Buying clothes, going to the stadium or meeting friends – in just a few years, our leisure time could take place in the metaverse. Companies are already opening stores in the new virtual worlds to reach their customers on even more channels. With the help of artificial intelligence, they could soon be recommending products and services that are tailored to their needs or showing them content that matches their preferences. Banks too, recognise the metaverse as an opportunity: for them, it is about accompanying their customers in the new digital universe.
Deutsche Bank, for example will soon open a new 3D lounge in Decentraland, one of the leading metaverse platforms. Visitors – or rather their avatars – will be able to explore the lounge and, to begin with, view ten predictions published by Ulrich Stephan, Deutsche Bank’s Chief investment officer for private and corporate clients. Towards the end of this year, there will also be a virtual live event in the lounge, where Ulrich Stephan will talk about what has become of his predictions and what ten theses he has for the year 2024.
Visitors will also be able to dress an avatar in the lounge in various Deutsche Bank clothes and accessories by exchanging a Deutsche Bank token for caps, hoodies and shoes. “In a first step, we want to learn what people are interested in in virtual worlds and what skills we need to offer them,” says Ufuk Avci, who is managing the project for Deutsche Bank.
Tim Alexander, who heads Global Brand & Marketing at Deutsche Bank and initiated the project, highlights another aspect: “The metaverse is where our target group of tomorrow is. We want to find out how we need to present ourselves as a brand here in order to be relevant to these people in the virtual world. Because in the future, more and more clients might visit us in virtual worlds.”
This is one of the reasons why Deutsche Bank last year opened its first 3D lounge in Decentraland, where, visitors can watch videos and read articles. The old lounge will be merged with the new one, with the overall aim of opening up new ways of interacting with clients. In the distant future, the bank could also use the metaverse as a space to provide clients with product advice.
Sabih Behzad, Deutsche Bank’s Head of Digital Assets and Currencies Transformation, describes meetings in the metaverse as a whole new experience. “Ultimately, in the future, we could engage with our clients in a much more intense way in the metaverse than through video platforms like Teams or Zoom”, Behzad says. “Instead of just seeing and hearing each other, we could, for example, walk side by side across a virtual company site and look at and even touch new machines or production equipment.”