If you’re still wondering what the heck the metaverse is, exactly, and what it will actually look like, Meta has today shared a new vision of a branded space within its VR Horizon Worlds experience that showcases how it views brands adapting to the more immersive experience.
As you can see here, the ‘Wendyverse’ is a VR creation made by the team from Wendy’s, which enables VR users to explore and interact with various objects and spaces via their headset.
As explained by Meta:
“On Saturday, April 2nd, Wendy’s is launching its first virtual space in Horizon Worlds in collaboration with Horizon Worlds creators. People with Meta Quest 2 devices will be able to access and experience the first virtual Wendy’s restaurant and venture into a new world designed exclusively for them. Visitors will be able to walk behind the counter, interact with friends and embark on a mouth-watering adventure.”
The examples provide a glimpse into what Meta envisions as the future of branded social interactions, with all brands eventually able to create their own digital experiences, that will not only involve enable in-world engagement, but also, real-world purchases, with items able to be viewed, tried on, examined in detail, and even placed in your home via AR, helping to guide purchase decisions.
In some respects, these VR worlds will become like an in-store showcase, with brands able to present all of their items in digital form, and users able to ask questions and engage - just as they would with a real-world salesperson.
The view in this respect incorporates Meta’s expanded push on eCommerce, which includes catalog feed ingestion, and will eventually enable businesses to scan in 3D models of all of their products, that will then be represented, in correct scale, in these ‘metaverse’ experiences.
It’s not hard to see the potential here – but even so, a fully immersive, interactive metaverse experience is still a way off, and while the Wendyverse looks futuristic and interesting, and could have a range of engaging elements, it’s still far from the grander vision of what the metaverse will be, and how it will facilitate deeper engagement.
But we’re starting to see the building blocks – you can now see with more clarity what the metaverse is, in Meta’s view at least, and what it will be, and how that will then facilitate various types of branded interactions and engagements, expanding across our virtual and physical selves.
In this sense, it’s likely worth experimenting with, like Wendy’s, and getting a sense of what’s possible, and how these tools could be used in your brand and promotional efforts.
It’s not an essential skill for marketers as yet, but it soon may well be, and the more you understand about VR creation, and the tools under development, the better placed you’ll be to maximize your opportunities in the next stage.