Meet Florence. She is bold, resilient and hardworking. She is very determined and never afraid of a challenge. Florence loves rare, handcrafted, collectable objects and unique pieces of art. She works for Kinahan’s whiskey and says she has an attitude “because I have earned it”.
The problem is Florence doesn’t exist – not in a physical sense anyhow. She is a digital brand ambassador for the whiskey brand and she lives in Kinahan’s Meta World, a virtual reality experience created in the metaverse.
In Kinahan’s Meta World, whiskey fans can learn more about the brand’s products in a more experiential way from Florence and the other digital brand ambassador avatars the company has created, as well as buy, win or pre-order Kinahan’s 3D-, AR- and VR-enabled digital merchandise, such as NFTs.
Kinahan’s is among the drinks brands at the forefront of marketing in the metaverse. It believes that over the next decade or so – maybe sooner – the metaverse will play a vital role in how brands across all sectors interact with consumers.
So which drinks brands have experimented in the metaverse so far, how might they use the technology in the future – and what actually is it?
Tackling the last question first, Rupantar Guha, project manager for thematic intelligence at GlobalData, explains: “The metaverse is a virtual world where users share experiences and interact in real-time within simulated scenarios.”
He says brands from the beverage sector are entering the space to engage with existing users and attract new customers. “These brands are experimenting with gamified content, virtual concerts, and non-fungible tokens (NFTs) for customer engagement. Their target audience is Generation Z, a digitally savvy cohort that is typically difficult to reach via traditional advertising channels.”
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