If the metaverse is to be the next big thing for brand building, companies are going to have to do a lot more than sell non-fungible tokens (NFTs) of Nike sneakers or Gucci bags.
The Metaverse – whether it lands in a decentralized blockchain-based world like Decentraland, or a strictly controlled Facebookland built by Meta – is a place of experience.
The goal of bringing an avatar into the metaverse will always be to do something. It could be socializing or playing games or going to virtual concerts or UFC fights, but avatars are not models. In a successful metaverse, they will be a version of you in a different digital world.
See also: What is a metaverse and why do we organize a fashion show?
Auction houses Christie’s and Sotheby’s have gotten into cryptocurrency with both feet as NFT sellers – Beeple’s $ 69 million NFT collage guarantees it. But now Christie’s is taking it a step further by bringing a virtual version of its New Bond Street headquarters in London to the Decentraland.
The five-story structure will be both a showcase and a selling point for digital art – from NFT artwork to Old Masters going under the hammer – but it’s also a meeting place.
“We see spaces like Decentraland as the next frontier in digital art where artists, collectors and viewers can engage with each other from anywhere in the world and showcase art that is fundamentally rare and unique, but accessible to all for viewing, ”Michael Bouhanna, said Sotheby’s sales manager when the facility opened in June.
More so, it is part of a larger area of Decentraland, the main decentralized metaverse. It is located in the Voltaire Art District, an area that will be populated with artistic showcases, making virtual Sotheby’s a destination as much as a showcase.
Noteworthy is Samsung’s new – and temporary – addition to Decentraland.
The Samsung 837X Metaverse Experience is a digital take on the super pop-up store he built at 837 Washington Street in New York’s fashionable Meatpacking District to showcase the products and other offerings he debuted at. CES Las Vegas Show – the world’s largest and most important technology exhibition and showcase, where electronics brands tend to make their biggest annual announcements and reveals.
Calling it “an experiential playground for people to discover the incredible possibilities when technology and culture collide,” the company said in an announcement that “as part of this next-level experience, guests will undertake a journey where technology meets art, fashion, music and sustainability.
The goal, according to the announcement, is to allow “users to explore experiences unlocked with Samsung technology.”
The phrasing might be a bit over the top, but that’s the gist. What Samsung has built is not an auction house or a marketplace, but an experience. It’s similar to what the Louis Vuitton fashion house did for its founder’s 200th anniversary, which was a fun experience exploring its roots and history. NFT giveaways were part of the marketing event rather than its core. Samsung is doing something similar, offering three levels of rare avatar clothing – a running jacket, helmet, and shoes.
The Samsung 837X has three basic components. The heart is the Connectivity Theater, a showcase for the electronics giant’s CES stage, as well as a space that allows’ guests to learn more about the powerful experiences that flow from seamless connectivity and personalized solutions. powered by Samsung technology ”.
But it won’t necessarily attract people who probably aren’t already buyers. There’s also a personalization scene, which despite its name is an event location that broadcast a live DJ-hosted dance party held at the real Samsung 837 in New York City.
Then there’s Sustainability Forest, which highlights a campaign launched by Samsung to plant 2 million trees with an NFT company providing proof of planting. But there is also a portal to a land with millions of trees and a “mythical encounter” – in other words, a game.
“We’re excited to tell our stories of connectivity, sustainability and personalization in a new way, in a one-of-a-kind space,” said Michelle Crossan-Matos, senior vice president of marketing and corporate communications at Samsung Electronics America. “The Metaverse allows us to transcend physical and spatial boundaries to create unique virtual experiences that could not happen otherwise.”
Other brands combine commerce and experience in what a Harvard Business Review article published this month, “How Brands Can Enter the Metaverse,” described as “social commerce.” It’s already a $ 36 billion industry, the article notes.
Also read: In the Metaverse, NFTs can buy experiences, luxuries, and eyes
“The business applications of the metaverse are further enhanced by the new behaviors that are proliferating around the purchase of products and services directly from social experiences,” according to the report.
“Decentraland is an entire 3D virtual world owned by its users, allowing them to create virtual structures – from theme parks to galleries – and then charge users to visit them,” the report also states.
Sharmistha Dubey, CEO of dating app producer Match Groups, said on a November earnings conference call that she plans to incorporate the metaverse as “a piano bar where digital people congregate, but they actually play their piano at home and play with others. . “
She said it could be “transformative in the way people meet and get to know each other on a dating or social discovery platform and a lot more akin to the way people interact in the real world. “.