The Metaverse and Performance Marketing: In Five Steps to ROI

More and more companies are deciding to take the step into the metaverse. But do you have to make a return? With these five steps you ensure that you enter the metaverse well prepared and that you also get results.

The metaverse is an inherently infinitely scalable virtual world. And with the potential to attract and entertain the entire global population, it’s also an environment that many brands want to get into quickly, and some are already active. However, many brands have no idea what they are going to do in the metaverse. given the experimental nature of the platform, this is not directly wrong. However, the question that arises here is whether there is also a place for performance marketing in the metaverse. Or is this so contrary to the fundamentals of this environment that there will never be a place for it?

The three elements of Customer FLOW that we use (Experience, Media, and Content as described here) are just as applicable in the metaverse as they are in the real world. Therefore, it also makes sense to consider a future ROI when planning activities in the metaverse. Brands looking to carve out a place in the metaverse would do well to move quickly but also carefully. If you want to use the metaverse for performance marketing, don’t think of the metaverse as an isolated environment, but rather include the entire customer journey. Sarah Barker, our Director of Global Commerce Solutions, has developed a roadmap for brands that want a place in the metaverse but also want to achieve a commercial return. We explain those steps here.

1. Evaluate and make plans

Before brands jump headfirst into the metaverse, we recommend taking stock of how they engage with their customers today. The goal is to identify the key values ​​and drivers of your audience, as well as the type of content they enjoy engaging with. For this, brands can obtain information from first party data such as your CRM, website, apps, and social media accounts. This data can be combined with external data from, for example, social listening tools† Insights from this can be used to create a value proposition that is authentic to the brand.

We recommend that brands test at this stage with content that matches the metaverse on platforms where the brand is already active. Think of the use of Augmented Reality (AR) content on platforms like Snapchat, Facebook, and TikTok. With your own AR developmenttools offered by these platforms, the tests can be configured in an accessible way. Aside from the fact that using AR can lead to better performance of these channels, it’s also a good way to find out what content works and what doesn’t work well in the virtual world. These lessons can later be carried over to the metaverse.

2. Educate and direct

The metaverse can seem like a daunting environment the moment you’re less familiar with it. While games like Fortnite and Roblox may attract millions of users around the world, web3 worlds like The Sandbox and Decentraland are still relatively unknown (web3 is a name for a decentralized internet rather than a centralized internet built on servers owned by a admin only). And despite the growing buzz Around the metaverse, many potential users will be left wondering at this point what NFTs are and where to buy them. (NFT, “non-fungible tokens” are non-exchangeable dataunits stored on a blockchain. Digital assets that can be sold and traded. Types of NFTs can be associated with digital files such as photos, videos, and audio).

For this reason, it’s important to educate your own users about the metaverse and help them understand where and how to find your brand in the metaverse. To do this, develop informative content that can educate your target audience, at varying levels of familiarity with the metaverse, via social media, apps, or in retail stores. It’s also crucial to keep SEO in mind and make sure you can be found for the most important search terms. And beyond digital, the offline world can also be considered to raise awareness of the metaverse environment.
Focus communication on platforms where conversations about the metaverse are already happening, like Discord, Twitch, or Twitter. the commitment of paid media is crucial to building awareness for your brand’s metaverse launch, where we recommend that ads be as interactive as possible and connect with metaverse content.

One possibility for this is the use of virtual influencers. These are computer generated ambassadors who have their own account on Instagram and TikTok, for example. Brands can partner with existing virtual influencers (such as Miquela or Yoox) or create their own influencers. Creating your own virtual influencer will require a larger investment, but will provide the opportunity to create ongoing and personalized content for both organic and non-organic content. paid media

3. Connect

Now is the time to enter the metaverse! For brands, the metaverse provides a space to engage with their audiences through immersive experiences. But when designing this content, it’s important to consider how your users will engage over and over again, rather than just once. trick experience. Just as a traditional website also needs to update its content and commercial offers, so does the virtual world.

Some brands choose to participate in existing virtual worlds and create their own country in it. For example, Nike and Vans developed their own countries in Roblox, with virtual stores where you could buy products like outfits and skateboards for avatars. Other brands choose to set up their own world. As he did, for example, before the launch of his new Balenciaga collection with the virtual game Afterworld: The Age of Tomorrow.

Data collection also allows brands to tailor their content to maintain cultural relevance and be present in the spaces where their communities are located. This not only evolves the performance of your metaverse, but can also improve your digital reach or in the store– optimize efforts. Another option is to focus on NFTs. These can exist within existing web3 worlds, such as clothing, skins or items for your avatars. A case in point is Burberry’s collaboration with Blankos Block Party to create their monogrammed Sharky B NFT.

If the metaverse grows, this could be an interesting avenue, allowing users to move their digital assets from one web3 world to another and represent a brand anywhere. And NFTs are often bought with crypto currency, which in turn generates a direct source of income and therefore ROI. However, there is not always a positive consumer response to brands moving into the world of NFTs and this could lead to a decline in NFT adoption.

4. Convert

The metaverse is a constantly evolving space. While there is no doubt that more features are to come that can increase sales, there are already things we can think about to make user experiences affordable.

First, the metaverse offers a plethora of opportunities to secure a place for a brand. Brands can showcase their products in high-traffic locations within existing worlds. Being a good option for this In the game– and esports advertising, powered by platforms like Anzu, Admix and Bidstack. Advances in this area allow brands to now use real-time data signals to serve ads to a very specific group of users in a way that doesn’t interfere with the game itself.

Brands should also give their buying mindset activate when developing a new virtual country or virtual stores. The presentation of a flagship store with products can use techniques known as: UX evaluations, performance analysis, user surveys and CRO to minimize any friction in the purchase process. For the sale of physical products, the right partners that fit the brand, such as e-commerce sites and marketplaces, should also be selected.

5. Preservation

Finally, it is very important that your customers’ metaverse experiences are not unique. Brands must think of a long-term strategy to retain customers, increase rise time value and get more value from your investment. At this stage, existing techniques are largely transferable to the metaverse. For example, brands can offer loyalty programs. This will incentivize users on their first digital asset purchase and add a sense of exclusivity. In this way, a ‘meta-CRM’ can be built with which brands can continue to communicate. Also consider providing benefits within the metaverse itself and making sure customers keep coming back to your digital world. For example, Decentraland is hosting its own digital fashion week this year with fashion shows and events.

Although the metaverse is still in its infancy, performance marketers have an important role to play and existing knowledge can be greatly applied in the virtual world. At the moment there are already commercial opportunities for brands in the metaverse and that will only increase with the growth of this environment. So it’s important for brands to act quickly to gain a place in the metaverse, but first it’s important to carefully consider the metaverse customer journey and include the five steps in this article.

About the author: Niels Noorlander is a social product specialist at Reprise.

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