Written by Zac Segula, Digital Success Manager
Whether we are talking cryptocurrency, virtual reality (VR), non-fungible tokens (NFTS), or Web 3.0, they all center around a progressive switch from physical to digital. As many things like art, events, and currency shift to become more digital, it seems inevitable that the digital realm will continue to expand into more and more places where we spend our time. That’s exactly what the Metaverse intends to accomplish.
If you are unfamiliar with the term, The Metaverse is an immersive, computer and user-generated digital environment consisting of virtual avatars that represent actual people and combines aspects of augmented and virtual reality. If this still doesn’t make sense, watch the trailer for Steven Spielberg’s 2018 film Ready Player One. The Metaverse will combine video games, technology, and social media in one place.
Is The Metaverse a Fad or the Future?
Just as print advertising was king in the ’90s and slowly began to lose ground to the digital ads and social media marketing we see today, we are at the beginning of a similar transformation to marketing in The Metaverse. Facebook, which saw over 31 billion dollars in ad spend in 2020, announced in October 2021 that they were rebranding their company name to Meta. This shift in name reflects the company’s new focus on The Metaverse. If Facebook is shifting its billion-dollar advertising business to The Metaverse, it’s fair to say that many savvy real estate marketers will follow suit.
What Will Be Different?
Did you know that during a global pandemic, a musical concert drew an attendance of 12 million viewers? Maybe you didn’t, but your kids did. That is because the show was performed by musical artist Travis Scott in a digital arena in Fortnight, one of today’s most popular video games in which users create avatars and compete in a large-scale battle royale. Fortnight can be considered almost a beta version of what The Metaverse is becoming and how companies will use it creatively to connect millions of people in a digital world.
As the way we reach users changes, so will our metrics for real estate marketing success. Conversions will pivot to be more inclusive of virtual actions. Ads will become more immersive and likely call upon marketers to incorporate all five senses. Tracking a user’s phone behavior will no longer be as valuable as that user’s avatar movement. Moreover, if The Metaverse is built on a decentralized platform, advertisers’ restrictions could likely disappear.
Since real estate digital marketers will go where they can get the most traffic, as The Metaverse evolves, so will our marketing strategy.
What Marketing In the Metaverse Might Look Like
As we begin attending more digital events and living within a completely digital universe, we won’t be spending time on our phones so much as in our phones. As that evolution continues, so will the need to adapt our real estate digital marketing campaigns. Instead of going to YouTube on their computer, users might put on their virtual reality headsets and walk their avatar to a YouTube Movie theatre. The way we create real estate digital ads will be completely different because they will be consumed in a different medium. Facebook banners will be replaced by digital billboards at
a busy intersection across from a Van’s Virtual Skatepark. Pictures of floor plans and clickable Matterport videos of apartments will likely become obsolete. Instead, the Metaverse will allow prospects to virtually walk around that apartment before signing a PDF and emailing it in. The buyers’ journey will be completely different, thus so will a real estate marketer’s touchpoints.
So ultimately, the question isn’t, “will The Metaverse change digital marketing?” it’s “how will it change digital marketing and how can we keep up as real estate marketers?” It is hard to fully grasp the changes likely to come from The Metaverse. After all, we didn’t know having a GPS on our phones would lead to the emergence of Uber until it was already happening. But one thing is sure: those changes aren’t just coming; they are already beginning, right now. With that in mind, the important question becomes, “Are you ready to change your digital marketing for The Metaverse?”