The Metaverse is a concept gaining increasing attention in today’s digital-first world. Some estimate the value of the metaverse will soon reach the trillions, and experts believe the landscape will form the new frontier for digital transformation. It’s no wonder brands want to get involved.
However, the metaverse isn’t a single technology you can buy and implement into your company roadmap. It’s not something you can “own” in the same way as a VR headset or a set of AR smart glasses. This makes finding a vendor to help you navigate, leverage, and understand the metaverse marketplace particularly complex.
If you want to make sure you’re prepared to unlock the potential of the metaverse as you continue to innovate and transform your business, here’s what you need to do.
Research the Metaverse
Similar to any disruptive technology, the metaverse requires careful planning and research. There are still a number of companies in the world today who don’t fully understand what it means to get involved with the “metaverse”. An even larger number of companies believe investing in the metaverse simply means buying a VR headset.
The first thing you’ll need to know is the metaverse is not a single technology or business investment. As Mark Zuckerberg (Meta) defines it, the metaverse is an embodied internet – an immersive digital experience designed to strengthen the connection between the real and physical worlds.
Researching the metaverse will give you an insight into what you can realistically do to take your business closer to this environment.
For instance, you can leverage aspects of the metaverse like VR to build communities for students, and design more immersive educational experiences.
You can use decentralization and blockchain to improve the way users manage their digital identities in the financial world and unlock new methods of investment.
Know Your Metaverse Innovators
Once you have a better understanding of the metaverse, you can begin to explore how companies are getting involved with the landscape. Perhaps one of the most obvious companies to start looking at is “Meta”, previously Facebook – the brand that helped to start the conversation about what the metaverse might mean in recent years.
However, there are countless other companies making their own tracks in the metaverse today, from the Cambridge blockchain society, to Microsoft with it’s Mesh technology and HoloLens headsets.
If you’re not sure where to get started with your adventures into the metaverse, events and conferences can be an excellent way to get an insight into the vision various brands have of the metaverse.
Expos like the Global Metaverse conference, or the Web3 conference provide insights into where various brand are investing in a future of metaverse-related concepts like blockchain, artificial intelligence, and the internet of everything.
Focus on Solving Problems
Because the metaverse isn’t a single technology, companies need to take a more focused, and refined approach to making sure they’re investing in the right ecosystems. The best way to get started is to follow the same practices you would use when installing any new technology into your ecosystem.
Start by thinking about the most significant problems in your business you want to solve. For instance, you might want to improve customer experience and raise satisfaction scores among your consumers.
If your goal is to boost CX, you can begin to look into the concepts of the metaverse which will help you to solve specific service problems.
If your customers are worried about the security and transparency of your interactions, you could consider implementing blockchain and smart contracts.
If your clients want a more immersive way to learn about your technology, without having to interact with salespeople in-person, you can build a virtual environment where people can put digital twins of your tools to the test in an online space.
Look for a Vendor with Specific Expertise
Choosing specific problems, you want to address will help you to determine which kinds of metaverse vendors you need to work with.
For instance, are you looking for a company to help you leverage virtual reality for training and customer support purposes? If so, you can begin to look for a vendor which specializes in headsets or software built for the industry you’re working in.
Finding a vendor with a distinct understanding of your industry, as well as the technology you want to leverage, will help you to bypass some of the more significant problems associated with digital transformation.
For instance, many companies investing in metaverse technology going forward will need to think about how they’re going to maintain data security and privacy in a digitized world.
It’s also worth looking for a vendor who has a clear metaverse vision, and an understanding of how their technology integrates with the wider concept of the metaverse as a whole. Vendors with a big-picture view of the metaverse are more likely to develop technology with a focus on openness and flexibility – crucial concepts in the metaverse.
Experiment and Explore
Finally, when it comes to investing in an area as new and fresh as the metaverse, one of the best things you can do is put the technology to the test yourself.
The only way to get a true feel for how things like digital workplaces and blockchains will benefit your business, is to experiment with the tech, and make notes of what you discover.
For most companies, the transition into a metaverse-first future won’t be an overnight evolution, but a slow and steady journey.
It can start with something as simple as investing in a few VR headsets for your team members, so they can interact in a hybrid workplace more effectively and evolve all the way to the point of building connected ecosystems of people, processes, and things.
Through experimentation, you can collect constant data, feedback and insights to guide your future investments, and improve your vision.