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FUTURE OF MARKETING

A gaming expert explains why the metaverse is going mainstream

By our News Team | 2021

The digital revolution, gaming and the pandemic have all come together to give the metaverse an almighty push.

What exactly is the metaverse? Following Facebook’s corporate name change and the comments of its boss, Mark Zuckerberg, marketers and ad industry executives have been scrambling to make sense of it all.

According to an international gaming expert, the metaverse really isn’t that new at all and has been part of the online gaming scene for years. Now, as gaming becomes ever more mainstream and gamers form an increasingly dominant group in the global economy – some estimates put the figure at two billion gamers worldwide – the metaverse is moving into the mainstream too.

Alexander Fernandez, CEO of technology company Streamline Media Group, says the digital revolution, gaming and the pandemic have all come together to give the metaverse an almighty push.

Future of marketing

HyacintheLuynes via Wikipedia

World was scrambling for solutions

In a column for Forbes business magazine, he writes that as the world scrambled for solutions to keep the economy running, many brands tapped into a system designed for productivity, collaboration and communication: the video games industry. 

“They explored ways to bridge the gap between physical and digital spaces and create new marketing experiences or transformative business models. These digitally creative initiatives gave others a glimpse into the metaverse,” Fernandez explains.

“The metaverse allows hyper brand and customer alignment. It’s a place where physical and digital reality meet. It’s the intersection of a Venn diagram (an illustration that uses circles to show the relationships among things) among media, entertainment, business and technology. The video games industry has laid the groundwork for the metaverse well ahead of its arrival into the mainstream.”

Fernandez believes there have been four drivers behind the dawn of the metaverse:

  1. The retirement of baby boomers and the rise of the digital-first Gen-X, Millennials, Xenial and Gen-Zers who grew up playing video games, surfing the web and travelling the world. 
  2. The digitisation of financial assets integrating across all aspects of life (for example, blockchain, smart contracts, cryptocurrencies and NFTs). 
  3. The future of workas the pandemic revealed that most knowledge businesses could function remotely as long as they had transparent cultures, processes and technologies to support them.
  4. The rise of the next two billion people as emerging markets in Latin America, Southeast Asia and Africa have become sources of raw talent eager to participate in the global economy. 

“Whether you’re looking at new ways to maintain brand loyalty, engage new customers or streamline your workflow, video game technology and methodology can be the key to unlocking them,” Fernandez writes.

“It’s not only creative industries that benefit but also traditional industries like healthcare, transportation and education. Remember when gamification was a big deal? That was just the beginning. The third epoch of gaming has arrived, and it’s bringing the metaverse with it.”

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