplish helps guide your approach. Additionally, identify the right platforms based on brand fit. Start with research and experimenting across multiple platforms. For example, you can choose from several games and platforms to advertise or partner with, such as Roblox, Fortnite, Decentraland, Minecraft, and Meta’s Horizon Worlds.
Gucci, for example, tested across multiple platforms to understand where and how to best connect with their Gen Z audience. The results speak for themselves: in 2021, they launched a metaverse version of its real-life Gucci Garden on Roblox, and 19.9 million people (about the population of New York) visited within just two weeks. They’ve also partnered with platforms and are creating assets for metaverse-related games. Similar opportunities are available to smaller companies too.
Design Immersive Experiences to Drive Engagement
While this may seem obvious, it’s important to remember that traditional advertising rules don’t necessarily apply to the metaverse. Rather than grab consumers’ attention with flashy ads, you have a golden opportunity to build personalized, immersive experiences, such as games, virtual stores, etc., that consumers in the metaverse can genuinely enjoy. Personalization is essential across all marketing efforts as we prepare for a post-cookie world.
Vans launched an interactive skatepark in Roblox, executing their approach to perfection. Because Vans created a carefully thought out, engaging experience tailored to its target audience, over 48 million visitors have flocked to this virtual hub to earn points and redeem them for virtual apparel and customized virtual skateboards.
How Marketing Campaigns Yield ROI in the Metaverse
Improving brand awareness and engaging with your audience will yield a better ROI, but the metaverse presents opportunities to monetize your product or service. One example is direct-to-avatar sales of virtual products are already a whopping $54 billion market, and early adopters are taking advantage of the open playing field.
Marketers, you can be as creative as you want. Forever 21 sells a beanie in Roblox for less than a dollar, while Gucci sold a digital bag for over $4,000, which is more than the real-life version. Can you believe it!
Another exciting development is metaverse-to-offline opportunities. For example, Chipotle allowed Roblox players to exchange digital currency for rewards in real-life, offering burrito vouchers to the first 30,000 visitors to its metaverse restaurant. Free food? Yes, please!
Partnerships and Marketing in the Metaverse
Marketing in the metaverse sounds scary, but we can learn from our real-life counterparts. You want to find people and brands to work with who complement your strengths and weaknesses. However, success in the metaverse also requires an adaptable team to accept weird challenges and unorthodox tactics.
Developer and creator communities are here to help. Roblox has hundreds of thousands of folks in its community of developers who are actively developing new experiences and learning how to monetize. NASCAR, for example, partnered with Badimo, the developers of the popular game Jailbreak, to build a branded vehicle into the game for a ten-day event. The result was 24 million visits to Jailbreak.
The metaverse is opening the door for new service models, such as agencies opening their virtual studios and collaborations with celebrities and influencers. In 2021, Snoop Dogg built a “Snoopverse” in The Sandbox and released the first music video, which took place exclusively in the metaverse a few months later.
How to Reduce Risk with Your Metaverse Marketing
Consider the following inherent risks when marketing in the metaverse. We’ve already heard some disturbing reports of assault in the metaverse. And despite age restrictions for engaging in the metaverse, security measures are lacking, allowing for children to access inappropriate groups and content. These events prove you need content and community moderation for your brand.
Additionally, real-time, immersive events can develop quickly, so you must establish the proper protocols and scenario planning before a PR nightmare sneaks up on you.
Before any event or experience, create and promote rules of engagement and enforcement policies around customer experience, intellectual property management, user safety, data privacy, and misinformation.
Questions to keep in mind
The metaverse is still unknown. As you build out your strategy and allocate a budget to your marketing efforts, think about these critical questions; each will have a significant impact on the long-term development of the metaverse:
Interoperability – How will transferring avatars and assets across multiple worlds work in the metaverse, and how will that impact brands offering digital assets now?
Social and legal implications – How will the social contract and legal framework develop, particularly concerning engaging with and marketing to minors and ensuring user safety?
Data Management – How will first-party consumer data be stored, managed, and protected?
Post-cookie world – How can you engage your audience in the post-cookie world and create delightful, frictionless opt-in experiences?
Engage with Relevance in the Metaverse
The metaverse presents an exciting opportunity to engage with your audience in new ways, create immersive brand experiences, build customer loyalty, and access new paths to generating revenue. Show up early to gain traction with your creative ideas.
The B2B population is consuming media everywhere and anywhere: at home, at work, online and offline. The metaverse is no exception. Modern blended lifestyles make the right audience harder to reach. And without multichannel targeting, how will you communicate with people in the right place at the right time?
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