5 min read

How Retailers Can Start Using the Meta Quest Today

How much convincing will it take to start seriously investing in metaverse plans? This is the question every company must ask themselves. It’s the delta between the early movers and the laggards of the metaverse. We’re all aware of the potential metaverse opportunity, but most aren’t confident that it’s worthwhile at the moment.

With the recent launch of the Meta Quest Pro headset, which was geared toward business use cases, Meta is boldly asking for corporate adoption of this virtual platform.

But how should retailers start using the Meta Quest platform today?

Internal Investment

At the bare minimum, now is the time to begin creating internal familiarity with the metaverse. Start from the ground up and spend time understanding how Meta’s platform works, what apps are trending, what can and cannot be built, and how people use it. This is the knowledge that very few companies are seeking, but it’s worth its weight in gold.

Buy a few headsets for your office or subsidize the cost of your team buying their own headsets. Transition a couple of weekly meetings into a metaverse workspace app. Organize group outings in one of the many social metaverse apps to experiment with building company culture in VR.

Right now, even Zuckerberg is having trouble getting his own employees at Meta to use their headsets and Horizon Worlds app. Meta’s VP of Metaverse, Vishal Shah, told The Verge that employees still weren’t using it enough, and he’s holding managers accountable to get their teams in there.

If Meta itself is failing at getting bodies in the metaverse, then this is a real chance to gain an advantage as an organization. Make it your team’s mission to experience all (or most of) the metaverse apps I mention in Everydays 28: 70 Ways to Experience the Metaverse. This is the time investment that will pay huge dividends.

External Strategy

The end goal is obviously to drive bottom-line growth in the metaverse. That’s what every organization is after. While there is a handful of Metaverse App Stores you can begin building experiences for, we’re seeing early indications that the Oculus Quest Store may be the place to focus on:

  • 1 in 3 apps in the Quest Store is making $1M+ in gross revenue
  • 33 apps are making $10M+ in gross revenue, up from 22 apps in February 2022
  • Walking Dead: Saints & Sinners generated $50M+ revenue on Quest alone

If the Oculus Quest Store’s growth turns out to be anything like the growth of the Apple App Store ($260B in revenue since 2008), then now is the time to consider what services or experiences your company can bring to the metaverse.

Ironically, their paths are quite similar. Most of the early App Store winners were games, just as most of the leading apps on the Oculus Quest Store today are games. But as the App Store evolved beyond games, so will the Oculus Quest Store.

The low-hanging fruit for an organization’s external metaverse strategy would be to begin hosting events on the Meta Quest platform. If you go to the Events tab in the Oculus app, then you’ll see that there isn’t much competition here at all. On any given day, there are less than a dozen events taking place. And many of them are pre-recorded.

For organizations that are serious and want to go beyond metaverse events, then it’s important you ask the right questions internally.

Asking the Right Questions

Designing a thoughtful and effective metaverse strategy is challenging because there’s no playbook yet. Nobody has dominated the metaverse and shown how to delight their customers there. But that doesn’t mean you cannot be the first. And it starts by asking the right questions that will get your team thinking critically.

What new products and services can we build to bring the metaverse experience to life?

1-800-Flowers has an incredible eCommerce footprint for physical arrangements, but what does a metaverse product look like for them? Why not create a means for people to gift virtual flower arrangements? Or build a campaign around the concept of “giving people their flowers while they can still smell them” and highlight all of the metaverse builders and pioneers out there.

What is the path to monetizing these new experiences and ensuring consumer adoption?

LVMH has likely seen the explosion of the digital fashion and metaverse wearables market. Meta recently announced the launch of their Avatar store, where you can outfit your avatar with goods. It’s a prime opportunity to get ahead of selling virtual goods on the Meta Quest platform.

How important is ROI in the short term?

Walmart unveiled Walmart Land in Roblox last month. Vans World drove over 80 million visits to their Roblox experience. What did Walmart learn from theirs? Were they able to drive purchases to their stores or create a market for their digital Roblox goods? At this point in time, brands must toil between making money and reaching eyeballs in the metaverse. Defining what success looks like in the short term and how that plays into the long-term vision is critical.

How can we make our content relevant to our target audiences in the metaverse?

Hallmark Cards has created great audience loyalty with its Hallmark Channel. How can they bring their made-for-TV movies into the metaverse? There are so many metaverse lounges and bigscreen apps for consuming content in VR, but not a lot of it is created with VR in mind.

How can we include new or existing ad inventory in the metaverse and optimize between mediums?

The Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade is a historic and iconic moment that has taken place for nearly 100 years. It’s also a major advertising event for brands and media properties. The assets created for this parade could live on and be experienced forever in the metaverse. And this simultaneously could be a way for Macy’s to create partnerships with metaverse-known brands like Fortnite, Razer, or 100 Thieves.

Are our customers the type that will use the metaverse?

Foot Locker has great market penetration in sneaker culture, but this culture is also slowly adopting digital wearables. With as many as 57 million VR users in the US, is there a significant crossover in customers that Foot Locker may want to stay ahead of?

What opportunities exist to create converged digital and physical experiences?

The Home Depot is Where Doers Get More Done. Interestingly, two of the most popular metaverse apps are open-world building games (Minecraft and Roblox), which revolve around constructing estates, games, and other environments. The Home Depot should be exploring construction games in VR to keep their brand top-of-mind when people want to build/repair things in the metaverse (and the real world).

Does it make sense to have a virtual storefront in the metaverse?

Subway has over 21,000 franchise locations worldwide. But nobody has created the first metaverse franchises. Although you can’t nourish someone in the metaverse in the traditional sense, there will be opportunities to create storefronts that extend the brand experience. Maybe it’s a sandwich-building game or training platform to see what it would be like to work at a Subway. Maybe it’s a tycoon type of game where you aim to build the biggest franchise footprint.

How can we leverage the metaverse to build loyalty with current customers or acquire new customers?

UPS collaborated with ComplexLand 3.0 to be their official shipping partner of all goods purchased through their virtual shopping experience. They also showed up with $1M of grant money for diverse small businesses. UPS intelligently inserted their name in this commerce-focused metaverse experience, reminding people that they are the premiere shipping provider online and offline.