As a creatively rich digital medium, the metaverse holds a lot of promise for those looking to expand their brand, find different ways to express their brand values and attract new audiences. While you’re probably busy thinking about Q1 2023, don’t forget to explore your options within the metaverse.
Why the metaverse could form a part of your e-commerce strategy: a recap
As we’ve previously covered, e-commerce and digital marketing are pivotal for any business when it comes to increasing brand awareness amongst consumers. Providing you are marketing to the right people, increased brand awareness and engagement leads to enhanced profits.
The metaverse offers copious amounts of virtual real estate for you to set up store fronts, create beautifully branded billboards, or hold events or exhibitions to carry out product showcases.
Moreover, these virtual marketing opportunities are interactive, enabling brands to adopt a customer-first approach that allows customers to interact with digital versions of products, allowing for a more engaging and immersive experience.
1. Look at your audience. Who are they, where are they, and what will engage them?
Data analysis and customer insights are hugely important when it comes to deciding on new brand campaigns and how they’re positioned. Before deciding exactly how you want to shape your marketing in the metaverse, you need to understand who your audience are, where you can find them, and what they find engaging.
Beyond just demographics and geographics, are they the sorts of customers that are easily incentivized and are reactive to rewards? Or do they prefer to watch videos or listen to podcasts? All of these are questions you should know the answers to. This will help you decide on the type of architecture you create.
2. Assess the landscape and lay out all of your real estate options
As we’ve already discovered, there are a huge number of ways you could get involved in the metaverse from a marketing perspective. If you’re a retail brand, a store might seem the most appropriate, but if you’re an airline or work in automotive for example, you may find that a combination of VR and AR work best within a virtual experience.
Here are just a few of them:
- Product placements or billboards in virtual games
- Virtual concerts within the metaverse
- Virtual immersive experiences
- Virtual retail stores, just like this
If you want some inspiration, we’ve collated some brands utilising virtual reality within their marketing strategies here.
3. Establish a goal
Now you’ve assessed your options and worked out where your audience are, take a step back. What are you trying to achieve?
Q1 can often be a quiet time for sales, so you might have a new product or range launch planned. Emperia has worked with Burberry to do just this, launching a brand new bag in a virtual store.
Your goal could be to mark a defining moment in your business’s lifetime, just like Bloomingdale’s. Or, you might be trying to upsell by enticing people beyond their usual go-to products (keep reading for more on this) and increase AOV (average order value). Maybe you’re looking to focus on increasing brand awareness and gain some top-of-the-funnel data to nurture over time in a longer term plan?
Ensure you have a SMART goal so that you can tailor your virtual experience to achieve that.
4. Consider add-ons like gamification and AR
Augmented reality combined virtual reality features can also help to make your brand more accessible. For retailers, AR Try On and virtual reality simulators in-store can give your non-metaverse audience an exclusive taste of the virtual experience, creating experiences that can be shared on social media and igniting interest in other potential customers across the globe to try out your products. You could even add staff avatars into your metaverse store to enhance the user experience and provide virtual guides to help customers around.
If you’ve decided to try and upsell, or intrigue new customers, you could add some hunts or challenges to incentivise people to explore your entire experience in detail, increasing the length of time they spend in the experience and the amount of engagements they make, ultimately enhancing their experience and driving you more sales.
5. Would a partnership or collaboration make this campaign more effective or viable?
You can also hold events or exhibitions in partnership with other businesses to generate activities for your users to take part in and make their experience memorable and unique, whether it be in the form of a concert, art gallery exhibition or a fashion show.
Partnering with a brand is not only hugely beneficial from a brand awareness point of view (the ability to tap into the other brand’s audience), but it can split costs and drive more traffic (double the marketing after all).
The metaverse holds a lot of promises for all types of business, from established famous brands like Dolce and Gabbana to smaller brands, digital brands and businesses that are just starting out.