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What the Heck is the “Metaverse” and Why Should my Business Care?

Posted on June 23, 2022

by Rick McKenna


As I write this article, I’m tapping away on my computer aboard my boat on the Boston Harbor.  The sun is warm.  The breeze smells fresh and salty. And the boat is rocking gently in her slip.  And right beside me in the salon, I’m chatting with a metaverse expert over tea. Accept she’s in England. And I may, or may not be, in my home office. See what I did there?

The best definition for the Metaverse I’ve found was written by Adrian Ma, Assistant Professor, Journalism, Toronto Metropolitan University. “The metaverse is an integrated network of 3D virtual worlds. These worlds are accessed through a virtual reality headset — users navigate the metaverse using their eye movements, feedback controllers or voice commands. The headset immerses the user, stimulating what is known as presence, which is created by generating the physical sensation of being there.

Pretty cool, but what does that actually mean? Here’s a basic example. Imagine a group of friends, living far and wide, who want to get together for a glass of wine. They will each put on their headsets, pour themselves a glass of wine, and voila, the “experience” convinces your brain that you are all together chatting and laughing and enjoying the new Zinfandel. And instead of using the word experience, those in the know call it presence.

Now expand this to other experiences that rely on collaboration. An architectural team, also far and wide, can in real time collaborate on a whiteboard, planning the new rec center as if they’re all in the same room.  A band can host a virtual concert experience for thousands as if they were all physically together.  Your annual physical with your physician takes place with headsets. New sensors check your heart rate, blood pressure and O2 levels while the doctor asks all the uncomfortable questions like how much wine do you drink – – in the metaverse! You are only limited by your imagination because the computing power, connectivity and graphics technology are incredibly sophisticated and improving at breakneck speed.

Does your business need to be part of the trend? Probably if being an early adopter matters.   The metaverse is far from being a done and proven reality. It will continue to change, evolve and expand. But earlier is better – – just ask early investors in Google, Amazon, Meta, and Tesla. Each changed the world as we know it.

Here are 5 ways for your business to dip its toe into the metaverse:

  1. Get a headset or two in your office(s) and have different teams, departments or individuals play around with them. Through real life experience, they’ll understand the concept better and faster.
  2. Assign someone to be the advocate within your organization and have them explore, educate, and coach your executive team. An advocate will make it happen.
  3.  Look at ways where team collaboration within your organization can be improved. For example, how does the sales team read eyes and body language during a Teams call? These areas of opportunity are most readily improved by metaverse engagement.
  4. Try it out with a small internal project. For example, your marketing department can efficiently share and review marketing plans and creative concepts internally. By involving your external advertising agency in the discussion, the concept of virtual collaboration is accelerated.
  5. Bring in an external team to assess the best opportunities for you to begin. Should you focus on business collaboration? What about marketing, branding, or selling in the metaverse? Can parts of your business be gamified? How can operations, manufacturing and finance get on the same page? There is no need at this juncture to go “all in” but testing the waters makes a lot of sense. And maybe hold off on buying Meta’s new line of virtual clothing for your Avatar!

By the way, I’m really on my boat, and I’m connected with my friend in the UK via a headset. If you have any questions about marketing and branding, in the metaverse or beyond, please drop me a line, we can meet in person or with headsets on.


Rick McKenna runs the Boston office of Cronin, a national independent advertising and marketing agency. As a LinkedIn influencer, he regularly posts about branding, advertising, and global innovation. He can be reached via email at and he’s happy to meet aboard Legacy – – in person.