A new form of advertising: Is This The Metaverse? Podcast, episode 5

This article is part of a special Digiday Podcast series that breaks down how people are translating their physical lives into virtual worlds — and how brands and platforms are looking to make money from all this activity. More from the series →

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The metaverse is built to sell ads.

It’s not a secret. In recent years, executives at companies like Meta and Roblox have thrown millions of dollars into their goal of building an immersive virtual world. Eventually, they must figure out a return on that investment — and, like any new media channel, advertising looks to be the most promising way to do that.

It all started with video games. For years now, games like FIFA and NBA 2K have seamlessly integrated brands into their in-game environments in a way that doesn’t even register as advertising to most players. More recently, platforms like Horizon and Roblox have taken virtual ads a step further, building out custom-branded digital stores and even programmatic ads in metaverse environments.

In the fifth episode of Is This The Metaverse? hosts Alexander Lee and Sara Patterson discuss the inevitability of advertising in the metaverse, speaking to some of the advertising and tech executives behind the effort to convert users’ virtual eyeballs into tangible revenue. Metaverse builders are trying to build a new virtual world — and, like every aspect of the physical world, brands are jockeying to be part of it.

In six episodes, Is This The Metaverse? elevates the perspective of both the companies converting physical experiences into virtual entertainment — via fitness, concerts, fashion, advertising and co-working — and the individuals who are actually hanging out inside these virtual spaces. It will explore why people are motivated to spend time inside the metaverse, and how their motivations can mesh, or clash, with the platforms’ desire to make a profit.

Is This The Metaverse? is co-hosted by Alexander Lee, Digiday’s senior gaming and esports reporter, and Digiday audio producer Sara Patterson, with Glossy international fashion reporter Zofia Zwieglinska guest-hosting an episode on virtual fashion. Subscribe to Is This The Metaverse? now on Apple Podcasts — or wherever you get your podcasts.


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