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Is it time for retailers to enter the metaverse?

An example of the metaverse and marketing is placing products, brands and experiences at appropriate points in the virtual world.

Meta chief Mark Zuckerberg sees the future of the internet as people working, playing and exploring in life-like virtual worlds using ever slimmer and more powerful headsets. — © AFP
Meta chief Mark Zuckerberg sees the future of the internet as people working, playing and exploring in life-like virtual worlds using ever slimmer and more powerful headsets. — © AFP

Another brand, this time Victoria Secret’s Happy Nation, has entered the metaverse. This news comes alongside many other teen retailers including Forever21, Pacsun and Boohoo. This is a further sign of the metaverse, at least the one conceived by Zuckerberg, is increasing in popularity.

Here the metaverse represents a highly interactive three-dimensional virtual world. This is supposed to be like the real world, and here those who engage can trade land, buildings, and other digital assets and explore the space using their personalized avatars.

Whether the metaverse truly exists as yet depends on the definition applied. There are some who consider the metaverse as actually existing now in the digital worlds of Roblox, Minecraft and Fortnite. Certainly, these worlds do not disappear when the user goes off-line, for digital interactions, events even, continue.

One day it may be possible for people to load their consciousnesses into the metaverse, existing as an avatar and existing in some form of immortality – a state of awareness until the Internet no longer exists.

The popularity of the metaverse appears to be particularly acute among younger consumers. It may be the case that the brands that cater to their customers’ preferences, and engage with the metaverse, are going to win out.

An example of the metaverse and marketing is placing products, brands and experiences at appropriate points in the virtual world as people undertake their immersive exploration.

Looking into this latest marketing dross-development for Digital Journal is Jen Jones, Chief Marketing Officer at commercetools. Jones considers if fashion brands should be experimenting with the metaverse, and if so, how they should build their strategy.

Weighing up the pros and cons, Jones says: “The metaverse is all about how you define it. As fashion brands seek to experiment in this space, they must first figure out what it means to their customers and how it fits into their overall brand strategy.”

She adds: “If the brand’s customers have no interest whatsoever in the metaverse, then it’s probably not a good idea to invest time and resources into activating here, but if it is something that the brand’s customers are interested in, then why not try it out?”

This is because, Jones finds: “The metaverse is very low risk now, and who knows how popular it will be in the future, so why not see if this is something your customers end up enjoying?”

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Written By

Dr. Tim Sandle is Digital Journal's Editor-at-Large for science news. Tim specializes in science, technology, environmental, and health journalism. He is additionally a practising microbiologist; and an author. He is also interested in history, politics and current affairs.

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