The concept of the metaverse has been around for thirty years, first surfacing in the science fiction novel, Snow Crash. Yet, it has only gained momentum recently as a key component of digital transformation, reshaping how we think about the internet, work, shop, and provide customer support.
With a projected market value of $1.525 billion by 2030, the metaverse is seen as a promising market for gaming, social media, and entertainment brands. Nevertheless, its potential to generate value in customer service and brand engagement cannot be underestimated.
In the next decade, the metaverse is expected to completely transform the customer experience, just like e-commerce changed retail in the 90s.
In the metaverse, CX agencies and call centers have a great opportunity to turn every interaction into a valuable experience, but preparation and staying ahead of the curve are crucial to fully reaping the benefits.
Let’s take a futuristic journey into the CX in metaverse and explore all the hows and whys of creating a next-generation customer engagement with this immersive technology.
What Does the Metaverse Mean for CX?
Let’s start by defining the metaverse, because there are a lot of different versions of it floating around. According to Spiceworks, the metaverse is a spatial computing platform built on blockchain technology to act as an alternative to or replica of the real world.
The point here is that the metaverse offers its users an interaction via virtual reality (VR) or augmented reality (AR) technologies in key aspects of civilization, such as social interactions, currency, trade, economy, and property ownership.
This is significant for key players in the customer experience industry to understand, as it demonstrates that metaverse platforms are not limited to just entertainment. Rather, they are virtual environments that can present alternative channels for call centers and CX agencies to expand their digital presence and offer cutting-edge CX solutions.
The metaverse allows the potential for AI-powered customer support representatives to provide personalized and interactive customer experiences in a metadata repository and support operations of local customer service teams.
So in today's business landscape, where enhancing customer experience is essential to the success of any brand or company, the benefits of the metaverse are clear. However, transitioning into this virtual world is not that easy.
Therefore, before exploring advantages the metaverse can offer to call center services or agencies, let's take a closer look at key considerations in the transition process.
Creating Building Blocks for Transforming CX in Metaverse
Since the COVID-19 pandemic accelerated the shift towards a "digital first" approach, brands and companies now prioritize digital channels and technologies in delivering products, services, and experiences to customers.
However, as the digital world becomes increasingly mainstream, it's essential to prioritize the overall customer experience, regardless of whether it's delivered through digital or alternative channels.
So the goal for CX agencies and call centers should be to create omnichannel, memorable, and meaningful experiences that meet customers' needs, exceed expectations, build brand trust, and foster long-lasting customer relationships.
Undoubtedly, achieving this will be possible through leveraging metaverse platforms. Here are all the details to watch for while creating presence and customer engagement in the metaverse.
First, Evaluate Potential in the Market
Entering the metaverse is like entering a new market. Therefore, before making any investments or preparations, it is crucial to understand the customers within it.
Currently, there are over 400 million active users in the metaverse, with 60% of them being Gen Zers, followed by millennials. These two generations are more technologically savvy, so transforming customer journeys into metaverse experiences is likely to be less intimidating for them.
Yet each generation has distinct characteristics that impact their perceptions. For instance, while Gen Zers expect both live and automated customer support, millennials prioritize fast and accessible customer service.
Thus, the first step should be exploring the needs, requests, and perceptions of metaverse users before starting to operate.
Focus on Creating Multichannel Experiences for a Smoother Transition
The metaverse is groundbreaking technology that can transform our perception and interaction with reality. Yet attempting to implement it all at once can result in inconveniencies for both customers and team members.
So organizations seeking to improve customer experience with the metaverse should adopt a gradual approach, starting with small integrations into their existing operations.
AI-powered technologies, such as chatbots, speech recognition, sentiment analysis, and virtual personal assistants, can be utilized in digital channels before being incorporated into metaverse platforms.
To ensure a seamless transition experience for customers, CX professionals should take a holistic approach to both digital and virtual operations to ensure they complement each other.
This requires considering that a customer's journey may begin online and continue in the metaverse, and building strategies accordingly.
Be Aware of Potential Challenges
The metaverse offers opportunities for enhanced customer experience but might also present several challenges for CX professionals and agencies.
The technical complexity of the metaverse requires significant investment in hardware, software, infrastructure, and a steep learning curve for CX teams to understand how to support customers.
Another challenge is the issue of data privacy and security. The metaverse involves storing and sharing personal data and sensitive information, which raises serious concerns about data privacy and security.
Additionally, teams may need to acquire new skills, such as virtual interaction and navigation, to effectively support customers in this new environment.
To overcome these challenges, organizations can invest in ongoing training and development to acquire the necessary skills and technical knowledge, implement robust data privacy and security measures, and collaborate with experts in the field.
What Benefits Does the Metaverse Generate for the Future of Customer Experience?
As previously mentioned, the implementation of metaverse can bring numerous benefits to call centers and CX agencies.
First and foremost, it enables them to create and maintain successful omnichannel CX strategies, providing customers with a unique and positive experience across all touchpoints.
Let's delve deeper into the further advantages that the metaverse can offer.
Enables Instant, Contextual Support
The metaverse offers huge opportunities in terms of storing and accessing real-time data about the interactions between customers and the company.
This information can include previous customer support requests, purchase history, product usage data, and other relevant details.
By having this information readily available, both local and virtual customer service representatives can quickly address customer concerns, provide accurate and relevant answers, and resolve issues in a timely manner.
This way, the metaverse can accelerate the average response time, increase customer satisfaction, reduce average handling times, and cut down on the number of repeat calls. These are crucial performance indicators that reflect the efficiency of their operations.
Allows Brands and Agents to Meet Customers Where They Are
According to research by Statista, 74% of adults in the US said that they will join or are considering joining the metaverse.
This data shows that in the near future, the metaverse will be one of the key platforms where the majority of customers interact with brands through virtual storefronts, events, product launches, and shopping experiences.
So in addition to brands or companies, the metaverse will be the ultimate space for CX agencies and call center representatives to meet and interact with customers in real time and provide highly immersive experiences and personalized customer support.
Creates Opportunities to Showcase Social Consciousness
Currently, Gen Zers and millennials are among the largest consumer groups in the world. These generations are the most vocal and proactive when it comes to issues such as climate change and sustainability.
In fact, 41% of Gen Z customers consider climate change to be the most important issue facing the world today and make their purchasing decisions accordingly. As a result, they expect brands and organizations to reflect their concern for these issues.
As an alternative that reduces carbon footprint, empowers energy-efficient data centers, and enables CX agencies and call centers to create sustainable environments, the metaverse offers enormous opportunities for both sustainability and brand identity.
To showcase and promote awareness, these agencies can run virtual campaigns, offer virtual CX solutions and services, and implement virtual initiatives demonstrating their commitment to sustainability.
Are You Ready to Keep Up With the Metaverse and Future of CX?
It is clear that the metaverse is out to revolutionize customer experience and generate value for CX professionals and call center representatives. Still, it is essential to keep in mind that this immersive technology is still in its infancy.
Therefore, it is time for agencies and call centers to gear up for the future by upgrading their digital channels with cutting-edge customer experience technology to ensure they are ready to tackle the challenges of the metaverse and future of CX.
At Mplus, we believe that keeping up with the future requires a culture of continuous development. Therefore, we offer adaptable, innovative solutions and services to digitalize the entire customer journey holistically and provide value to our partners with our best-of-breed digital consultancy expertise.
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