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Effective Brand Building In The Metaverse

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The metaverse is a wide open door for brands to connect with customers in a new way. Explore how to build your brand in the metaverse.

There is a growing awareness that brand-building in the metaverse can shift your marketing onto a new playing field.

Or is it multiverse?

With all the commotion surrounding the metaverse – especially within the marketing industry – there’s a fair amount of uncertainty and confusion.

And that’s understandable, as we’re all still figuring things out as we go.

But whether you like it or not, you need to buckle in.

According to Gartner, it won’t be long before a quarter of the world spends an hour or more each day in the metaverse.

Doing what, you cry?

Well, they’re doing whatever they usually do in the real world, according to Cryptoslate: their jobs, buying stuff, learning stuff, collecting stuff, and playing. Lots of playing.

And, it is potentially big money for businesses. Bloomberg Intelligence analysts forecast the scope for market opportunity is around the $800 billion mark.

So, now that I have your attention, here’s how to set your brand up for the long game that is the metaverse.

What Does “Metaverse” Even Mean?

I hear you; this is a lot to take in. So, in the words of Maria von Trapp, “Let’s start at the very beginning.”

Let’s break it up into “meta” and “verse.” Meta has several definitions, all of which fit perfectly here.

First, it can refer to something self-referencing or self-aware, like data about data (think: metadata).

Then, the Greek definition of meta is “beyond” or “after,” as in, the next thing, implying progress.

Verse, in this instance, is a shortening of the “universe.”

So, in essence, the metaverse is a progressive universe in which you exist as a highly self-aware avatar that allows you to engage and experience the 3D world beyond what you are capable of in the current “real world.”

That’s my definition of it, anyway.

While it might sound a bit like Second Life has had, well, a second wind, it’s not.

It’s not quite “Ready Player One” vibes. It’s actually a bunch of different 3D worlds hosted on different world-building platforms.

We call this the multiverse.

How Does It All Work?

Thanks to a more decentralized web 3.0 – the next evolution from web 2.0 – you can create content.

How is that different from web 2.0?

With web 2.0, centralized entities have power over access to the service.

Web 3.0, on the other hand, allows you to own, control, and monetize this content through blockchain and cryptocurrencies on the metaverse.

Brands get to choose where they want to exist in the metaverse.

They can have different styles and forms simultaneously active in many of these virtual lands, depending on who they want to reach, how they want to reach them, and with what product.

But how do we prevent the metaverse from turning into a lawless mess with all this freedom?

With the launch and growth of Metaverse Decentralized Autonomous Organizations (DAO) – we see the combination of blockchain and metaverse revolutionizing how crypto, autonomous governance, and community involvement are applied.

Why Should I Care About Brand Building In The Metaverse?

Aside from the potential to make big bucks, it is a great way to grow a connection with your customers.

There is tremendous brand power in owning the omnipresent experience with your client.

As with all things post-2020, authenticity and personalization are key, so this is a great opportunity to grow both.

It opens up a new, more effective way to build closer relationships between brand and customer.

Plus, brands can afford to be a bit more creative, experimental, and personalized in this space than in more traditional platforms. And immersive experiences and interactions are unparalleled in the metaverse.

How To Build Brand In The Metaverse

I’m not going to lie; brand-building in the metaverse has its challenges. But, if you get it right, you will reap the rewards.

The currency of choice in the metaverse is non-fungible tokens (NFTs).

Blockchain technology has never looked more attractive. NFTs are digital assets – think art, money, or even fine wine – stored on the blockchain and cannot be replicated or overwritten.

As with real-world assets, there is an original. There may be reproductions, but there’s but one master version.

In the metaverse, the NFT is authenticated by metadata and time stamps – code stored on the blockchain.

In this way, the NFT is a thing that can be owned, traded, bought and sold, collected, shared, desired, and admired – all within the virtual world you exist in.

Through this avenue of NFTs, brands can ramp up revenue and build.

And it’s not just the typical tech-heavy brands who are doing so. Gucci, Louis Vuitton, and Coca-Cola have already set up shop in the metaverse and are advertising products with great success to this plugged-in consumer base.

So, how do you do it?

Get Your Head In The Game

You can take this literally if you consider brand-building on Roblox, as Gucci did.

However, let me state that this is not something only big brand budgets can afford.

Content creators for brands of all sizes have the opportunity to build awareness in the metaverse.

You just need to wrap your head around what that will look like in virtual reality. I can’t even guide you here, as the options are limitless.

Start thinking about immersive experiences – things that you do in the real world that you’d like to replicate in the virtual world.

What does your target audience want to do in this space?

Watch a movie with friends, go to a concert, walk down a busy street? No problem. You can even give a corporate presentation in a virtual space, or do promos and branded giveaways.

However, before you get too carried away, I offer this word of caution: Keep your feet on the ground and your thoughts collected.

All marketing – in the metaverse or terra firma – needs to be aligned with your core branding objectives.

Do your research. Who is your target audience? What problem do you solve for them?

Does your target audience spend any time in the metaverse?

Does your brand benefit from radical marketing digitization? Don’t lose your head. Stay true to your brand objectives.

Explore Brand Gamification

The beauty of NFTs is that they can be integrated with most games.

That makes them a great way to reward loyal customers with desirable, one-off digital assets.

Never underestimate the power of desirability and scarcity – even in a digital world! Brands can use this innate trait in all of us to grow awareness, align messaging, incorporate brand values, and gain customer attention.

Create Immersive Experiences

I know I’m not the first to beat this drum. But it’s one of the ways that you build a brand in the metaverse.

How do you do this? You think about the sales process in the real world and then create out-of-this-world experiences that support that journey in the virtual world.

Your sales teams can give live presentations and demos to prospective clients in a bespoke location of your making.

Avatars can try on your products virtually and play the game in their bespoke branded clothing.

Not only is it cool, but it is also a passive way of growing your brand with other players.

They can sell, trade, and buy virtual versions of your products in their world with NFTs. They can display their NFT art in 3D galleries of their own design.

You can even use the metaverse for internal brand-building tactics.

Training, staff onboarding, and meetings can be hosted in a 3D space for optimal immersion. Rewards and recognition can be given through NFTs and cryptocurrency.

Think scarcity, think collectibles, think real emotion.

Create experiences that are highly immersive and build from there.

Hunker Down And Wait It Out

As with all emerging tech trends, it’s tough to know what direction this will take. At this point, you can still take a bit of a breath and observe.

Check out what the competition is doing. See what’s working, adopt, adapt, and improve.

Don’t wait too long, though, as you don’t want this train to pass you by.

The threat of getting lost in the metaverse crowd could be as challenging as being on page two of Google in the next few years!

Final Thoughts

The metaverse offers a unique, fresh, and highly immersive platform for brands to connect with their customers in a whole new way.

It’s set to become the new powerhouse of digitized marketing, from selling digital assets and merch to immersive team meetings.

As with all things marketing, get clarity on how your brand can feature in this space without losing its authentic brand voice. Keep your eye on the future of immersive brand building without losing sight of current marketing objectives.

So, whether your stance is to plan, play, or passively observe, the metaverse will not be ignored.

Thankfully, it is open to big and small brands. So get started!

If you are interested in original article by Alex Macura you can find it here

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How to create an NFT for free

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It’s easier to create an NFT for free than you’d think, here’s how.

In this tutorial I’ll share how to create an NFT for free. It’s easier to create, or ‘mint’, an NFT than you may think, and just as simple to do it for free. For this tutorial I’ll be focusing on creating a single NFT artwork, and not minting generative NFTs or an NFT collection.

So what are NFTs? These non-fungible tokens have taken the world by storm, but they’re not as complicated as you may believe. Fundamentally, NFTs are a way of registering a digital file on a cryptocurrency blockchain to ensure it is a one-of-a-kind item and show ownership. We have a full guide to how to make and sell an NFT, but here I’ll show you how to specifically create an NFT for free.

For artists NFTs can be transformative as they enable creators to own their digital work, sell it, and even earn percentages from future sales. In my interview with art curator Tina Ziegler she covers International Women’s day and World of Women NFTs, explaining how important NFTs can become for artists.

While you can create NFTs on your computer or laptop, you can even mint NFTs on your mobile. The best NFT apps for iPhone, for example, enable you to create an NFT on the go; or see how your collection is doing as well as track NFTs on various blockchains. With that in mind, some of the steps below for creating an NFT for free are applicable, but I’m using a desktop browser and Wacom Studio tablet.

How to create an NFT for free: the steps

01. Creating a crypto wallet account

You’re going to need a cryptocurrency wallet to set up an account on any NFT marketplace in order to create your NFT. We’re choosing Metamask as it’s one of the most widely used and accessible. There are alternatives, such as Coinbase wallet.

When you create your wallet account you’ll be given a 12 word ‘seed phrase’, this is your unique password. Keep it safe and don’t share it anywhere, the seed phrase acts as your security code (handy if you forget your password).

02. Making an account on an NFT marketplace

For this tutorial I’m creating an account on Rarible, but the same approach applies to any NFT marketplace. Read my guide to the best NFT marketplaces to find the right one for you.

Once you set up our account (adding a user name, photo, bio, etc.) link your Metamask account to your Rarible account by following the instructions. Linking your two accounts ensures your NFTs will appear in your wallet and all transactions can be easily completed (you’ll need to go into Metamask’s settings to automatically bring in your NFTs). My Metamask account also acts as my Rarible login.

Spend some time personalising your NFT marketplace account, adding a banner image, and linking in your social media accounts. The more time spent ensuring your socials are connected the better; you’ll find your art is more visible the more time you take to add detail into your page.

03. Painting some art

For this guide to how to create an NFT for free I quickly create a new piece of art. I google some random photo references and create a sketch using the painting app Rebelle 5; it’s quick and I’m not focusing on detail but a general sense of the face and proportions. (Read my Rebelle 5 review to find out more about this excellent digital art software.) 

An NFT can be any digital file so create the art you enjoy making, but here I’m choosing a digital painting. I save the new painting as a jpeg and prepare to upload it to my new NFT marketplace account and mint it as an NFT.

04. Uploading your art

It’s time to upload my art and begin creating an NFT for free. These NFT marketplace sites like Rarible have very user-friendly guides to uploading your art and the process is generally the same (some select NFT marketplaces may want verify you, and this can take a few days). Click the Create tab in the top right of your account and continue. 

You’ll now need to choose a blockchain. On Rarible there are four choices, including the new low-carbon cryptos Flow, Tezos and Polygon. (We have a must-read guide to the most popular NFT crypto to decide which is best for you.) To create an NFT for free I choose Ethereum.

05. Choosing free minting

The next options help your decide the value and type of NFT you’re creating, for example choose Single to create a one-off unique NFT or Multiple to mint a series of NFTs to create a collection. (Take a look at my NFT trends feature for inspiration.) Set the price, add a name and description, and make sure you switch Free Minting to ‘On’.

Free minting, or lazy minting, enables you to put the fees for minting onto the buyer so you won’t be charged. Usually you’re charged ‘gas fees’ – the cost of transacting on the blockchain – to mint an NFT. The unit of gas is called a ‘Gwei’. Depending on the traffic on the blockchain as you’re minting the fee can increase or decrease; the greater the traffic the higher the cost. Often it can be cheaper in the late evening or early morning.

But… I’m not being charged if I choose Free Minting. The downside to pushing the gas fees onto the buyer is you may need to lower your asking price to anticipate the later cost, or mint your NFT as an auction and let the buyer decide.

06. The NFT is minted

On Rarible, when the NFT is minted you get a lovely explosion of digital confetti. Now the real work begins. It’s best to social and post about your new NFT as soon as possible. You can link the new NFT directly to Twitter, Facebook, and other social media channels from within the NFT marketplace.

You see, minting an NFT for free is easy but there are some things you need to know; the advantage of free minting enables you to quickly create an NFT for free but it can have some drawbacks as NFT marketplaces tend to make ‘normal’ NFTs more visible. Because of this you’ll need to make more of your own social channels for promotion. You can find this NFT on Rarible to see how it looks in the wild.

How to create an NFT for free: frequent questions

What’s a blockchain?

This is a database that is shared amongst the nodes of a computer network. Each block in the chain contains data and constantly check and update the data. This makes any assets on the blockchain immutable, which ensures the data is extremely hard to change or delete. These are decentralised networks, meaning there is no third-party involved and all data is freely available for view and tracking.

What gives an NFT value?

Rarity and / or status help an NFT achieve value. So, for example, an NFT created by established artists such as Beeple, Damien Hirst, and Takashi Murakami will be worth a lot.
But NFTs are breaking the rules. New artists are finding new ways to ensure NFTs differ from traditional art valuations. Community and utility is a major factor. Think of an NFT such as a Bored Ape Yacht Club as a ticket to a club, and that club will have exclusive events, chat groups and projects to be involved with; these community driven NFTs have great value. 

Why is an NFT jpeg worth so much?

An NFT jpeg is worth so much because it’s not the jpeg that is being bought, but the hash token on the blockchain. The Crypto Punk art is the visual ‘thing’ we can find easy to understand, but the true value of the NFT is its token and the benefits it can bring by being on a blockchain. This can include being invited to exclusive in real life events. 

How much does it cost to make an NFT?

It can be free, if you use lazy minting. Standard NFTs can vary wildly in the cost of gas fees to generate and register on a blockchain, and the costs rises and falls as the blockchain is being used. A typical NFT can cost anywhere from $10 / £7 to ¢$200 / £170. We have known of fees to reach $2,000 / £1,700. 

What kinds of NFTs sell the best?

NFTs that have utility will always sell well as they embrace the full functionality of the blockchain. This is why you will find the below NFTs are some of the most popular.

1. Bored Ape Yacht Club
2. CryptoPunks
3. The Sandbox
4. Art Blocks
5. Doodles
6. Cool Cats
7. Decentraland
8. World of Women

Can I avoid gas fees without using lazy minting?

Yes, to a degree. Newer NFT crypto blockchains such as Wax enable you to set the gas fee limit you’re will to pay to mint an NFT. It will be processed and minted at a time when the gas fee matches your set level. Also, consider avoiding minting an NFT on Tuesdays and Thursdays as these are historically the busiest days and so the costliest. 

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in the article are for general informational purposes only and are not intended to provide specific financial or investment advice or recommendations for any individual for any investment product. The article is only intended to provide general information and opinions about NFTs. The views reflected in this article are subject to change at any time without notice.

If you are interested in original article by Ian Dean you cna find it here

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Metaverse Marketing Myths, Musts & Mantras #WAGMI

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Learn how the metaverse creates new possibilities for brands and marketers to connect with the community using NFTs, crypto, and more.

When brands like JP Morgan, Nike, Playboy, Adidas, and McDonald’s enter the metaverse, do we all jump in?

Or are we already in, and we don’t even realize it?brands active in the metaverseImage from Blockdata.tech, February 2022

Brands In The Metaverse

Probably nothing. Right?

Tell that to these brands who are

JP Morgan Is Banking On It

JP Morgan is the first bank to stake its claim in the metaverse by setting up a lounge in Decentraland, a 3D virtual world browser-based platform.

The banking brand’s lounge touts a monthly active user base of about 300,000 people and 18,000 daily users, according to Decentraland co-founder Ari Meilich in a recent interview.

In its report Opportunities in the Metaverse, JP Morgan highlighted:

“The metaverse is estimated to be a trillion-dollar revenue opportunity across advertising, social commerce, digital events, hardware, and developer/creator monetization.”

Nike Dips A Toe In The Metaverse

Nike created its metaverse studio back in June 2021 before the word metaverse became mainstream, thanks to Mark Zuckerberg announcing the Meta rebrand of Facebook last October.

The sportswear brand acquired RTFKT, a digital sneaker company enabling them to create NFT shoes.

The swoosh-famous company revealed NIKELAND, a virtual world modeled after its headquarters on video game platform Roblox Corp (RBLX.N), becoming one of the first big brands to enter the “metaverse.”

Playboy Is All Ears

The iconic lifestyle brand Playboy unveiled a collection of NFTs: Playboy Rabbitars.

They released 11,953 unique 3D rabbit characters in NFT form and sold out in three minutes.

Available on the Opensea marketplace, each NFT came with special perks such as a membership to the Playboy Club and other exclusive benefits.

NFTs Are No Monkey Business

In news that almost broke Twitter, Adidas announced INTO THE METAVERSE, an exclusive NFT drop of digital and physical products in collaboration with G Money, Pixel Vault, and the Bored Apes Yacht Club.

“These communities aren’t collecting hyped-up tokens, they have a stake in the future of that community, and I think we can learn something about that. When we think about the role that we can play as a brand to be that trusted friend of our members looking to join this space,” Tareq Nazlawy, Senior Director Digital at Adidas, said in a December announcement.

Big Macs Go Digital

Fries and a digital cheeseburger, please.

McDonald’s is preparing to open virtual restaurants serving up NFTs and offering home delivery from a virtual restaurant.

Defining The Metaverse + A Look Back In Time

In this revolutionary phase, no one can quite define the metaverse yet.

It is an evolving next phase of the Internet, and calling it Web 3.0 might be more accurate.

Let’s look at the evolution of media and tech in the Internet world.

You can find original article by Lisa Buyer here

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