What is the Metaverse? Echoes of this question could be heard all around the internet in late 2021. Although the term had been coined years ago, it was October of that year that brought an absolute explosion in its popularity. The reason? Mark Zuckerberg’s announcement during the annual Connect conference.
It was then that Facebook changed its name to Meta and started focusing on this new concept. So how is the idea doing today, and are there any metaverse business ideas worth considering? Before we jump into the main topic of this article, let’s start with reminding the definition of a metaverse.
The word “metaverse” can have two meanings. One typically refers to a multiplayer platform, game or application. These metaverses usually have a currency and some sort of economy. In addition, their elements and environments can be created and developed by users. Most of them use immersive technologies like virtual reality (VR).
In this article, we will call these metaverse platforms. Examples of metaverse platforms include Roblox, Decentraland, Sandbox, Bloktopia, Minecraft and, to a degree, even Fortnite.
The other meaning is an ecosystem or network these platforms create. Or rather are supposed to create in the future. They will theoretically intertwine and connect with each other naturally, similar to how websites are connected by the world wide web, making what we call the internet. Let’s look at some metaverse business ideas.
Creating a branded space is a great first step if you want your business to enter the metaverse. Although you don’t have to start this way, it serves as a good foundation for all future business activities. You can create it in an existing metaverse, or develop your own, dedicated virtual world with a metaverse development company like ourselves.
Why is a branded space one of the best metaverse business ideas? It’s an excellent base for:
- hosting virtual events
- connecting with clients
- meeting and collaborating with partners
- immersive shopping experiences
- employee onboarding and training
- branded gaming experiences
Besides, its existence alone can attract media attention and increase brand awareness. People who have never met the brand, but are active in the metaverse platform where it is present, can become interested in the company if it offers some kind of value. For example, a gaming experience.
Where can you create a branded space? You can take advantage of existing metaverse platforms like Roblox, Altspace and Decentraland or create your own platform. Because of practical reasons, most companies decide to use existing metaverses. Let’s see how some of them implemented this metaverse business idea.
Metaverse use cases
Hyundai created an interactive experience in Roblox for people to learn about their new cars. The experience was designed to promote Hyundai’s brand and products to a young audience. The business value was that it allowed people to test drive the cars before they bought them, and it also allowed Hyundai to show off their new cars to a wider audience.
The Atari-branded space in Decentraland is a prime example of a great metaverse business idea and successful branded space in the virtual world. Atari used its well-known name and logo to create an area that was both visually appealing and interactive, with games and other activities for users to enjoy. The result was a thriving branded virtual environment that helped to increase the visibility of the Atari brand and drive users to their products.
Let’s talk more about the first thing you can do in branded spaces – host virtual events. It’s basically the same as regular brand happenings, but you can have an unlimited number of guests and they don’t have to travel anywhere making the experience more eco-friendly. It’s also easier and cheaper than hosting a whole event in the real world. Virtual worlds do have some limitations of their own, but they’re free of many restrictions the physical world has. You can build floating buildings, for example!
So what role does a metaverse development company play in this scenario? Although virtual events require less effort, you still need to prepare a few things. When you host, let’s say, a virtual collection launch, you need to build the catwalk, decorate the venue and create 3D models of the clothes. For metaverses, this is something that a team of developers and artists does. Let’s look at another one of our metaverse business ideas.
One thing people love about metaverse platforms and games is that they can customize their digital avatars and spaces. Many brands capitalize on this by creating virtual counterparts of their physical products. For example, Nike created a Roblox experience called Nikeland. Users can try on virtual clothes and accessories, buy them and play games like dodgeball. Supposedly at least 7 million people have already visited Nikeland.
But companies aren’t limited only to wearables and collectibles. Usable assets and objects, like cars you can drive in-game, are also a great idea. For example, if a consumer drives a Ford vehicle in their favorite metaverse, they will probably make an emotional connection to the brand and be more likely to buy their car in real life. And you can make money on the in-game vehicle too.
The role of NFTs
Not all metaverses use NFTs. For example, Roblox doesn’t. But if your target platform does, it makes sense to utilize the technology. As a reminder, NFTs (Non-Fungible Tokens) are digital proof of ownership of a digital asset. They’re stored on the blockchain and can include smart contracts within them.
What does this mean from a business perspective? First of all, if a user buys something as an NFT, they theoretically can use it in different metaverses. This property will become more useful in the future when we have something closer to a metaverse network. Secondly, if you sell an NFT in a virtual shop, you can simultaneously sell the physical object thanks to the smart contract it can contain. This brings us to the next metaverse business idea.
Immersive shopping experience
So besides the opportunity to sell virtual goods, you can sell physical products in the metaverse. Why would you want to sell your articles in the metaverse? People are spending more and more time there. It’s usually better to have a store in a shopping mall because it attracts more people than remote locations. In the same way, a store in the metaverse has the potential to draw in millions of people daily.
You can also use metaverse spaces for virtual showcases. Even if your product is on the more expensive side, you can use metaverses for its presentations in VR. This includes all costly goods such as real estate, cars, yachts or industrial machinery.
Collaborating in VR
The last of our metaverse business ideas is to create a space for meeting and collaborating with people inside and outside of your organization. You can use a dedicated virtual space or one of the existing platforms, like Horizon Workrooms or Altspace.
Depending on the industry, a company’s designers, product managers, engineers or developers can collaborate in the metaverse. Virtual reality allows them to easily create mock-ups and prototypes of products without using any materials and physical space. Additionally, they can work together even if they are miles away from each other, making remote working more accessible.
On the other hand, a virtual office can be used to meet clients and business partners without anyone needing to travel long distances. And why not give them virtual tours of your production lines and facilities while you’re at it? All this makes it significantly easier to scale your business globally.
Become the face of the digital revolution
The metaverse is still in its early days but growing fast. And businesses are starting to take notice. So if you want to be ahead of the curve, now is the time to start thinking about how you can be a part of this exciting future.
We recommend creating a branded space in an existing metaverse. Alternatively, you can develop your own platform. Either way, you will probably need the help of a metaverse development company at some point. At 4Experience, we can build an immersive and interactive experience for you from scratch or assist you in creating one.
If you’d like to explore the opportunities and other metaverse business ideas, we would be happy to meet for a 60-minute free consultation. Let’s start building your metaverse together!
The author generated this text about metaverse business ideas in part with GPT-3, OpenAI’s large-scale language-generation model. Upon generating draft language, the author reviewed, edited, and revised the language to their own liking and takes ultimate responsibility for the content of this publication.
Marketing specialist with four years of experience. Having spent part of his childhood in Ireland, he's fascinated with its culture and language. Loves history, football and any form of writing.