Mar 9, 2022
The digital world moves at an unfathomable pace. What’s relevant today could be obsolete tomorrow.
If the past few years has taught us anything, it’s that the digital world knows barely any bounds. As technology continues to evolve with full force, and the future of marketing after Covid-19 evolves, the needs and expectations of consumers continue to shift.
With access to almost limitless information from the swipe of a screen or the click of a button, today’s digitally native consumers (chiefly millennials and gen zers) command a deep level of value or personalization from brands across industries.
Just when you think you have your marketing strategy all sewn up, a new trend, algorithm or innovation comes along to sweep the virtual rug from under your feet. And, guess what? Another change is coming.
The metaverse and Web 3.0 are here—and it’s likely to change digital marketing as we know it. To help you prepare for this brave new digital age, here we explain what the metaverse and Web 3.0 is as well as the digital marketing skills you will need to succeed.
Let’s start with a quick recap of Web 3.0 and the metaverse.
First, we had Web 1.0—the original incarnation of the internet that was launched in the early 1990s. This decentralized version of the web was limited in scope and formed the initial building blocks of the Web 2.0—the hyper-connected and increasingly personalized version of the net that we all know today.
Web 3.0 is the next stage in the evolution of the internet—and it’s a concept that’s going to change the way we interact within the digital realm. This new version of the world wide web is an extension of the interconnected, mobile-centric, app-based evolution of the net and it is set to give users more control over their digital destinies.
As Web 3.0 continues to evolve, we will see things become more decentralized, giving people the power to create their own branches of the web using emerging technologies such as blockchain. In this new, more immersive digital playing field, users will have greater control over their personal data and, as such, be able to use it as an asset.
"Web 3.0 will bring us a fairer internet by enabling the individual to be a sovereign. True sovereignty implies owning and being able to control who profits from one’s time and information. Web 3.0’s decentralized blockchain protocol will enable individuals to connect to an internet where they can own and be properly compensated for their time and data," Charles Silver, writing in Forbes.
Now, onto the metaverse. A term that frequently pops up in science fiction literature, the metaverse has always been understood as a digital realm where people can experience the web (consisting largely of Web 3.0 innovations and applications) immersively, experiencing gamification, apps, and content in an almost tangible, three dimensional sense. It can, in fact, be seen as a marketer’s playground.
Essentially, the metaverse is the VR and AR-driven world that once seemed like a far-flung futuristic concept—except now it’s starting to become an everyday reality. Here are the seven layers of the metaverse, according to this graphic from VR Vision:
As we experience a huge paradigm shift that improves the security, connectivity, immersivity, and personal ownership of the world wide web, it’s vital to update your digital marketing skills to meet the needs of your audience in this ever-changing landscape.
While you will continually need to adapt and evolve to remain impactful and relevant, here are some of the core digital marketing skill areas that will help you succeed in the age of the metaverse.
As we migrate into an age where the web becomes less centralized and the big players will no longer have sole monopoly of the world wide web, building on your content marketing skills is essential.
Rather than developing value-driven content based on particular keywords or phrases, Web 3.0 will command brands and marketers to take a semantic approach to their content creation efforts. The semantic approach means developing targeted content based on an entire topic, with detailed, value-driven insights that match a user’s search intent completely.
Here are some ways to tackle your semantic content marketing efforts:
Leveling-up your content marketing skills to ensure your communications and ideas are based on offering precise insight and deep personal relevance will drive genuine engagement while improving your search engine rankings in the age of the metaverse.
Plus, in this bold new world, Forbes believes that user-generated content (UCG) will become even more valuable as people will be incentivized by tokens, or virtual currency, giving them ownership of their content as well as a stake in publication or platform. As such leveraging UGC is likely to build greater trust, authority, and awareness in Web 3.0.
User experience (UX) has been a critical focus for digital marketers for some time now—and a more immersive, less centralized age, digging deeper into your skillset will result in that all-important competitive edge.
Tomorrow's websites, platforms or online stores will need to be 100% interactive, user-friendly and even three dimensional (3D) to make it in the metaverse. To meet the new needs or expectations of consumers, developing your UX design and communication skills is essential.
By discovering innovative new ways to create a completely frictionless experience that brings a user closer to your brand, you will win on tomorrow’s commercial battlefield. And, that’s why upskilling yourself in the field of UX is so important.
Our guide to the importance of user experience will give you the information and inspiration you need to start your UX journey.
Building on the previous point: as we move into a more interactive, immersive space, virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) will become a vital aspect of offering a valuable user experience.
Getting to grips with immersive marketing techniques, tools, and platforms will prove essential in web 3.0 and the metaverse. Users will expect a 3D dimensional experience that, in a sense, bridges the gap between the physical and digital world.
Ralph Lauren, for instance, teamed up with the social networking avatar simulation platform, Zepto, to move the retail industry in an immersive direction. The brand created a clothing range exclusively with Zepto, allowing users to sample items using their digital avatars and interact with their potential purchases before deciding.
Well-known gaming platforms that currently operate in this area are Minecraft, Roblox, Pokemon, and Fortnite, many of which are familiar to the freshest digitally native demographic of all—Generation Alpha.
As a digital channel, the metaverse is in its marketing infancy, but recent campaigns have seen brands across industries embrace its immersive nature to advertise. For instance, Roblox hosted Gucci Garden, a place where visitors could try on and purchase digital Gucci products to personalize their avatars. Its aim was to raise brand awareness among younger consumers.
This type of innovation and these kinds of partnerships will become commonplace in tomorrow’s world, and as a marketer, it will become your duty to help make them a reality.
“I do think that a significant portion of the population of developed countries, and eventually all countries, will have AR experiences every day, almost like eating three meals a day. It will become that much a part of you” Tim Cook, Apple CEO on the metaverse
A new age is dawning, but there’s no need to fear it. With the right preparation and digital marketing skills, you can transform change into opportunity, using your creativity to push yourself ahead of the pack, one innovative initiative at a time.
Welcome to the metaverse and to gain the skills you need to thrive with Web 3.0
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