As part of our deep dive into the metaverse and Web3, we’ve compiled capsule case studies of ten companies that have already begun exploring the metaverse. From food and beverage companies, to banks and investment firms, to fashion companies, here’s what they’re doing — or planning.
Objective: Marketing / Engaging Customers
Initiative: After experimenting with NFTs, Coca-Cola has made another foray into the Metaverse with its Coca-Cola Creations line, which are beverages purchased in the physical world that can unlock experiences in the metaverse. The company has released two iterations of its Creations line — one called Starlight and another named Zero Sugar Byte. Starlight, the earlier of the two products, enabled users to scan their bottle or can with a phone to unlock special augmented reality concerts featuring the singer Ava Max. By scanning the second Creations product, Zero Sugar Byte, users can unlock exclusive entry to Pixel Point, Coca-Cola’s island inside the videogame Fortnite. The island, created in partnership with PWR, a gaming company, allows users to play four augmented reality games. Access to these features is only available after purchasing Coca-Cola Creations products.
More Info: Coca-Cola Press Release
Objective: Sales / Meeting Consumers Where They Are / Customer Acquisition / Providing Services
Initiative: In late February 2022, CVS Health filed a trademark application that may lay the groundwork for doing business in the metaverse. The trademark covers selling virtual, downloadable goods, like medications and health and beauty items, as well as offering health services. The goal of the project is partially to meet CVS customers — existing and potential — where they are. CVS spokespeople have made it clear that the company has begun moving toward a more virtual-centric approach to customer interaction. But since filing the trademark application in March 2022, CVS has not yet made a concrete move into the metaverse.
More Info: The Block
Objective: Customer Acquisition / Self Expression / Marketing
Partners: Alex Box, Decentraland
Initiative: Beauty and cosmetics brand Estée Lauder dipped a manicured toe into the metaverse in March 2022, during Metaverse Fashion Week. The brand partnered with Decentraland, a virtual world owned by users, where the event occurred. Estée Lauder created an NFT based on one of its most famous products, Advanced Night Repair, a skin serum designed to make consumers’ skin glow. Alex Box, an artist well-known in the metaverse, helped to design the NFT, which was free to 10,000 attendees of the fashion event. Users could keep the wearable NFT for use in Decentraland even after the event concluded. Spokespeople for Estée Lauder said the company is looking to redefine beauty and its expression, both in the physical and virtual worlds. Though the cosmetics company does not offer a retail store inside Decentraland, its fashion week appearance put the brand on the map for metaverse users.
More Info: WWD
Objective: Customer Acquisition / Education / Metaverse Real Estate Purchase
Initiative: Financial services firm Fidelity Investments has a variety of ways customers — prospective and existing — can interact with the company in the metaverse. Fidelity began selling an exchange-traded fund (ETF) in late April called the Fidelity Metaverse Index (FMET), which tracks the global movement of companies working to enhance the metaverse. Beyond that, Fidelity has also purchased real estate in the Decentraland metaverse. The firm’s eight-story building, called the Fidelity Stack, allows metaverse users to engage in various interactive experiences that allow them to learn more about investing, the metaverse, and FMET. Fidelity has been looking to engage a new generation of investors, which became the driving force for its new building in Decentraland.
More Info: Fidelity
Objective: Metaverse Real Estate Purchase / Marketing / Consumer Engagement
Initiative: Gucci recently launched Gucci Town in the Roblox metaverse. Gucci Town is a more persistent investment in the metaverse for the luxury fashion brand, which had previously partnered with Roblox for shorter-term experiences, like Gucci Garden, which attracted millions of visitors in its two-week run. In Gucci Town, users can purchase virtual merchandise at the Gucci Shop, make virtual art in the Creative Corner, and participate in various contests run by Gucci. Gucci Town also features the Vault Plaza, an experimental virtual exhibition space. Gucci Town is expected to evolve over time.
More Info: The Verge
Objective: Metaverse Real Estate Purchase / Brand Awareness
Initiative: Financial institution JPMorgan Chase built a lounge in Decentraland called the Onyx Lounge. The lounge itself does not have interactive features or sell NFTs, but it is a developed piece of real estate in the virtual world. The bank’s executives have said people may soon expect that interactions that were previously conducted in person will shift into to the virtual world. And since experts predict the metaverse will have its own currencies and GDP, JPMorgan’s expertise in banking and transactions could make it a key player. The financial firm has also released a research report on the profitability and viability of the metaverse, which estimates the metaverse will become part of every sector.
More Info: USA Today
Objective: Consumer Engagement / Self Expression
Initiative: Technology mogul Samsung has built its own world inside the metaverse; it’s called Samsung 837X. While 837X originally launched in January, a new, more advanced version came out in late March. Users now have the option to choose their own adventure with 837X’s “You make it” quest, which provides a unique experience for each user. Upon completing the quest, users are presented with a You make it NFT for the 837X world. Because of the highly customized nature of the design, Samsung partnered with Pixelmind, a company which uses artificial intelligence to create the art users see on their interfaces. Samsung has stated the world was built based upon its flagship store in New York City.
More Info: Samsung
Objective: Facilitating Transactions / Marketing / Consumer Engagement
Partner: Boson Protocol
Initiative: Like some other luxury fashion brands, Tommy Hilfiger joined Metaverse Fashion Week, hosted in Decentraland in late March. When users teleported to Boson Protocol’s Fashion District in Decentraland, they could enter the Tommy Hilfiger store, where they saw floating renderings of the Tommy Hilfiger collection and a special sweatshirt for sale. Consumers could purchase NFTs for their metaverse avatars through the Decentraland Marketplace, but they could also purchase goods in the metaverse that would be shipped to their address in the physical world through Boson Protocol, which provides infrastructure for e-commerce transactions. Tommy Hilfiger has previously worked in the augmented reality space, having launched partnerships with Animal Crossing and Roblox in 2020 and 2021, respectively.
More Info: Forbes
Objective: Meeting Consumers Where They Are / Self-Expression
Partner: The Gang Stockholm
Initiative: Vans created an interactive experience inside Roblox called “Vans World,” where fans of the skateboarding brand can purchase customizable merchandise to wear while they skateboard in the metaverse. Vans partnered with The Gang Stockholm, a group of community developers for Roblox that help to execute on design and technology inside the virtual realm. Vans World offers virtual shoes, skateboard parts, and accessories that can be bought with Robux, the currency used inside Roblox. Consumers can also collect a free “item of the day” in Vans World.
More info: USA Today
Objective: Marketing / Consumer Engagement / Sales
Initiative: In late 2021, Nike launched Nikeland, a virtual experience in the Roblox metaverse where users can play games and purchase digital Nike products to wear. Users can participate in games like dodgeball, tag, and more on Nikeland’s interactive courts and fields. Nike merchandise can be worn outside of Nikeland, in other parts of Roblox. Special guest stars have made appearances in Nikeland including Lebron James. Nikeland also gives users the opportunity bridge the real and digital worlds by using fitness trackers in smartphones to keep tabs on offline movement and translate it to metaverse play. In December 2021, Nike acquire RTFKT Studios (pronounced “artifact”), which was making and selling NFT collectibles.
More info: Forbes