Ever since the internet's birth in 1983, it has gone through several changes that have changed how the entire human race functions daily. But the next big change — the web 3.0 and the metaverse — is looking like it will be the most groundbreaking evolution yet.
According to Gartner, 25% of all people will spend at least an hour every day in the Metaverse by 2026. People will partake in everyday activities like shopping, learning, working, and socializing in new, immersive, virtual worlds.
But what really is the metaverse? And how can your business take advantage of this digital artificial intelligence platform?
In this article, we'll tell you everything you need to know about the metaverse and video conversational AI. Keep reading to learn more.
What Is the Metaverse?
At this point, you've probably heard about the metaverse and have a vague conception of what it is. But let's be honest, it can be a hard subject to wrap your head around.
The metaverse doesn't actually refer to any specific type of technology. Rather, it's more of an evolutionary shift in how we interact with technology in general.
Some companies refer to the metaverse as a place that can be accessed by virtual reality. These worlds continue to exist and thrive even when you don't participate in them. Imagine interactive video game worlds. Here, players can create their own characters and live different lives.
Other companies refer to the metaverse as a new kind of digital economy. Here, people can buy and sell products in a new way that can be used online or in the real world.
The entertainment industry is already using the metaverse in unique ways. For example, a music fan can enjoy a concert with millions of others from the comfort of their couch.
Simply put — the metaverse refers to the idea of interacting with virtual worlds the same way we interact with the real world.
Why Should Brands Consider the Metaverse For Their Marketing Roadmap?
The metaverse offers a whole new frontier for users to experience life in a new way. This marks a huge opportunity for organizations to reach their consumers.
Think about the invention of television, the radio, and streaming services. These offered completely new landscapes for advertising. The metaverse will also offer a new customer experience.
Although some people might be skeptical of how long the metaverse will be around, there are many reasons to believe that it will be here to stay (people also said the same thing about the internet in the 1990s...).
For one, major investments are being pushed into building the metaverse's infrastructure. In 2021, Meta (Facebook) invested $10 billion into developing the metaverse. Other big companies like NVIDIA Omniverse and Unity Engine have followed suit.
The metaverse also offers a much wider set of use cases than what was previously available on the internet. Other sectors like hospitality and finance are already finding innovative ways to use the metaverse.
In South Korea, Seoul announced a plan to create a Virtual Mayor's Office and Seoul Campus Town.
The possibilities are endless.
What Is Conversational AI?
Conversational AI helps machines understand, process, and respond to human language. Another way to think of it is the "brain" that helps a chatbot or virtual assistant answer your questions.
Although it may seem simple on the outside, several complex technologies come together to create AI technology.
Conversational AI technology usually relies on linguistics or semantic engines that can interact and understand natural, human-like language. A semantic engine, an evolved version of the linguistics engine, uses multiple AI technologies to guarantee modern, instant and effective interactions.
Unlike a traditional chatbot, conversational AI isn’t just a set of structured flows of pre-built questions and answeres. In contrast, it uses different layers to establish open conversations.
There are several benefits that help customers. Conversational AI can give fast and efficient responses to questions from any industry. Customers are generally busy and impatient and appreciate being able to get answers to their questions quickly. It can also help educate and give direction to customers that aren't sure what to do next.
From an organizational standpoint, conversational AI can help convert website visitors into leads. It can also improve the experience of customers that purchase your product or service.
Employees that were previously used for generic and time-consuming tasks can spend their time on more important tasks as well.
However, conversational AI will have a crucial role in the next generation of the internet.
Where Does Conversational AI Come Into Play In the Metaverse?
Conversational AI has become positioned to become the bridge between users and businesses in the new digital world.
To function at its best capabilities, the metaverse will need conversational, AI-powered avatars that allow conversation to happen. Imagine a 3D version of Alexa helping you through the many functions of a new, virtual world.
With Aivo’s new video conversational AI technology, this avatar can be created through a less than 15-minute recording of a real human. After that, the avatar can have infinite interactions powered by Aivo’s conversational AI engines. No need to record thousands of videos for each interaction! And not only that, you can even use celebrities or influencers as your avatars to engage even more with your audience and cause an impact.
To get a clearer picture of how video conversational AI will work in the metaverse, let's take a look at a few use cases.
Immersive Retail and Commerce Experiences
The retail industry can take advantage of the metaverse by creating a more interactive experience for products that may have been difficult to showcase online before.
Automobile manufacturers can take you into their cars and show you what it's like to drive them on the highway. Upscale clothing brands can let you "try on" clothes and accessories.
Dynamic virtual assistants could act as personal shoppers that can perform tasks such as:
- Upselling and cross-selling other products
- Managing inventory for shoppers
- Answering questions
Brands like Nike and Gucci are already leading the way in digital-only clothing, as well.
As businesses continue to leverage the 3D world, there will be new opportunities to communicate to customers before, during, and after a purchase.
For example, imagine someone is having trouble setting up their brand new computer in their home. A metaverse assistant could provide them with step-by-step instructions. The customer can fix their issues without having to bring it back to the store. Think of it like a live-action chatbot.
Customers can receive much more detailed info without being limited by word counts on signage. This can lead to deeper customer relationships by providing a more intimate and personalized experience.
Another advantage of this is the fact that no physical contact is required, which has become an important factor due to the pandemic.
This gets even better when you think about the idea of integrating your video conversational AI technology with other platforms you already use to deliver transactional information. Your customers will be able to retrieve personalized information about accounts, purchases, deliveries, service status, and many more! For instance, when it comes to the banking industry, a customer can enter the metaverse to talk to the avatar about loans, account status or upgrades.
The new virtual world will provide opportunities for immersive experiences that many people would never be able to try in the real world. This may be due to high costs, far locations, or physical obstacles.
Imagine entering a virtual amusement park, baseball stadium, or concert hall in the metaverse. Just like in the real world, you'll need some help getting around.
That's where human-like virtual assistants come into play. They can help answer questions and give directions so that users can experience a seamless experience in the virtual world.
The more advanced the video AI, the better experience the customer can have by helping them find the route faster and more strategically. Keeping visitors informed can ultimately lead to higher revenue.
We've already seen a shift online for educational purposes due to the pandemic. Soon, students may be able to experience:
- History class in Ancient Greece
- Science class at the Great Barrier Reef
- Astronomy class on the moon
Education will pave the way for increased productivity in the classroom. It can do this by having students learn through interaction with human-like digital avatars.
Virtual Workplace Collaboration
The metaverse will continue to bridge the gap between remote and in-office work. A conversational virtual assistant can help employees and managers with a variety of tasks like:
- Taking notes
- Scheduling meetings
- Managing routine employee engagements
Digital assistants can handle repetitive and mundane tasks automatically. This will allow workers to focus on more important and creative work.
Onboarding and training of new employees can also be taken to the next level through the metaverse. Instead of video meetings on applications like Zoom, new workers can actually meet in the same room — from anywhere in the world.
New workers can ask questions face-to-face and build relationships that might otherwise be impossible in a remote setting.
Powering the Next Generation of Customer Solutions
As technology continues to move forward at breakneck speeds, businesses need to stay on top of the latest trends. The metaverse will provide brand new opportunities in every aspect of business, from marketing to sales to customer service.
If you're looking to start automating outstanding customer experiences for your business, check out our video conversational AI platform and take a product tour.