How do Consumers Really Feel About Fashion Brands in the Metaverse?
Last week, we analyzed how fashion brands were stepping into the metaverse and how they were branding themselves within the space, but we couldn’t just leave it at that. We decided to evaluate people's reactions to these ventures, the discourse taking place around it, and some key takeaways as well.
Our Culture AI reviewed over 1,700 comments left on the brands’ promotional videos and related tweets and found that there were only 7.8% of negative sentiments found within the texts, as compared to 92.2% positive ones. Evidently, fashion brands have been generally welcomed in the metaverse space, but we do have a few observations:
Negative sentiments may only make up a small percentage, but within that, we found gamers and people who are knowledgeable about the metaverse, and are very passionate about their dissatisfaction. While gamers are informed on new technologies and game features, they are usually quite reluctant to accept it as they are fiercely loyal to their chosen games.
Incorporating NFTs did work. They are the current “it” item of the digital assets world and obtaining one today can be compared to purchasing status symbols, like getting the latest designer handbag. It’s human nature to want to possess or collect something that everyone else wants, so by incorporating NFTs, they were able to generate interest from a wider audience. Both Louis Vuitton and Nike’s NFT collectibles helped to generate a lot of buzz for their metaverse ventures and received positive reviews.
The intersection of fashion and gaming is nothing new, but when entering the metaverse, choosing the right platforms to be on are crucial. Gucci’s partnership with Roblox seemed to puzzle a lot of people, with many questioning what a luxury brand was doing on a gaming platform that was popular with children. Their first foray, Gucci Garden was criticized for not being well thought out, which turned a lot of people off their next one, Gucci Town. Making sure these partnerships stay true to their own brand and values is also an important thing to note. Balenciaga has always been receptive to tech innovations and had in fact launched its own original video game (‘Afterworld: The Age of Tomorrow’) prior to their collaboration with Fortnite, so this partnership seemed authentic and very much on-brand for them.
In the same vein, seeking advice or working with experts is an important step in having a successful launch in the metaverse. 10 of the 30 NFTs in Louis Vuitton’s game were created by popular NFT artist Beeple, and Nike acquired leading digital sneaker creator RTFKT Studios soon after its debut of NIKELAND. Together, they launched their first collection of NFT sneakers, with a pair of Dunk Genesis Cryptokicks selling for $130,000. It was also a loud statement by the brand that they weren’t just jumping on the bandwagon, but they were serious about the brand’s digital transformation.
The technology still isn’t flawless. Glitching does occasionally happen on online gaming platforms, but there was a significant number of tweets complaining about it, aimed directly at the gaming platform or brand’s profiles.
Shopping in the metaverse is an enjoyable experience for consumers. Walking into a physical luxury store can be daunting for many, but shopping in a virtual showroom takes away the fear factor and any biases that people may face in the real world.
Each of these ventures had varying degrees of success, but they remain some of the most significant ones to date despite dozens of brands joining them in the space. At the moment, it appears that brands are seeing the metaverse as a tool for marketing purposes or to add PR value, but we believe that it won’t be long before we start seeing its technologies as an essential part of their businesses.
We applaud the brands for their efforts to experiment and trying to stay ahead of the curve. At the rate at which the metaverse is growing, every brand should be preparing a solid meta-strategy. While not every brand will succeed in the economy, everyone can, and should, be participating.
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