frank&bear

Thinking in Threes…

The Metaverse is a place we can’t avoid this year, and while it might sound daunting and new, it’s really not as new as you’d think. The virtual world has been around for a hell of a long time, think Animal Crossing, YoVille, heck even Club Penguin, but this time it’s got investment from the big guns and you can do everything you do in your normal day-to-day life, in this parallel universe. 

NFTs

Just don’t mix up the term Metaverse with NFTs as they’re ‘same, same but different’. If you haven’t heard of the acronym NFT, then you better keep reading. The acronym itself stands for ‘Non Fungible Token’, which is essentially anything digital that can be traded, think sports cards from when you’re a kid, but a digitised version. Nike saw an opportunity to create virtual versions of their iconic trainers, so they acquired a design studio that can create thousands of their trainers digitally for consumers to purchase and trade online, which makes you wonder will we even own a wardrobe in 20yrs time? Rugby League World Cup also recently entered the NFT sphere by collaborating with blockchain company NuArca to branch into the digital collectables marketplace with the aim to create a series of digital collectibles that will engage fans and give them the chance to truly immerse themselves in the Rugby world, from their very own home. Every day another brand joins the NFT train, and it won’t be long until we’ll be talking about NFTs as often as we talk about selfies. It’s an area that the smaller brands are a little bit scared of because it sounds so foreign, expensive and unachievable, but the sooner you get on board, the less chance you have of being left behind in the marketplace.

SNAPCHAT

Even Fashion, as an industry, is undergoing an insane amount of changes. It’s been chastised massively during the pandemic as people became more and more aware of the damage it’s causing to the environment, but you have to hand it to the industry for trying to reinvent itself; particularly in the retail space. New stores are opening up across the world that are fully virtual, even changing rooms are soon going to be something that only grandparents talk about. Snapchat in the US are currently testing AR shopping lenses that allows consumers to try on a product by simply opening up their camera. MAC, as one of the trial brands, saw 1.3 million try-ons at a cost of 0.31c per product and reported a 17x higher lift in purchases. This comes only a few months after the platform launched their incredibly successful scan feature that allowed the user to scan a person’s outfit, their fridge and even a room of furniture, to find out where to get these. Nobody can deny that they’ve wanted to find out where that person in the queue got their coat or where their friend bought that delicious sauce in the cupboard. Yes, we could just ask them, but where’s the fun in that? It’ll also result in brands obtaining even more details about what we like, but that’s a conversation for a whole other day. 

PODCASTS

“What podcasts are you listening to lately?” Seems to be the question that starts off every conversation lately, other than the weather of course. According to Chartable, we’re all just a bunch of jokers and Joe Goldbergs in Ireland. If a podcast isn’t led by a comedian or delves into a true crime story, as a country, we won’t tune in. My Therapist Ghosted Me, The Witness & The Tommy, Hector & Laurita Podcast are just some of the most listened to podcasts from 2021. Which really makes you think that if a Spotify ad or sponsorship needs to break through the noise, it can’t be too serious…and if it is, it needs to be killer, pun intended.