The metaverse continues to revolutionize the way we lead our digital lives, and has also affected the way companies market their products. The uptake of metaverse in 2021, along with the increasing developments in AR and VR technology, provided more opportunities for brands to reach their audience–may they be physical or virtual. Several companies have already made their way into the virtual world, from luxury brands like Prada, to fast food chains like McDonald’s. In this article, we will explore the top metaverse marketing strategies that led to these brands’ successes.
Experts say that the metaverse’s market size expansion will not end in 2022. This increase will continue until the year 2030 or further, and will reach $947.118 billion US dollars. This promising future made brands immediately reserve their spots and make their own marks in this virtual universe.
Brands are implementing varying strategies to cater to metaverse consumers, from creating their own metaverse games, incorporating NFTs, to collaborating with metaverse influencers. This is just the start–more and more marketing strategies will arise as the metaverse changes.
Don’t let your brand get stuck in the past and start ensuring your place into the future. Consumer taste evolves along with technology, and you have to keep up. Here are the top metaverse marketing strategies we curated for you, all based on actual case studies. Let’s take a look!
Top 7 Metaverse Marketing Strategies ⬇️
1. Brand-Sponsored Game Modes
AMD x Fortnite
Industry: Computer hardware, e-sports
Computer hardware brand AMD has made its phenomenal mark into the metaverse. AMD teamed up with MAKAMAKES to create four new maps in the Fortnite Creative Island. This team-up made Fortnite players experience AMD brand from a whole new perspective, with the islands looking exactly like an AMD RX 6000 graphics card, and an AMD Ryzen 5000 processor.
On these islands, Fortnite players were able to play different game modes–free for all battles, box fights, and capture the flag. AMD also teamed up with MAINGEAR to give Fortnite gamers a chance to win a MAINGEAR Turbo gaming PC, powered by an AMD Ryzen 7 processor and Radeon RX 5700 XT graphics card. Talk about taking marketing to the next level!
Reason for AMD’s Success:
AMD’s marketing campaign saw success because of two main reasons. First, AMD chose the perfect metaverse to launch its campaign in. AMD is known for its high-performance computer hardware, and collaborating with Fortnite which requires high computer specifications made them a perfect match. Second, AMD was able to incorporate its brand into the game effectively. AMD hardware on the creative map, along with Fortnite’s element of gameplay, made everything seamless and integrated.
2. Augmented Reality Store
Nike x Hovercraft
Industry: Fashion, footwear
The metaverse doesn’t just mean putting on a VR headset and interacting using avatars. The metaverse is comprehensive enough to even include the use of Augmented Reality (AR). Nike made use of AR to provide its customers with an outdoor experience, while staying within the four walls of its House of Innovation store in New York.
Nike partnered with Hovercraft to create a digitally-enabled discovery center for the launch of its All Conditions Gear (ACG) HO20 collection of products. A QR code was placed in each station, and customers could use their mobile phones to scan the same. The code unlocks an interactive basecamp map, animated models of local wildlife, and the digital AR model of the Nike, the ACG Hiker mascot.
Reason for Nike’s Success:
Nike leveraged COVID-19 pandemic to its consumers the capabilities of the metaverse. The pandemic brought consecutive lockdowns, making it hard for people to explore the outdoors. Nike made use of this fact and gave its customers an unforgettable wildlife journey through the help of AR. This campaign shows priority for customer experience, as well as brand innovation.
3. Virtual Events and Concerts
Ariana Grande x Fortnite
Industry: Music, entertainment
Nike’s not the only brand which saw metaverse as the perfect marketing venue during the pandemic. The restriction on public gatherings meant cancellations of concerts and other events. Ariana Grande, however, saw an opportunity in the metaverse to hold live events without sacrificing public health and safety.
Ariana Grande collaborated with Fortnite to provide players a musical journey unlike any other. During Fortnite’s Rift Tour, it featured an in-game live music event where Ariana Grande performed her most popular hits such as Raindrops, 7 Rings, Be Alright, R.E.M., The Way, and Positions. Ariana’s avatar danced around in pops of color, with full-on choreography and costume changes.
Reason for Ariana’s Success:
Hosting virtual events and concerts is a great way to engage a brand’s audience. Ariana Grande was able to attract not only seasoned metaverse users, but also her loyal, newcomer fans who are curious about the metaverse. In both worlds, Ariana brought something new to the table–she gave a worthwhile musical experience to Fortnite players, and she introduced newcomers to the virtual world inside the game.
4. Virtual Wearables
Gucci x Zepeto
Industry: Luxury, fashion
Your avatar’s self-expression won’t be complete if you can’t modify your clothing to match your personality. If you’re luxurious and stunning in real life, wouldn’t you want your avatar to look the same? Gucci gave that opportunity to Zepeto players.
Gucci partnered with Zepeto, a metaverse game and social media platform which makes use of personalized avatars. The collaboration will allow users to dress their Zepeto 3-D avatars in pieces from Gucci’s latest collections. Zepeto customers are also free to explore the Gucci Villa space.
This strategy is common in fashion brands. Balenciaga also collaborated with Fortnite, where the former released Balenciaga Fit Sets and introduced fresh looks for four of Fortnite’s fan-favorite characters. Don’t get us wrong, though. Even non-fashion brands can ride with the wave of virtual wearables!
Coca-Cola was able to hop onto this marketing trend when it released its branded NFTs. The NFTs unlocked wearable jackets which avatars can rock on Decentraland metaverse.
Reason for Gucci’s Success
Online identities are as crucial in the metaverse as our actual identities in real life. Avatars in the metaverse represent the players’ taste, identity, and personality. Brands like Gucci, Balenciaga, and Coca-Cola are giving these players the opportunity to express themselves the way they would off-screen. These brands might even be giving these players a chance to wear virtually what they can’t in actuality. Launching virtual wearables is one of the most-effective, interactive ways to engage the metaverse market.
5. Metaverse Location
Millennium Hotels x Decentraland
Industry: Accommodation, hospitality
Imagine your avatar feeling tired from walking around all day, completing challenges and competing in games. Just like the person behind the screen, your avatar would need a place for rest and recreation. This is what Millenium Hotels offered to Decentraland players.
MullenLowe Singapore has partnered with Millennium Hotels and Resorts to launch M Social Decentraland, making it the world’s first hospitality group to operate a hotel in the metaverse virtual world. Guests who step inside M Social Decentraland can interact with an avatar that welcomes everyone in the lobby. The avatar guides guests through the hotel. Those who reach the top of Decentraland, and share a screenshot of their Avatar with hashtag #MSocialDecentraland on their social channels, have a chance to win real-world hotel rewards.
Reason for Millenium Hotels’ Success:
Launching M Social Decentraland showcased the hotel group’s brand essence which is being a trendsetter, and being a brand that creates unique social connections with their guests. Aside from being the first of its kind, Millennium Hotels’ marketing strategy was also able to integrate the real and virtual world–it gave virtual guests a chance to experience real-life hotel experiences and perks.
6. Virtual Influencers
Samsung x Shudu & Miquela
Industry: Consumer electronics
The tech industry is at the forefront of metaverse development. Naturally, tech brands would turn to virtual influencers to achieve true representation of what advanced tech looks like. Samsung is one of the first brands to leverage on this strategy.
For its social media marketing campaigns, Samsung partnered with virtual influencers Shudu and Miquela to promote the new Samsung Galaxy Z Flip and the Samsung Galaxy Series. The Galaxy Z Flip is one of the first touch screen flip phones available today, which made Samsung’s collaboration even more sensible, with Shudu being the world’s first digital supermodel.
Reason for Samsung’s Success:
Samsung was able to tap onto the full potential of the metaverse and influencer marketing when it chose virtual influencers as brand ambassadors. Social media platforms are flooded with thousands of influencers, and a brand can only make an impact if it chooses the right one. Samsung, by choosing Miquela and Shudu, showed innovation and authenticity in the digital world.
7. Virtual Billboards
Boohoo x Paris World in Roblox
Industry: Fashion, clothing
Some marketing strategies work in both the digital and the real world. One of the major marketing strategies in actual life is putting up billboards where people can see them. In the metaverse, this strategy also exists, especially taking place in live events and places where avatars commonly pass by.
Fashion brand Boohoo made use of this technique. During Paris Hilton’s virtual fashion week on Roblox, Boohoo displayed its brand name on two prominent billboards located at the entrance area of the event. Boohoo’s billboards were seen by all attendees of the fashion week. Paris Hilton believes that billboards are part of our everyday lives, and it should be no different in the metaverse.
Reason for Boohoo’s Success:
Boohoo brought a familiar element to the unfamiliar. The metaverse is a relatively new world which not a lot of people have already fully grasped. Boohoo, by putting up billboards during the event, offered a sense of comfort and normality to the players, and also made the metaverse closer to real life.
The metaverse opened up new marketing strategies for brands to try and hop on. Brands which are launching marketing campaigns in this virtual world are looking at a bright future–they are able to secure their spots into the new generation of tech and consumerism.
We hope this article has helped your brand discover and understand the best ways to do marketing in the metaverse. We hope the cases we’ve provided serve as inspiration for your next campaign.
To know more about marketing in the metaverse, visit the AJ Marketing Blog.
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