Exploring the Metaverse, analysing its inner workings and user base
On October 28th 2021, Facebook announced the launch and rebranding to Meta instead of Facebook. The rebranding is said to have no impact on the existing Facebook products or service, it is intended to facilitate the expansion of the brand as a whole. The Metaverse is the flagship launch under the new identity of Meta.
The Metaverse is essentially a virtual or augmented reality experience where users are interacting with a computer generated environment. The essential components to understand in order to analyse the current state of the Metaverse, is the role of NFTs in the Metaverse, the recent stock price crash, and the potential ban of Europe for Facebook.
Who will be the Metaverse user base and use case?
The user base of the Metaverse skews slightly male with a percentage of 54%. The primary age range of Metaverse users is 25-34. The primary geographic location of this user base is the United States and China. There are many use cases for the Metaverse, there is a lot of creativity and consumer input that will develop and adapt what the Metaverse can be used for. Many of the use cases are things we cannot currently envision and do not currently exist within any other medium. Currently the primary identified use cases that we can expect to see when the Metaverse is released are work, business applications, and entertainment.
Emotional response to the potential shutdown of Facebook in the EU
In order for Facebook to continue providing its service in Europe a new transatlantic data transfer framework will need to be accepted. If this does not occur, Facebook will shut down in Europe. This is currently causing a great deal of global outcry and controversy. Facebook is putting a lot of pressure on the EU to adapt and change their privacy legislation to loosen the current regulations.
We can see below that the general response is very negative and upset. The top three emotional responses we can see are Disapproval, Anger, and Admiration. It is not surprising to see the top two emotional reactions being disapproval and anger. It is clear that many users are very upset about potentially losing Facebook. Currently around 82% of Europe uses Facebook. We can also see that many people are expressing their admiration for others who are standing up for this change and speaking out to voice their opinion, and for the EU not giving in and changing their privacy legislations simply due to the threats of a large corporation.
The employment status of those concerned with the Meta stock price crash
Below we can see that the top three above average employment statuses are student, part-time worker, and unemployed. These results are very interesting and are not the typical expected distribution. We can see a distinct trend that this audience is not employed full-time, instead this audience had extremely above average levels of students and part-time workers. This is because there is a current trend to invest in stocks earlier and while in school. We can also see that many people invest in stocks to subsidise their part time work. Many people are choosing to make additional income through the stock market to support them working preferred jobs. This is in part due to stock trading becoming more and more accessible and easy for people to take advantage of, through apps such as Acorn and RobinHood
Educational levels of those involved in NFTs within the Metaverse
An NFT (non-fungible token) is a critical component of the Metaverse. The Metaverse is built around digital art, digital designs, and digital content. These aspects will be primarily developed through the platform of NFTs. Understanding how people are reacting to NFTs within the Metaverse is a key component for comprehending audience opinions towards the entire Metaverse. Below we can see that the top three educational levels within this audience are Schooling under the age of 18, trade or technical school, and a university degree. We can see that for the most part the people within this audience are either educated or pursuing a specific trade or skill. This makes a lot of sense as NFTs are complicated to understand and purchase. Moreover, NFTs naturally appeal more to those who are younger and more forward thinking, as they are keeping up with new trends within technology and social media.
Critical applications and considerations of this research
One of the crucial insights from this research is that the use and focus of the Metaverse will surround artistic expression, content creation, lifestyle, and business/work.
- Artistic expression – the Metaverse is intended to be one of the primary display functions and interaction methods for NFTs, promoting and supporting the artists that create NFTs. This will be a critical asset and path to market for artists to sell, advertise, or promote their work. Whether their work is currently an NFT or not, it can become an NFT and be monetized within the Metaverse.
- Content creation – content creators will have a new outlet for their craft, the Metaverse will give rise to new mediums of content creation. It is critical to understand the audiences within the Metaverse to more accurately target and keep up with the newest trends within content creation.
- Lifestyle – the augmented reality component of the Metaverse is an ideal opportunity for companies within this space to expand their offerings to better tailor towards use within the Metaverse. There will also most likely be a significant increase in sales once the Metaverse is launched.
- Business/work – the Metaverse has a strong use case value proposition for businesses and those in school or working from home. Therefore, it is essential to target and adapt these practices and associated products to support and better lend themselves to the Metaverse.
There is far more that can be learned from the Metaverse, to gain more insight and find out more please keep in touch and look out for the full report!