2022 Web3 Automotive Study: Generational Gap in Understanding and Value of Web3 and Metaverse Use Cases

July 01, 2022

Web3

Our latest automotive study on Web3, metaverse, and blockchain shows that digital and virtual applications have the potential to revolutionize the market. However, survey results indicate a clear generational gap. What can car manufacturers and retailers take away from the findings? Experts Antoine Weill and Patrick Valentin share their recommendations on how to develop a targeted approach to align offering and value propositions to specific segments.

Web3, the new generation of the Internet, may soon play a significant role in the industry. This was revealed by our latest automotive study on Web3, metaverse, and blockchain which surveyed 1,439 consumers in Germany and the US in February 2022.

But even though Web3 and blockchain offer numerous use cases and are increasing interest, a clear gap between generations remains. The overarching finding: different generations, different paradigms. Boomers (50 years or older) reported less-than-average interest in Web3 and tend to see it as an improvement of the existing digital landscape. Gen Z (18 to 34 years old) on the other hand seem more enthusiastic and value applications in new or not yet existing virtual worlds.

But what does this discovery mean for automotive companies? From our study results we identified three key learnings that will help you overcome generational challenges and grasp growth opportunities:

1. Web3 and blockchain use cases should prioritize targeting Gen Z to accelerate adoption

Web3 is gaining traction. 40 percent of all respondents have a basic understanding of Web3, associating it with the following dimensions: virtual worlds (i.e., the metaverse), fintech, trust and digital ownership, as well as decentralized communities.

We broke down these four dimensions into 18 B2C use cases. Respondents were then asked to indicate the extent of their interest. It became obvious that there is a significantly higher interest among young early adopters across all four dimensions. Zooming in on the use cases raising interest for both groups, it appears as well that boomers prefer to “improve the old”, while younger consumers are highly interested in exploring new virtual worlds.

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Top 5 applications for boomers:

1) Car service records: Using the blockchain to keep a tamper-proof digital record of ownership, mileage, and service history.

2) Charge-chain: Using a universal charging and payment system with a blockchain-based module in the vehicle to enable charging an electric vehicle anywhere.

3) Carbon emission tracking: Using blockchain records to have an overview of CO2 emissions.

4) Traceability of vehicle parts: Being able to track vehicle parts.

5) Car e-wallet: A tool that automatically makes small payments (micro payments) such as paying parking, or toll fees, or buying gas when needed.

Top 5 applications for Gen Z:

1) Traceability of vehicle parts: Being able to track vehicle parts.

2) In-car AR/VR (Augmented Reality/Virtual Reality) metaverse gateway: Passengers can connect the vehicle to a virtual world and play games with virtual reality headsets that incorporate the vehicle’s movements.

3) VR configurator & virtual sales: The ability to explore, virtually configure, and test new cars in a digital environment, such as virtual reality.

4) Digital identity: A digital driver’s license, for example.

5) Tradable loyalty token: Consumers can earn digital tokens issued by the automaker to encourage loyalty – tokens can be redeemed for a variety of perks and traded on exchange platforms.

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2. The future blockchain ecosystem should consider multiple perspectives, from directly fixing consumer problems to innovative commercial platforms

Overall, respondents gave solid ratings for applications offering disruptive marketing potential. These include:

Car-wallet for micro payment

Why it matters: Micro payment enables countless services to be charged based on usage, therefore it is much more aligned with intrinsic value

Car usage and service records

Why it matters: It allows for increased trust and fairer second-hand prices. It also drives aftersales loyalty, provided repair jobs are only recorded in the ledger if performed at eligible authorized mechanics

VR configurator and virtual shop

Why it matters: VR offers the possibility to gamify, hyper-personalize and contextualize customer touchpoints and sales experience in the metaverse

Tradable loyalty tokens

Why it matters: Loyalty tokens can become a major strategic and tactical marketing tool, merging the entire marketing mix into a unified commercial platform

3. Signification monetization potential is up for grabs – but this requires new ways of thinking as well as radically new competencies

Several use-cases combine both strong consumer interest and monetization potential. Looking at how respondents rated the different use cases, there is a sizeable number of opportunities with potential future commercial viability.

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Monetization potential is evident – but market dynamics will be fundamentally different. In order to achieve success with Web3, organizations need to adapt their go-to-market strategies and address blockchain-specific topics, such as tokenomics design and the interplay with existing monetization approaches.

Rethinking monetization strategies and building new competencies

Our 2022 Web3 Automotive Study reveals that despite a clear generation gap, Web3, blockchain, and the metaverse are gaining traction. Boomers tend to value improving existing systems, while Gen Z consumers seek to explore new virtual environments – indicating how different customer interactions and user experience will be in the future.

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Companies that want to achieve success with Web3 need to adapt their go-to-market strategies and address blockchain-specific topics. Monetization potential is promising – you just have to rethink your strategy to generate the results you desire.

Want to know more about how to improve your monetization potential? As advisors with experience in supporting across the entire Web3 ecosystem, we provide you with the essential tools to help your business grow. Reach out to our experts to find out how you can make your company futureproof.