Web3 Is Already Here, What Does It Mean For Brands?
A new era of the Internet is here, namely Web3. Recently, there has been a great deal of discussion around it, but what does it all indeed imply? Being aware of what's coming and what's currently happening is especially important for companies.
What is Web3? What does it imply for brands? Which firms are adopting Web3? We'll answer these questions and more in this article.
What is Web3?
According to believers, Web3 represents the next phase of the Internet and organizing society. Web 1.0 referred to the early days of the Internet in the 1990s when it was viewed as a means of democratizing access to knowledge, yet it was chaotic and overwhelming.
Then, in the mid-2000s came Web 2.0. Google, Amazon, Facebook, and Twitter arose to bring innovation and order to the Internet by making it simple to interact and transact online. These corporations accumulated far too much power over time.
Web3 is about reclaiming some of the power. As a result, the technology is an iteration of the Internet in which new social networks, search engines, and markets emerge with no corporate masters.
According to the Ethereum Foundation, Web3 refers to decentralized programs that operate on Blockchain technology. These are applications that allow anyone to join without selling their personal information.
That is also why Web3 may be a panacea for antitrust issues and monopolistic corporate practices. This next-generation web technology would inevitably deprive major companies of influence since they would no longer be the only powerful platforms to utilize.
Some technologists anticipate that Web3 will incubate a metaverse built on Blockchain technology and open standards and managed by a global network of computers rather than a few large corporations.
Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) would promote virtual reality trade, and conventional gatekeepers would no longer decide what can and cannot enter the metaverse.
In a letter describing how the metaverse will not "be established by one firm," Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg seems to encourage similar values, stating that the innovation will produce "a substantially bigger creative economy than the one confined by today's platforms and their regulations."
What does Web3 mean for businesses?
For businesses, this means that all of the wealth created can potentially be shared with more individuals than simply the owners, investors, and employees.
But what does it mean for brands and digital marketing? While this may sound alarming to marketers, the technology may offer a real chance to refocus on why and how brands promote consumers. Brands who are already leveraging web3 in their marketing material are saying it is a “user-centered quest to empower—and just as often, enrich—its users, making them owners and investors as much as customers.”
Marketing as we know it currently collects data rather than providing value to individuals. As a result, we now witness a global macro-movement toward preserving consumer privacy.
The migration to Web3 would allow marketing efforts to match brands to consumers better and remove centralized data collecting requirements. Web3 gives consumers authority over their data, allowing advertisers to regain confidence and reconnect with people lost during the data-collection explosion.
Companies are adopting Web3 now
Web3 has remained a grand theoretical innovation for engineers and cryptographers for years. But in recent months, it has even compelled large technology corporations to form Web3 departments.
Twitter, for example, is looking into methods to incorporate Web3 concepts into the social network, such as one day being able to log in and tweet from an account connected with a cryptocurrency rather than a Twitter account.
In October, GameStop was looking for three product marketing directors for its NFT platform, three NFT software engineers, and two Web3 gaming heads.
While Reddit may soon transform users' karma points into Ethereum-based tokens, bringing 500 million additional crypto users on board.
And Silicon Valley venture capital company Andreessen Horowitz, aiming to bring crypto into the mainstream, is exerting a significant force on Capitol Hill to accept Web3.
The thought of the entire Internet being reinvented may sound like some distant digital paradise right now, just as the notion of the metaverse. However, Web3 is already creating innovation – and a lot of new money, notably from crypto investors.
There is no question that we are in the early stages of the new Internet and digital economy era. It will impact companies on almost every level – including marketing – and the sooner brand stakeholders begin experimenting and communicating with their consumers in these new ways, the better.