10 augustus | Written by Trevor Clawson
For the first time an automated advertising system has been created for the metaverse. With a few clicks you can book a billboard ad campaign in a virtual world. Your ads are even protected against bots. The initiative comes from NFT Plazas. But as the metaverse is going mainstream, research still points to one problem: many consumers don't understand it.
When you want to reach a specific target group such as young gamers, the metaverse is your place to be. NFT Plazas, based in Manchester, has launched the world's first automated metaverse advertising system. With the new booking system users can upload customized billboard advertisements to be displayed at advertising kiosk locations in Decentraland. There are plans to expand the system into Somnium Space, Voxels and other virtual worlds in the coming weeks.
"This is the first step to making metaverse advertising easily accessible for any forward-thinking brands looking for exposure in the metaverse," Chris Thomas, founder of NFT Plazas, explains in Tech Times. With the use of a simple five clicks, brands can plug directly into the Decentraland community who regularly visits the virtual billboard kiosks.
Spikes in traffic during virtual events
For many the metaverse is still a magic world that behaves in unexpected ways. Sometimes advertisers see spikes in traffic. Possibly a hosted event takes place near one of the advertising kiosks, which can attract a lot of visitors. Pop stars holding virtual concerts sometimes attract millions of fans, but as a brand you need to be there at the right time. The booking system is still in its early stages and it is uncertain when exactly an add will be displayed, but improvements are on the way.
"The metaverse is developing rapidly. What about the great popularity of online gaming and e-sports, which come close to the metaverse? Advertising on digital billboards has been available for some time in online games, also a kind of virtual worlds," says Sjef Kerkhofs, managing director at daily dialogues. "As a company I would like to experiment. If your target audience are the early adopters of VR and the metaverse, now you have a great chance to make a difference."
Monitoring your metaverse ad campaign
Like in other digital advertising systems, clients can monitor the progress of their campaign, in this case on a daily basis. Reporting includes the total number of views so far, views by location in the metaverse, and language of visitors. As the system is still in its early stages, more characteristics will be added in the future, such as age groups. "As a brand, you don't really have to target yet, because in the metaverse you still mainly find early adopters. If the metaverse becomes a commonplace, the number of specifications and features for ads will automatically increase as well," Kerkhofs explains.
Pay-per-view metaverse advertising
To take part in a metaverse advertising system, it helps when you are familiar with virtual worlds such as Decentraland. In a video NFT Plazas explains the steps. The automated booking system works on a pay-per-view basis. You can choose the amount of views you want to receive for your ad campaign. The value of advertising in the metaverse is in the words of NFT Plazas that it enables brands "to get your message to a highly targeted, global audience in a matter of minutes."
Views are counted when your billboard ad is loaded and displayed, which is triggered by somebody visiting one of the locations in Decentraland. NFT Plazas says there is spam bot protection, which prevents bots from refreshing the browser and constantly loading up the displays in the same location. So, every time your ad is displayed a visitor has arrived.
Research: consumers aware of the metaverse
The metaverse is becoming more mainstream, but many consumers still have difficulty to understand it. In a survey, published by Marketing Dive, nearly 75% of consumers say they are aware of the metaverse, but only 15% of them say they can explain what the metaverse is to others. Some worries persist: 72% of parents are concerned about children's privacy and 66% about children's safety. The researchers conclude that brands can profit from the metaverse. A majority of consumers (89%) expects advertising would be an industry impacted by the metaverse. Other top-ranking categories included retail (86%), fashion (85%) and finance (82%). Food and beverage (74%) landed at the bottom of the list.
NFT Plazas expects advertising in the metaverse will be essential for creators and companies that want to showcase their brand. NFT Plazas is a frontrunner, and more agencies will probably offer automated advertising opportunities for the metaverse in the near future. Kerkhofs: "Especially in the initial phase, you can make a difference as a brand compared to your competitors, if you target early adopters. In the case of the metaverse, these are mainly young people. We have seen it in a similar way with Snapchat and TikTok. In the early phase, rates for advertising are low and the impact is large. So, make use of it, if it makes sense for your brand to be there."