Virtual worlds

Virtual worlds offer consumers a place to belong

Consumers feel more included, accepted in the metaverse, according to the report.

Posted: July 28, 2022

(Image credit: Pixabay)

Consumers see virtual worlds as places of inclusion and belonging from their real lives. A recent McKinsey Report found that ad spending in the metaverse would reach between $144 billion and $206 billion by 2030. But tThe human element of the metaverse has so far been relatively unexplored. Research from Momentum Worldwide, in partnership with the American Association of Advertising Agencies, attempts to change that and examines how consumers feel when expressing themselves in virtual worlds.

The free white paper reveals that 80% of consumers feel more included in the Metaverse than in real life, and 79% say their friends in the Metaverse accept them for themselves rather than their looks.

“This work will become essential data for every brand and creative enterprise wishing to design, build and meaningfully participate in the metaverse,” explained Chick Foxgrover, executive vice president, creative technology and innovation at 4A’s.

The “accidental” and the “intentional”

The study of more than 4,500 consumers in seven countries, including the United States, identified two distinct metaverse user groups:

  • Accidentals – people who inadvertently use the metaverse through gaming platforms such as Roblox, Minecraft, and Fortnite.
  • Intentionals – people who are specifically looking for metaverse experiences.

To connect with these two groups, the article advises marketers to focus on three pillars of the metaverse: inspiration, self-expression, and connection.

Inspiration

According to the report, both the accidental and the intentional felt much happier after visiting the metaverse, with the former using virtual locations to draw inspiration from others and find creative expression. Intentionals use the metaverse for their personal development, to learn skills and earn money.

self-expression

One in five metaverse users describe themselves as introverted, and 78% of accidentals and 84% of intentionals feel more able to be themselves within its platforms.

Link

Some 79% of intentionals say they find it easier to make friends in the metaverse than in real life, while 51% of accidentals socialize in the metaverse with real-life friends and family.

What does this mean for marketers?

“Understanding what consumers expect from the metaverse, their behaviors and their motivations for finding happiness, finding escape and seeking inclusion are key to guiding the behavior of brands and businesses,” said Jason Alan Snyder, global director of technology, Momentum Worldwide.

The study shows that consumers who already use the metaverse feel more free to express themselves and feel more accepted than in real life. Both accidental and intentional users find moments of connection and inspiration in virtual worlds.

Marketers who help shape inclusive worlds within the metaverse where consumers can express their individuality and develop virtual identities will undoubtedly find success.

“One area of ​​particular interest is the relationship between identity and personality,” Snyder said, noting that “brands are learning that identity and personality are two different things and not always related.”

The concept of different identities within virtual worlds is also explored in this Item from Fast Company by Adobe designer Brooke Hopper, who advises marketers on helping consumers express their identity.

“Identity will play a key role in how people experience the metaverse. With new options for decorating personal VR spaces, avatars and more, there will be an increased need to generate content for these experiences and to enable users to create unique digital identities,” Hopper writes.

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