I’m hopeful 2022 will be the year we regain a sense of normalcy. We know that many Canadian businesses were forced to pivot online at the outset of the pandemic. But others were born out of the pandemic as digital-first businesses – and they’ve given a generation of young entrepreneurs the opportunity to transform their passions into livelihoods.
As a company, what we’re most excited about in 2022 and beyond are the opportunities the metaverse will open up for businesses big and small. The metaverse will be an immersive experience and is the next evolution of the internet. Just as the shift from desktop to mobile created new ways for businesses to reach people and provide them with personalized experiences, so will the metaverse.
While many of the technologies we’re envisioning will take 5 to 10 years to be fully realized, businesses can start to prepare for this future now. It’s important to note that many of the skills businesses are using today to grow will apply in the metaverse. Every business has now operated in a hybrid world of offline and online and that will still apply. The metaverse isn’t about replacing in-person experiences; it’s about making what we do online better and more meaningful.
In the near term, the main way people will experience the metaverse is through 2D apps, which will eventually evolve into more immersive, 3D experiences. First and foremost, businesses should continue to innovate, experiment, and grow their audience through 2D apps because the connections that they’re building on these platforms now are the building blocks for the experiences they will create in the metaverse. Second, with the rise of digital commerce, businesses can start to imagine ways for people to experience their products and brand as they would in a bricks-and-mortar shop. Lastly, with AR/VR becoming more mainstream, businesses can experiment with AR filters and ads, or virtual try-on options to help customers get a sense of the products from their homes. As we start off the new year, I look forward to seeing what incredible contributions Canadian businesses make to building the metaverse.
VP & Country Director, Meta in Canada
Garrick Tiplady is a global business leader with twenty years of experience managing and advising businesses at innovative, mission-driven companies. As Vice President and Country Director at Meta in Canada, Garrick ensures that Meta is a positive contributor to Canada’s economic, social and cultural fabric. He leads the Canadian team with a long-term vision and a strong sense of purpose in all areas of the business – whether impacting the innovation agenda in Canada, working across industries with businesses both big and small, or building community at a global scale. Garrick is a strong advocate for the power of technology to enable small businesses and has been deeply involved with Meta’s efforts to support small businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic.