Metaverse: What brands have done in the last month
The metaverse is expected to be worth $5 trillion by 2030, per the McKinsey report - with its expansion to support growth in e-commerce ($2.6 trillion), advertising ($206 billion) and gaming ($125 billion).
"It's not going to be about better headsets, more realistic visual renderings, faster network speeds, more intelligent engines, but the adoption of the experiences that it enables and the propositions that it brings to life,"
said Ginny Ziegler, Accenture's Chief Marketing Officer in North America. Here's what brands are up to over the past month in the metaverse:
Gucci opens persistent digital space on Roblox
With Gucci Town, the luxury brand is looking to carve out a permanent space in Roblox that will evolve over time, demonstrating its commitment to the concept of a metaverse. By creating visual galleries, cafes and other spaces, Gucci is experimenting with the different forms that retail experiences could take on in the metaverse, a convergence of real-world and digital experiences.
Apart from its gathering spaces, Gucci Town includes a virtual store that could prove to be the most important element as the brand looks to drive revenue and engagement in the digital world. Inspired by the brand's online concept store Vault, the shop will showcase product drops and collaborations. Users will be able to purchase and collect digital Gucci items or outfit their Roblox avatars in Gucci clothes. The latter ability taps Roblox's new Layered Clothing technology that allows for more realistic 3D garments that fit any avatar body type, nodding to the inclusion that the metaverse could make possible.
The brand will let consumers collect an in-experience currency that can be used for power-ups or digital items, a gamification tactic that could deepen engagement with Gucci Town. By teaming with Roblox creators such as Rook Vanguard, Bunnexh and Lirn, the brand is embracing creators and possibly tapping into their fan bases, as brands have done with creators on other digital platforms. Gucci Town follows the brand's previous Roblox experiment, the Gucci Garden. Along with its forays into Roblox and the metaverse, Gucci has also made moves in the related world of gaming. The luxury brand has recently partnered with esports organization Faceit to foster the next generation of gaming talent.
NYX hosts metaverse Pride parade to celebrate all shades of LGBTQ community
NYX is flying its Pride flag in the metaverse. The cosmetics marketer is the first in its category to integrate with The Sandbox, but follows other companies in leveraging Web3 tools as a means to encourage self-expression.
Here, the brand links its products to the array of stripes in the LGBTQ community, with the goal of highlighting how makeup has no gender. The campaign includes a drop of 8,430 non fungible token (NFT) avatars that incorporate over 36 skin shades and aim to encompass every ethnicity, sexual orientation and gender identity. NYX will donate 100% of the NFT proceeds to the Los Angeles LGBT Center up to a $50,000 total.
Timberland brings boot innovation to the metaverse with Fortnite island
Timberland has run its Construct: 10061 program since 2018, but is looking to meet the cultural moment this year by porting the platform over into the metaverse. Like many metaverse plays, the Fortnite experience is essentially a more involved online gaming activation, though Timberland is making use of a range of developer Epic Games technology offerings.
The custom island gives players a peek behind the curtain at the bookmakers design process through a virtual version of its real-world lab. The larger space has varied climates that mirror the different outdoor environments people might explore wearing Timberland gear. Each of the three biomes on the island is accompanied by a Metaboot, with arctic, desert and forest-themed footwear that match the exaggerated cartoon aesthetic of Fortnite. The biomes can be explored through "parkour trails" that unlock special effects for visitors to bring back to the design lab. A fourth Metaboot is inspired by the classic Timberland yellow boot.
The Metaboots are the result of a collaborative effort between Timberland's Advanced Concepts & Energy team, Construct: 10061, Conceptkicks and BeyondCreative, a game studio that has previously worked with Chipotle, Adidas and Balenciaga, speaking to the range of businesses pursuing more bespoke activations in the massively popular multiplayer title. The latest Construct: 10061 also shows Timberland adopting a hybrid marketing model with the in-person launch event for Milan Design Week.