Healthcare in the Metaverse Part Two: Ten Steps You Can Take Right Now to Prepare

May 5, 2022

by Kevin Killian, Copywriter, with Joe Doyle, EVP Digital Health

In part one of this series, we talked through what the metaverse is, what it could become, and how patients and healthcare providers can benefit from a new kind of online connection that links virtual, 3D worlds. The possibilities for better, more personal engagement are limitless.

But where’s the best place to begin? Amid the fast-paced, ever-evolving healthcare landscape, is it already too late to get involved for people who are still trying to wrap their head around the concept of the metaverse?

Not at all! In truth, we’re all doing just that. But in the meantime, here are ten steps you can take right now that will not only get you more comfortable with the next digital frontier, but also set you up for success there. You’ll find that a lot of the best practices for engagement can and should be in place at your company right now in existing digital spaces. Let’s dive in.

Meshing with the metaverse: how to prepare and participate right now 

  1. Understand what you don’t know (and what you don’t know you don’t know). Just as with any other subject, it’s impossible to determine the breadth of knowledge you’re lacking about the metaverse until you begin researching. Read as much as you can, and when you see brands offer experiences (like the Miller Lite meta bar), consider dropping into VR gear to experience it firsthand.
  2. Learn how your target audience(s) is/are using the metaverse. See where the groups you want to engage are getting involved and think about how you might be poised to help them address questions or challenges they’re having as they attempt to join virtual spaces.
  3. Consider how you’ll show up. When you’ve learned more about the metaverse and the presence of your target audience(s), ideate with your team and agency on how you can authentically engage with them in virtual settings. How can you manifest yourself in the metaverse right now, and how can you improve that presence when a connected virtual world becomes more seamless? The brands that are set up for success are the ones who experiment and build within digital spaces.
  4. Maintain—or create—active social accounts that employ solid policies. As you make the metaphorical leap, you should galvanize your audience and bring them on the journey with you. The brands that will succeed in doing that have an active, passionate, close-knit following. Many healthcare brands currently employ the tactics that will prove useful for successful engagement. Talk with patients, not at them, and give them ample opportunities to provide feedback to optimize their experience engaging with you.
  5. Design an Immersive Experience. Stand out with augmented reality (AR) or virtual reality (VR) that provides in-body details we were unable to imagine before. Your experience could be included at a customer event, in a downloadable VR app or could be hosted within a “virtual congress.”
  6. Work in the metaverse. The future is seamless interactions between reality and virtual worlds. In the present, early adopters gain maximum efficiencies during their workday using VR productivity apps. Encourage those in your company to show the way for others.
  7. Prepare your sales force. Virtual training experiences are an easy way for your team to get ready for the metaverse. Simulated detailing and rep support should be similar as virtual worlds and locations open up.
  8. Look for potential partners. 3D content creation and digital advertising will be hugely important. Consider how you can benefit from—and contribute to—a partnership that will set you up for success in the metaverse.
  9. Plan for incentives. The virtual space should quickly become crowded. How will you carve out your own area, and how will you motivate people to come in and learn more? Digital artifacts like NFTs could prove to be a valuable incentive for engagement.
  10. Combine technologies for greater good. Imagine an event with buzzworthy exposure that leverages sensory-based technologies to create a personal currency used for NFTs. The combination of in-person users and VR engagements from afar are ideal to promote inclusivity and accessibility. 

Much of this might sound like its eons away, but it’s not. Remember that there was a time not too long ago when shopping on the internet sounded improbable, too. Brands that don’t begin at least thinking about the metaverse right now risk being left behind. At worst, it will persist in its current form, and it will provide new and exciting opportunities for engagement. At best, it will alter the way we interact, work, consume, and receive care.

The metaverse is what we make it. Let’s make it change the world.