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All You Need to Know About Meta
On October 28, 2021, CEO Mark Zuckerberg laid out his vision of the metaverse. It’s a space that’s slated to follow the advent of mobile internet, but it’s destined to allow users to explore digital spheres in a way never realized before. In keeping with his fantastic vision, Zuckerberg announced their major rebranding effort. Facebook will now be known as Meta. It’s a bold move and probably not completely unprecedented. But, it’s still a huge change.
In his Founder Letter, Zuckerberg says, “We are at the beginning of the next chapter for the internet, and it’s the next chapter for our company too.” He envisions a brave new world with Meta at the forefront of all those immersive possibilities. As Zuckerberg explains, “The next platform will be even more immersive — an embodied internet where you’re in the experience, not just looking at it. We call this the metaverse, and it will touch every product we build.”
What Does the Meta Name Change Mean for Facebook?
Renaming itself to Meta is a major rebranding initiative for Facebook, the size and scale of which is difficult to articulate. We could compare it to Google's partial rebranding initiative in 2015, but that just involved moving itself into a flagship company, Alphabet. While nobody is begrudging the name change, particularly with all the bad press Facebook has encountered in recent years, the real question that journalists, techies, business professionals, and marketers alike all seem to be asking is: “Isn’t that confusing?”
Instead of lending an air of simplicity and brand clarity to Facebook, the international naming implications link to “died” in Hebrew and “goal” in Spanish. For traders, the stock is now “MVRS” starting December 1. Everyone is talking about Facebook’s reinvention, but far from lending more credibility to their change, the viral messages appear to further question the reasoning behind the “Meta” name and the company's refocus.
What Does the Meta Name Change Mean for Digital Marketing?
Facebook’s new corporate name and presence represent the metaverse, with seamless integration of AR (Augmented Reality) and VR (Virtual Reality) into a new online world. In his launch video, Zuckerberg said, “We live for what we build. As we make mistakes, we keep learning, building, and moving forward.” From a marketing perspective, they could have worded that a bit differently. But, the intent is obvious: they intend to build something.
We're just not sure what that will look like yet. Then, too, what does this newly evolved Meta world mean for digital marketing? Zuckerberg’s vision includes the capability of sending a hologram to a virtual concert space. It means that co-workers could join a virtual meeting from anywhere in the world. All of these scenarios are available in some form or another, so the challenge here is not whether it can be done, but how and if the new Meta will put their own branded spin on the idea. Will they wow their millions of users or fall flat?
The one thing that’s certain is that virtually anything is possible in the online world. Perhaps this really will turn into a whole new way to envision marketing and communication, paired as it will be with AR and VR capabilities. Maybe it will feel like being there in the room, connecting and sharing in a virtual collaboration. With more than 58 million Americans currently using Facebook, fans and critics are more than a little curious about how the brand name change and the new clarity of direction will affect Meta’s path forward.
Just to be clear, the actual name of the Facebook app and service are not changing. Just the corporate name is destined to change. As Zuckerberg said, “Our mission remains the same, still about bringing people together. Our apps and their brands, they're not changing either.” But, even as he says that it’s clear from his statements that the Oculus headset and service are changing to Meta Quest. So, all we can say for certain is, we’ll see what happens next.
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