Metaverse has become the hottest buzzword in the post-pandemic world and the industry is growing at a great pace. In a report by Citi, one of the world’s largest financial institutions, the metaverse market has been forecasted to reach the $13 trillion mark by 2030.
The level of enthusiasm around this virtual world is insurmountable. Brands across sectors and consumers across the spectrum are increasingly interested in it. They are talking about it, exploring ways to enter it, and utterly desire to make the most out of it.
The attention is justifiable, after all, the metaverse has been pegged to be a trillion-dollars a year opportunity by Greyscale Metaverse Report, 2021
These opportunities are attracting investors from different backgrounds not to mention the tech giants like Meta, Microsoft, and Apple, most notably Facebook which rebranded itself as a metaverse company named ‘Meta’ in October 2021.
In fact, not a single day goes by without a big shot announcing their entry into the Metaverse be it any conglomerate or a pop star.
This blog discusses different aspects of the metaverse and talks about the opportunities it offers for businesses.
Metaverse – The Universe of Opportunities
The word metaverse is a combination of two words – ‘meta’ and ‘universe’. Meta stands for ‘beyond’, hence, the term metaverse means ‘beyond the universe’.
A metaverse is a three-dimensional virtual realm that can act as a parallel world. Users can enter this world and live an alternate life through their avatars.
Metaverse is an evolved form of the internet that offers an immersive experience and commands certain features that make it distinct.
Features of Metaverse
Unlike the earlier social networking platforms, the metaverse platforms are owned by users i.e. they work as Decentralized Autonomous Organization(DAO). Any change in the game is decided by the users collectively instead of a few tech giants commanding the fate of millions or even billions of users. The most common example of DAO is Decentraland.
Independent Virtual Economy
Metaverses also run their own economy by offering compatibility to virtual and real-world currencies. For example, The Sandbox operates over the currency known as the SAND. By using this currency, users can carry out the economic transactions on the metaverse such as dealing in NFTs, participating in games, watching movies, and much more.
Metaverse will comprise many small interoperable platforms. Users can move from one platform to another along with their digital assets and use them on different platforms.
For example, a single wallet can be used to store currency and carry out transactions across different platforms.
Collective 3D spaces
A metaverse does not operate in silos as we see in video games. Instead, it is a collective 3D space where users can participate along with other users and have a shared experience.
One of the famous instances is the concert of rapper Travis Scott. It was organized in the metaverse of Fortnite and attended by 45 million fans.
The metaverse is a persistent experience that is it does not cease to exist once the user comes out of it or switches their devices off. It keeps on going like our actual world. It is more like a universe parallel to our real universe and you can hop from one to another at any time.
What can you do in Metaverse?
Metaverse facilitates activities that can be classified majorly into the following five categories –
This does not mean there cannot be other activities but, as of now, these are the dominant ones. What do these categories hold in themselves, let’s find out?
Socialization forms a significant part of the metaverse. Till now, the online interaction was only limited to chats, audio messages, and audio and video calls. Metaverse takes it a step further.
Metaverse stands out for its capability to offer collective experience. People can indulge in activities along with their friends and family in the same virtual world. This enhances the experience manifold.
Many companies are seeing metaverse as their next office location. In fact, many have already shifted to it. Like, Queppelin started conducting its Sales & Marketing meeting on its Metaverse platform even before the pandemic outbreak.
Similarly, Meta’s Horizon Workrooms facilitate employees to gather in a virtual office through VR or the web and engage in productive activities. Moreover, they are offered virtual replicas of office tools such as whiteboards, chats, calendar apps, etc to manage their work efficiently.
It would not be wrong to say that gaming forms the basis of the metaverse, at least for now. It is the most important aspect that pulls the crowd to the virtual world.
In the metaverse platforms, gaming is more flexible with users creating their own content, inviting friends from the real world, interacting with other players, and more importantly, they can “Play to earn”.
Players can engage in profitable activities by just playing their game. This includes getting rewarded in cryptocurrencies, NFTs, etc, which is a big reason to join and play in the metaverse.
Similarly, the metaverse offers enormous potential for leisure activities. People can watch movies, visit parks, and museums, and explore different metaverses created by others.
In fact, this possesses a great opportunity for businesses. They can develop a metaverse that attracts users, increase their footfall, and heighten their popularity.
Citi, in its report ‘Metaverse and Money, Decrypting the Future’, has projected the metaverse economy to be around $13 dollar by 2030.
For its research, Citi looked at everything from in-game tokens, to crypto, stable coins, CBDCs, and fiat currency.
Metaverse will see users getting involved in various forms of transactional activities that will lead to such a huge economy or say ‘Metanomy’.
Business opportunities in Metaverse
We are at an inflection point where the developments in the metaverse have accelerated. A significant number of individuals will spend a considerable amount of time in the virtual world.
According to Gartner, 25% of people will spend at least one hour a day in the metaverse by 2026. They will be there for work, shopping, education, socialization, entertainment, and much more.
Therefore, doing business in the metaverse is highly advisable to grab this trillion-dollar opportunity.
Up-next are some of the great business opportunities available on the metaverse to get a competitive edge with high ROIs.
The first and foremost on the list of business opportunities are Virtual Events. Metaverse facilitates events of all forms and shapes including concerts, product launches, press conferences, business meetings, town halls, etc.
It brings various advantages such as global reach, high social networking prospects, lead generation, brand recognition among others. All these will be reflected in your improved incomes figures.
Moreover, add the element of NFTs in these metaverse events and see the returns soar high.
Next to the virtual event comes virtual advertising. Metaverse offers new and impactful ways of advertising.
Such campaigns have a high impact and stay with the viewer for a longer period.
For instance, imagine a grand metaverse event is underway and an A-listed pop star is giving a mesmerizing performance. The stage is set in the middle of our the solar system. Stars are glittering and beautiful planets are moving around. The people are captivated by the performance and the imersive experience of the metaverse.
Suddenly your brand’s name emerges in the background with grand fireworks and breathtaking effects, the visuals will get etched into the mind of the audience and in a fraction of a second, your brand will be a household name. Sales will break the roof and the profit levels will chase infinity.
After a successful advertising campaign, the onus lies in the selling tactics. Here too, metaverse can offer novel ways to enhance the shopping experience of the consumer and ensure high selling figures.
In the metaverse, people can visit your virtual shop, try on the latest collection and buy it for their real selves.
Moreover, they can share the items with their close ones and ask for their views. They can also talk to your representative to clear doubts as well can interact with the influencer. These features will make an unforgettable shopping experience that users would like to undergo over and over again.
In the metaverse, manufacturing will take a smart new form with the help of digital twin technology. It involves the creation of a 3D model of a real product in the virtual environment.
This model is continuously updated and simulated to match the configuration of its real-life twin. At the end, the manufacturer can check if it suits the purposes or it need some more changes. This result in saving a lot of cost in research and development.
For example, Boeing, an American multinational plane manufacturer, is exploring digital twin technology to improve quality and safety. They will build 3D models of their planes in the metaverse to check their operational viability through constant updates and simulation. These constant updates will be reflected in the real-world twin.
The healthcare sector can utilize metaverse for its novel methodologies of diagnosing and treating diseases. Plus, it can contribute to the learning and training for healthcare providers.
For example, the Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality components of the metaverse can be utilized to train surgeons. This will require the development of the right software to simulate real-life situations. This will help the budding surgeons in carrying out successful surgeries.
One of the most fascinating applications of the metaverse can be in pain management tactics. Studies are underway to check how living in a digital world can distract patients and block pain signals to reach brains. This will be a great option for treating patients with severe pain.
Interactive education and learning
Metaverse has a lot of potential for the learning and education sector. The immersiveness offered by the virtual environment makes learning much more enjoyable and productive.
Educators can utilize the platform for a comprehensive learning experience that covers all the developmental aspects such as cognitive ability, social and emotional learning, creativity, and others.
They can conduct a host of educational activities on the metaverse. Students can participate in these activities to follow the “learning by doing” approach.
Recruitment & Training
Metaverse will be a great platform for building social networks and reaching out to new people. That is why recruiters can use this platform to connect with and recruit budding talents. They can organize hiring drives and job fairs on the metaverse where the Human Resources executives can talk to the candidates and conducts a various round of the selection process.
Similarly, training the new joiners on metaverse would be much more efficient due to the first-hand experience offered by the platform. The training can be conducted in the virtual environment of the metaverse that mirrors the real environment.
This will save a lot of time, cost, and other resources and render well-trained and job-ready employees in the end.
New world, new game
Metaverse is all about offering an experience to the user and nothing can beat a gaming experience. That is why gaming can be the biggest sector in the metaverse.
As per the Global Games Market Report 2021 – The VR and Metaverse Edition by Newzoo, there were approximately 3 billion gamers around the world and more than 90% of them are mobile gamers.
The report also predicts that the gaming industry will hit $218.7 billion by 2024 with a sustained growth of 8.7% per year.
Although the other forms of entertainment will catch up but gaming will surely lead the initial years of the metaverse revolution.
New age decentralized social media platforms
The reign of the tech giant controlling the data of its users is over. Now is the time for decentralized systems wherein users can have full control over their data. It is they who will decide what they want to do with their data and be paid to share it.
Although it is quite early to say what the new form of social platforms would be like. But it will be there in the coming times for sure and this will be one of the biggest businesses in the times of metaverse.
Dealing in NFTs
Around $41 billion worth of cryptocurrencies was spent on the NFT marketplaces in 2021. And as per a report, the market size of the NFTs is expected to grow by USD 147.24 billion from 2021 to 2026 at a CAGR of 35.27%.
The NFT market is huge and most importantly it is open to everyone. You can too invest in creating and selling NFTs and make a fortune in this booming market.
Just like decentralized online platforms, there will be a need for decentralized hosting as well. No one wants their website to be easily taken down or degraded by a service outage of a given vendor and to suffer enormous loss.
Utilizing blockchain technology to offer decentralized web hosting solutions will find a lot of takers in the future.
Metaverse has arrived and has a lot to offer. But it is only for those who want to make it big and are ready to do anything for it. With the right strategy, you expand your business into this new world and get the returns that you never imagined.
Our real-world is for the first movers and when it comes to the virtual world of the metaverse, the first movers will take it all.