How to Make Money in the Metaverse?
What is the Metaverse?
The metaverse is still in its early stages of evolution, and there is no definitive answer to what it is. As the metaverse develops, it will continuously change, likely affecting every type of business in some way. The general vision of the metaverse is to give people highly immersive ways to interact, work, or relax in a virtual landscape. If you think that the metaverse is a game, a social network in virtual reality, or the next stage of the internet - the answer is yes. The metaverse is all of those things and much more.
Instead of sitting through a Zoom meeting, how much more fun would it be to participate in a virtual gathering where you can interact with coworkers, sketch together, and share your ideas in various ways? What if kids learned about solar systems by flying through the universe and seeing planets, galaxies, and stars, rather than looking at static pictures?
The metaverse is not a specific platform, site, or app. It is a network of virtual worlds created by different companies. More of those worlds are in the workings. There are now metaverse platforms where people can work, play, watch TV shows, work out with a personal coach, shop, trade, socialize, and relax. Eventually, people will be able to hop from one word to another, where they will spend their time and money in different ways.
Ways to Make Money in the Metaverse
Be it the real world or a virtual one - people require goods, services, and experiences. And if there is a demand for something, there are ways to make money. The entire economy could exist within these virtual worlds, and many exciting opportunities for individuals and brands are already available. Let's explore some of them.
Metaverse Real Estate
Investing in digital real estate is perhaps the most extraordinary way to make money in the metaverse. Virtual real estate has seen a rise in interest in recent years. Digital land plots in virtual worlds like Decentraland and The Sandbox are selling for millions. Individuals move their businesses into virtual worlds, and companies build shopping districts where inhabitants shop for virtual clothes from brands like Prada, Gucci, and Ralph Lauren.
The booming metaverse real estate market may look like a good opportunity for quick riches. But we are in the early days of the metaverse, and many things will change. We don't know which worlds will thrive and which will not survive. In this early stage, the only guaranteed winners are the people selling land and the dream of big profits.
Ways to Make Money with Virtual Real Estate
Now, when you know the risks, let's look at the various ways of making money through virtual real estate.
Land and Property Flipping
The most straightforward way of making a profit is by buying plots of virtual land or digital properties in the metaverse and re-selling them at a higher price.
Once you own the land, it's truly yours. You can choose to do whatever you want with it. Instead of waiting for someone who will pay a higher price for your land, you can build a commercial venue and rent it out. You can lease a conference room, virtual mall, art gallery, or another type of space. Renting out your properties is one of the ways to earn passive income in the metaverse.
Running Commercial Venues
You can run your own commercial venues. You can build a casino where people gamble for actual money, a store for your NFTs, or any other type of "brick-and-mortar" business. Almost anything that can be done in the physical world, can be recreated in the metaverse. Similarly, how the internet created new opportunities for businesses, the metaverse could take it a step further and transform how we consume products and services on an even bigger scale.
The metaverse is a new way for brands to reach their customers. The most common form of metaverse advertising is a virtual billboard. If your properties are located in high-traffic areas, you can use them for advertising. Advertising in the metaverse is more than just placing a billboard on your property. We will talk more about advertising in detail.
Real Estate Agent / Broker
As in real life, people will need help with buying and selling properties. You can make commissions from real estate sales or by giving expert advice and recommendations to real estate investors.
Designing and Building
Not everyone can design and build their properties. There is a demand for specialists who can help with this. The metaverse is the upcoming realm of architects, designers, developers, and content creators. Creating virtual assets will soon become one of the most in-demand jobs in virtual worlds.
Buy, Sell, or Create Virtual Assets (NFTs)
People like stuff, and there are plenty of opportunities for the creator economy in the metaverse. Companies and individuals make money by creating virtual reality items such as avatars, apparel, collectibles, decor, equipment, and furniture, and sell these items on various marketplaces.
If it's news to you that people pay real money for "non-real" items, know that this has been going on for a while. In-game items account for a large portion of the revenue for the multi-billion gaming market. For example, Fortnite earned $5.4 billion in 2018 by selling in-game items. Because the metaverse is an open market, anyone can sell digital assets. At least in some of the worlds.
Create Avatars, Wearables, and Other Virtual Items
An avatar is a digital representation of people in a virtual world. In other words, it's your virtual character. Wearables are apparel and accessories that people can use to customize their avatars. Anyone can create these items and sell them through various marketplaces.
Decantraland and Sandbox, two metaverse platforms, have their own marketplaces for user-generated content. Sandbox offers a 3D tool that allows content creators to design and animate virtual items. You can also sell your services as a freelancer for creating virtual items on online marketplaces like Fiverr.
Create and Monetize Games
Game developers can create and monetize their games by earning fees from players or simply selling their products to a company or another individual.
Work in the Metaverse
There will be a demand for virtual workers to keep the metaverse running. Some skills are required now, and supply and demand will drive more skilled people into the meta-economy.
Marketing and Advertising
Advertising has subsidized every new generation of media, from newspapers to radio to television, to the internet, making it cheaper or free for consumers. There is no reason to think that the metaverse would be any different.
Marketing can be one of the most significant segments of the meta-economy. Many companies are rushing to set up their virtual presence and tap into the growing audiences populating virtual worlds. You can help these companies find new interactive ways to reach their target audiences.
The metaverse offers a more immersive learning experience than video communication platforms like Zoom. Personalized and highly interactive courses and tutoring sessions will likely be more popular, and there will be more opportunities for tutors, educators, and teams who create online courses.
A considerable part of the metaverse is devoted to entertainment. Virtual parties, concerts, and sporting events may be more profitable than real-world events because they require a great deal less of everything than events in the real world. There is plenty of work for organizers, promoters, DJs, and hosts to make virtual worlds as exciting as the real world.
In 2021, forty-five million people attended a major concert held in the online game Fortnite. A mega-event like this would not have been possible in the physical world. Even if everyone could afford to travel to the event and pay for the tickets, it simply wouldn't be enough space for everyone. And it would be impossible to manage such a large crowd.
Join the Workforce of the Future
Meta (former Facebook) is allocating over 10,000 of its employees to building their digital world. Other tech giants like Google, Apple, and Amazon are working on their own augmented and virtual reality that could play a significant role in shaping the metaverse.
The metaverse requires diverse skills, and many companies will need talent from various fields to make the metaverse possible. Companies will look to expand their workforces and hire 3D artists, game designers, UI and UX designers, AR and VR designers, software engineers and developers, AI engineers, and other technical individuals.
Your skills may be highly sought after if you have an interest in these fields.
Companies That are Shaping the Future of The Metaverse
- Meta already has the top-selling virtual reality headset and is working on another VR/AR high-end device.
- Apple's mixed reality headset is to be released soon.
- Google is promising to release AR glasses and headsets in 2024.
- Microsoft is working on a consumer version of HoloLens.
Invest in the Metaverse
Some people are comfortable investing in crypto-assets, crypto-based projects, and cryptocurrencies. For others, investing directly in the metaverse's worlds is a gamble. The simplest way for most to gain exposure to the metaverse is by owning stock in large established companies that are actively involved in the future of the metaverse.
Still, investing in one sector or asset class is a dangerous game. The metaverse may be a part of a well-diversified portfolio, but not its entirety. If you don't have investing experience, going all in on the next big thing may bring the result you don't expect.
Top Metaverse Projects
The best way to understand the metaverse is to experience it yourself. Here are the most prominent metaverse-related projects you can try right now.
- Meta (Facebook)
- The Sandbox
- Star Atlas
- Gala Games
- Somnium Space
- Axie Infinity