For this blog I've picked up on a couple of trending stories.
My focus is to stimulate the industry to continue to recognise that you are in the epicentre of an opportunity to reimagine the future of retailing as we continue into the 21st Century.
Today there are very few places left for brands who want our attention to go to if this pandemic continues to decimate revenues and the subsequent brand marketing budgets that companies have gotten used to are at best a fraction of pre-Covid spending, or at worse non-existent.
'Social Media' can be a life saver for brands if they understand that social media is about being social first, and selling second.
But what about a market that has opened up even more as a result of this global crisis - I'm talking about that of online gaming?
Throughout the past year of global coronavirus lockdowns, our digital selves are likely to have seen far more public exposure than our physical selves, whether via Zoom appearances, social media profiles, or video game avatars.
According to trend forecasting agency WGSN, time spent gaming increased 29 percent during the pandemic.
The global video game market is forecast to be worth $159 billion in 2020, surpassing the global box office and recorded music industry revenues of $42.2 billion and $20.2 billion, respectively. source 'Financial Express'
The ability to play a video game online on any new-age computing device offers better immersive experience to users.
Online gaming opens up possibilities to engage with real gamers worldwide, attend in-game events, complete rewarding tasks, and post accomplishments on social media.
The pandemic has altered consumer behaviour, but e-gaming is not complaining.
During March−April 2020, global spending on games rose by 17% to $10.5 billion.
The pandemic is contributing to the normalisation and adoption of e-gaming. For instance, a leading Indian gaming company has witnessed a 200% increase in its user base during the lockdown, with about 1,00,000 new users joining the platform every day.
In-game avatars have become a key part of the players’ identities who themselves are key influencers in their own right.
And today a growing number of fashion brands have been tapping into the metaverse to offer virtual goods that can represent social capital and enable self-expression, creating digital versions of their real-world collections.
These cosmetic add-ons, or “skins,” now earn the gaming industry around $40 billion a year.
What we are witnessing is another emerging global trend of collaboration/partnerships across sectors such as e-gaming, music, television, over-the-top media, e-commerce, and telecom operators, making it one-stop destination for consumers.
Corporates are also using gamification for training, teambuilding, and customer loyalty. Edutainment-based games are witnessing high growth and adoption.
So, do you see this as another opportunity to reimagine the future for brands and retailers alike, or just a Gen Z and Millennial fad?
Until virtual make-up evolves, the most successful beauty x gaming collaborations appear to be physical ones that can satisfy the fans of popular titles such as Animal Crossing’s recent collection with American cosmetics brand Colourpop. MAC has also partnered with leading Tencent-owned game Honor of Kings in China — the first offering, a collection of lipsticks, in 2019 racked up 14,000 pre-orders and quickly sold out, as did a second drop in 2020 featuring a wider variety of products.