Talk of the metaverse is riding an all-time high on the hype cycle. It’s no wonder. It’s an exciting time for the future of the internet and cyberspace—and brands are rushing to get a slice of the trillion-dollar addressable market. Hype aside, thought leaders, authors, gamers, blockchain and NFT traders, tech gurus, and innovative companies have been shaping the metaverse for years.
So what’s the metaverse and why all the buzz? How will it impact how companies engage with their employees and customers in the near future? More importantly, how can businesses tap into the metaverse to improve communications, sales, customer support, and internal processes to be more competitive? Let’s find out.
What’s The Metaverse?
Think of the metaverse as the evolution of the internet. It’s like a 3D, real-time cyberspace where an avatar represents you in this virtual reality (VR). Your metaverse avatar can hang out, play, socialize, work, buy and sell or trade stuff, travel the world, or do whatever—just like you can in real life. For example, you could go to a concert with your friends in the metaverse and you can have side conversations or dance with them while you’re experiencing the event.
It’s not too far-fetched, either. Anyone who’s played World of Warcraft or Fortnite or traded NFTs like swapping baseball cards and buying digital art, for instance, have already experienced early forms of the metaverse. A lot of us work remotely online and connect with people—whether it’s our family, friends, or colleagues—in apps, games, chats, email, or video hangouts. We spend a lot of time in the digital world. Many of us have attended Zoom work meetings or bought tickets to a show during the pandemic and ended up watching it from home.
Now imagine that you had an avatar to represent you in this metaverse and that your human experience, your connection with others in this cyberspace, and your physical senses were all more life-like. That’s where the metaverse has the power and potential to go. That’s why everyone’s so excited about it and looking for ways to jump in.
How Businesses Can Benefit From Using the Metaverse
At this stage of innovation ahead of the adoption curve, the sky is the limit for how companies in every industry can use the metaverse to engage and connect with customers, there are many benefits for businesses to using the metaverse, from sales and marketing, to increased employee engagement.
Sales And Marketing In The Metaverse
From a sales and marketing point of view, the metaverse can either digitally recreate your brand offerings in a virtual setting or enhance the in-person experience to be more meaningful and engaging. Both options sound like great ways to attract new customers who are curious about the metaverse and whatever your company has to offer.
Travel companies, for instance, could create an entirely digital experience of a place in order to attract more tourists to visit in person—or, just to explore the place virtually. You could explore New York City or Paris virtually and go to parks, shops, plays, art galleries, and so on (all of which are engaging you as a customer as well), but from the comfort of your home. Or, for those in-person experiences, having an immersive digital portion could connect everyone present and make their time interacting with your brand that much more memorable.
Customer Service In The Metaverse
From a customer service point of view, brands could have virtual tech support as if the customer brought the item right into your storefront. IKEA, for example, could offer customer service virtually where a support person’s metaverse avatar can see exactly where you’ve gone wrong and help you put a product together properly. For many tech support teams, customer service in the metaverse is just a hop, skip, and jump from remote computer access and live chats to avatars with similar capabilities. This could be the missing human connection that so many customers want from support teams in the near future.
Using The Metaverse To Engage With Employees
What about companies looking to engage and interact with their employees? For many companies, their employees will likely never meet in person. As social human beings, having human connections are essential to our livelihood and well-being. No, emailing doesn’t cut it. If brands establish a virtual workspace where remote employees’s metaverse avatars can hang out and work in a life-like setting, they can recreate the work culture, reconnect people, and keep them engaged.
The Metaverse-Equivalent Of Team Zoom Meetings
Say that your remote and global company hosts a metaverse-equivalent of a Zoom meeting. In this meeting, your employees attend the meeting as avatars and sit around a VR table in a VR meeting space. They have spatial audio and can have side conversations with other employees without everyone else hearing. They can gesture, make facial expressions, and eye contact as they would in an in-person meeting.
Team members can also present and share documents virtually. With GoLinks, an employee in this virtual meeting space could verbally say, “Everyone go to Go/Reports”, or physically share the document in the metaverse meeting so that everyone can see it. What a great way to easily connect and engage teams and share documents virtually, regardless of where (and when) they’re working!
Training New Hires Using The Metaverse And Knowledge Sharing
If your company has teams working in person, the metaverse can help enhance the work experience in many ways. For instance, a new hire could jump into your company’s metaverse, as if they’re in a game, and collect points for gathering and reading onboarding and training materials. This new employee could meet with various colleagues who help train them, answer questions, and share important documents easily with GoLinks. That would instill an innovative, creative, and fun sense of company culture right from the get-go.
Your company’s metaverse could become your knowledge base online, where important shared documents are stored and easily accessed by anyone. Just like a quest game, you could have icons with shortened GoLinks to visually show important documents that new hires need along their onboarding journey, such as Go/Training, Go/Culture, Go/Forms, Go/CompanyEmails, and Go/GetStarted! Talk about an engaging vehicle for knowledge sharing!
Company Disruption And Engagement In The Metaverse
In an interview for Lex Fridman’s Podcast, Mark Zuckerberg explained that “a lot of people think that the metaverse is about a place, but one definition of this is it’s about a time when basically immersive digital worlds become the primary way that we live our lives and spent our time.”
Your employees and team members already spend a lot of time in a digital space, whether it’s sharing documents, writing emails, texting, meeting on Zoom, playing games, shopping online, surfing the internet, sharing and scrolling through social, FaceTiming family and friends, or streaming films. It’s up to companies to adapt and adopt systems and knowledge bases that will continue to support them as our digital worlds become more immersive and virtual.
Learn more about how GoLinks works.