Tech

In the Metaverse, Live Concerts Hold More Appeal Than Live Sports and Shopping

45% of all adults would listen to live music in a virtual world, as would 56% of Gen Z and 61% of millennials

(Getty Images / Morning Consult artwork by Monique Zarbaf)

INTO THE METAVERSE: WHAT INTERESTS AND WORRIES CONSUMERS ABOUT THE NEW VR VENTURE

A new special report from Morning Consult explores the public’s interest in and concerns around the metaverse, as Meta Platforms Inc. and others ramp up work on the virtual reality platform. The data is drawn from a survey of 4,420 U.S. adults. Other stories in the series: Companies Are Set to Spend Billions on the Metaverse in the Next Decade. These Are the Groups They Should Target | Nothing Concerns the Public More About the Metaverse Than the Misuse of Their Personal Data | All metaverse coverage

As companies look to ramp up their entertainment offerings in the metaverse, adults appear most enthused about virtually attending live concerts, ahead of going to live sporting events and shopping in the virtual reality world, according to a Morning Consult survey.

What the numbers say

  • Almost half of the public (45%) said it was interested in the idea of seeing live music in the metaverse, while 38% of adults said they would likely attend a live sporting event.
  • About 2 in 5 adults said they would like to create an avatar to represent them in the metaverse, and 31% said they would buy virtual items for it. Some of the biggest fashion brands give users the ability to buy virtual clothing and other items in the metaverse.
  • The younger generations were more likely to be interested in metaverse-based activities.  Among millennials, 61% said they would be interested in attending a live concert in the metaverse, while an equal share said the same for having a digital avatar represent them. Another 56% said they would be interested in attending a live sporting event in the metaverse.
  • Meanwhile, 64% of Gen Z adults said they were interested in having a digital avatar and 56% said they would be interested in attending a music event in the metaverse. They were noticeably less interested in attending a metaverse-based sporting event. (Notably, previous Morning Consult research has shown that Gen Zers are less likely to identify as sports fans compared to other generations).
  • Roughly half of Black adults said they were interested in attending a live sporting event (51%) or live music (54%), while comparable shares expressed interest in creating a digital avatar (56%). Hispanics were similarly interested in attending a live music event in the metaverse (55%) and creating a digital avatar (56%). Both groups outpaced white people in their interest in these activities.

Why it matters 

In an open letter announcing Meta Platforms Inc.’s rebrand and focus on the metaverse, Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg said the ability to experience all manner of events in the metaverse will “open up more opportunity no matter where you live.” Meta did not respond to requests for further comment.

There is already evidence that companies are moving in the direction of letting fans experience live events in the metaverse. Sony Group Corp. announced a deal with Manchester City Football Club in the United Kingdom to become its “official virtual fan engagement partner,” an effort the company said will include the creation of a “global online fan community” and a virtual rendering of the club’s Etihad Stadium.

Those efforts have already prompted debate over whether those experiencing sports in the metaverse are “real fans.” 

Some artists have already shown a way forward for live music events in the metaverse. Both Travis Scott and Ariana Grande have performed in Epic Games Inc.’s Fortnite video game, although Meta tried something similar late last year and saw little uptake

 

The March 3-5, 2022, survey was conducted among a representative sample of 4,420 adults, with an unweighted margin of error of plus or minus 1 percentage point.