The Metaverse has gone from a stretch of human imagination, featured in mostly fictional books & movies, to a promising leap of technology. It will be a mirror of what’s happening in the real world, and innovation & adaptability will be just as important for businesses to thrive. With global brands now advocating for the introduction of the Metaverse, the advertising industry is transforming towards this new virtual reality faster than ever.
Within the past few years, augmented reality has been tested and integrated into different Google tools, including Google Maps, Google Shopping, Youtube & display ads, and AR-based Search. Although keywords-based searching behaviour remains the most popular, recent years have seen a strong increase in voice & visual search. This year also saw Google launching their latest AI-based search engine technology, Multitask Unified Model (MUM). MUM improved their search engine’s ability to understand queries across various format types including audios, photos, & videos, bringing Google Search one step closer to immersing itself in the Metaverse.
Anyone with an Oculus 2 headset can now take a quick dive in Facebook Horizon, a beta 3D virtual world, to get a feel of the Metaverse. Built to be “the heart of social metaverse”, Horizon users are able to set up their virtual Avatar, discover its worlds of interests, and connect with each other. With zero physical or geographical boundaries, it is easier than ever for brands to interact with users inside the Metaverse. Digital shops & destinations are being set up by apparel brands like Nike or Levi’s, with product placement designed to be less intrusive and highly native to the experience.
Not long ago in 2020, Snapchat also introduced its AR-based Lens Web Builder, a tool that allows Brands to easily build interactive AR Lenses to enhance user engagement. Just recently, their famous Bitmoji avatar creating tool has also been upgraded to a 3D format, with added realism through various poses, branded virtual clothes and backgrounds to choose from.
Out-of-home advertising in the Metaverse will mimic real-world ad space, with inventory from digital billboards to banners on running vehicles. Together with the evolution of Metaverse comes various concerns, with worries the immersive experience could potentially worsen human’s physical & mental health, relationships, digital privacy, & other problems that already existed in the 2D world.
Besides early adaptation to this trend, it is just as important for businesses to make a positive impact on people’s lives outside the Metaverse. While many Brands are rushing to arrive early in this virtual world, many others will change lives by foreseeing the potential issues that come with it, and tackling the ‘meta-challenges’ when they arrive.
Reach out to your ADMATICian for more information about how your brand can leverage emerging ‘meta-opportunities’.