“In the metaverse, gamers participate in the digital reinvention of brands”

Le Journal du Net is a partner of the Mastercard Innovation Forum 2022, scheduled for December 8 in Paris. Co-founder of the Web3 metaverse platform The Sandbox and guest of MIF 2022, Sébastien Borget reveals to JDN the keys to the relationship between metaverse brands and players.

JDN. You will speak on December 8 during a round table entitled “Metaverse, fashion or real opportunity for brands?”. I think I know your opinion as co-founder of The Sandbox. Explain to us why the metaverse is not just a fad?

Sébastien Borget, co-founder and CEO of The Sandbox. © Cyril Bruneau – Sandbox

Sebastien Borget. of metaverse it is a technological and social revolution that is here to stay, that is not tied to economic cycles and that shows that users and brands are looking for new ways to have a more engaged relationship that is different from what we have used Web2: on Web2, people watch an Instagram or Tik Tok video for two to five seconds before moving on to the next video. The engagement rate is very low. What is the real value of a like, share or retweet for a brand? Metaverse brings a more personalized customer relationship.

How does metaverse drive user engagement?

asset Sandbox, people spend an average of twenty to thirty minutes within an experience engaging with completing searches, activations. Furthermore, a platform like Sandbox is open: users participate in the digital reinvention of the brand in this space, they have access to official brand tools and thanks to without code, they can place them on their land, which expands the brand’s presence and positions it as more creative and open. By leveraging the possibilities of technology and opening up to the community, the brand is reinventing itself in the metaverse. This is especially the case with the operations of Adidas, Gucci, Nike with RTFKT, Warner Music with Snoop Dogg or Steve Aoki, Smurfs, Rabbids.

Do users stay in the metaverse?

In Season 1, 60% of people who started finished the entire Alpha season (public playtesting phase, editor’s note). In season 3, we’re at 40% retention with people coming back almost every day, so we’re creating the behavior to educate people to re-enter the metaverse. We want these spaces to be alive and it is possible to constantly encounter players. According to our latest Season 3 Alpha metrics, we’re at 39,000 daily players and 201,000 monthly players. We count a total of more than 1.6 million hours played and more than 4.1 million messages exchanged between players. Players feel emotions through their avatar: there are moments of fun together, social intimacy and that’s it, without the need for VR or high-resolution graphics.

Is the code without one of the keys to attract the user?

Initially, the metaverse is empty, it is a set of spaces that need to be constructed, and to make creation accessible to everyone, it is not generating a metaverse under Unreal. (graphics engine, editor’s note), already too complicated for developers Video game and that requires specific training, that this will be achieved. We want a fun metaverse, not elitist. I think no code allows it. The champions of fun creation are Lego. It doesn’t get any easier than building with Lego. There is digital Lego: Voxel. It is an art form. It can take the form of blocks like in Minecraft or other more advanced ones and thus provide clarity to artists, that’s very good and that’s what we develop with Sandbox.

last July, you told us that “people don’t come to shop in the metaverse”. How should a brand be positioned in these universes?

A big brand recently communicated its first results in its sales on Roblox, it is very measured, especially compared to the turnover it achieves on any other traditional platform. The reason is very simple: before we try to encourage the user to make purchases in the metaverse, let’s already teach him to come there, and the purchase behaviors will come naturally. The commercial metaverse has yet to be defined, nor the business model that will prevail. There must be an audience. Sandbox has an important role because we are one of the only creative platforms UGC (user generated content, editor’s note) in a virtual and interactive 3D world, UGC and creativity are good directions for brands looking to reinvent themselves. Entering the metaverse for a brand shouldn’t just be a strategy based on KPIs and revenue. This will be refined later as patterns are found.

Sebastien Borget is the co-founder and COO of the decentralized metaverse The Sandbox, a virtual world where players can create, play, own, govern and monetize their experiences using NFTs & SAND, the platform’s main token. He also became the president of blockchain Game Alliance in 2020, a non-profit organization with 300 key industry members. Before co-founding mobile game publisher Pixowl, he worked at Ipercast and Wixi.com. He graduated from Telecom SudParis.

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