[Soul] Huang Ziyang: The social Metaverse conforms to the new social trend of Generation Z, and is a virtual world parallel to reality

Meta universe, the next social era.

Is the meta universe a bubble or a real future? 36Kr held the Advanced Experience·Meta Universe Summit in Shenzhen on November 24. The summit invited many investors, scholars and industry changers, including Cai Weide, professor of Beijing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics and expert of international inter-chain network, Xu Lin, vice president of Haima Cloud strategy, Guo Cheng, president of STEPVR, and special assistant to the CEO of “Soul” Huang Ziyang, He Wei, vice president of Chizicheng Technology, Song Lei, co-founder and CTO of EM3, Li Renjie, co-head of NetEase Fuxi Lab, Du Zhenglin, head of Tencent’s magic core market, and many other guests discussed the new development trend of the metaverse industry.

Since they were born in a period of great development of the Internet, the Z generations grew up with the Internet and are the aboriginals of the Internet. Therefore, compared with those born in the 70s, 80s, and 90s, they are more accustomed to consuming entertainment and social content carried by virtual carriers. The world of Generation Z, a young group, has also begun to gradually show a trend of fusion of virtual and reality.

If Metaverse is the next stop for the development of the mobile Internet, then Gen Z is the first generation of Metaverse. Their new needs and trends for social interaction are also the foundation and internal motivation for Soul to build the “Social Metaverse”.

Huang Ziyang , special assistant to Soul CEO , believes that there are five characteristics of “social meta-universe”: virtual avatar, social assets, immersion, economic system, and inclusiveness. The future social meta-universe will be a virtual world parallel to reality and real-time online. Being in it, people can rely on virtual avatars and based on personal interest maps or recommendations to experience a variety of immersive social scenes, communicate and entertain together in a close-to-real common experience, and finally find like-minded partners and establish social connections.

The following is the transcript of the speech delivered by Soul CEO Huang Ziyang at the Wise Summit:

[Soul] Huang Ziyang: The social Metaverse conforms to the new social trend of Generation Z, and is a virtual world parallel to reality

First, a look at this big picture, are behind this chart is Soul users on the platform created by the picture , which also come from some of our personality mall platform to sell virtual avatar, to complete the picture of these people, Known as the “face pincher” by everyone, this term has also been reported by many media recently and has been widely discussed.

This seems to be a new profession that will be widely recognized in the near future, and it comes from Soul. We learned that on Soul, face pinchers design avatars with new personalities and sell them in the personalized store. Users who like it think which avatar fits his personality will buy it. In this way, some Face pinchers can actually benefit 45,000 in one month, which shows how strong young people’s needs for character creation and virtual images are, and this is also a detail and manifestation of future social patterns.

Unlike other traditional social platforms, Soul puts more emphasis on the concept of virtual social. Everyone has a virtual identity on the platform, and everyone is matched with each other based on interest graphs and social portraits . And this kind of social logic has also contributed to the birth of the “face pincher” and formed the prototype of a closed-loop transaction. To a certain extent, this is also a result of the construction and exploration of the “social meta-universe” we proposed at the beginning of this year.

[Soul] Huang Ziyang: The social Metaverse conforms to the new social trend of Generation Z, and is a virtual world parallel to reality

The logical construction of the “social meta-universe” is actually related to Soul’s original intention.

Five years ago, our founder found that her expressive needs could not be realized. She wanted to make the world free of lonely people, but it was often difficult to satisfy in real social situations. Even though there were many mature instant messaging software at the time, due to the pressure of acquaintances, it was difficult to express some feelings that really wanted to talk.

Based on this, she wants to create an app that can freely express without pressure, publish daily life and feelings, and receive quality resonance in time, which is the Soul we see now. It is also driven by this original intention that Soul presented its own set of product scenarios and forms early on, forming a smart, vivid, and rich social place parallel to the real world.

At the same time, Soul’s original intention fits the changes in the social needs of young people. Because of the different growth environments of young people in this era, their social needs are changing.

The young people we are talking about in this era are the so-called Generation Z. The growth environment of this generation is completely different from those born in the 70s and 80s.

The first point is that they grew up in the Internet and even the mobile Internet era. The Internet is like air and water to them. They learn and entertain through the Internet, and spend far more time watching their mobile phones than watching TV. Soul once conducted a survey and found that more than 40% of Gen Z spend more than 6 hours online every day.

[Soul] Huang Ziyang: The social Metaverse conforms to the new social trend of Generation Z, and is a virtual world parallel to reality

Recently, there is a very popular term called “social phobia”. In fact, this has become a portrayal of some young people in reality. Due to the pressure of reality, their sense of boundary is getting stronger and stronger, but when they are online When communicating, especially when they take off their coat of reality and communicate without pressure, they are willing to output their opinions and become social experts.

The second point is that generation Z grew up in a family with only one child, which allowed them to get the attention of the whole family since they were young. They have a very strong self-awareness and desire to seek outside recognition. They have a higher demand for the realization of self-worth, which makes them pursue Higher-quality social interaction, caring more about similar interests, and willing to express their opinions and initiate topics

From the Top 10 topics discussed by Soul users, it is not difficult to see that they have a deeper understanding and pursuit of topics of interest. For example, the amount of discussion that pays attention to literature and history is better than that of celebrities. They are also curious about technology and have their own understanding of health preservation, a topic that did not seem to be the focus of young people in the past.

For another example, Soul’s Gravity Slip feature allows users to add their own Gravity Slips to attract people with the same hobbies. Using more gravitational signs on Soul is the glory of the king, likes to cook, unique people, etc. It can be seen that they are eager to be recognized for their pursuit of social games, life, and some niche hobbies.

[Soul] Huang Ziyang: The social Metaverse conforms to the new social trend of Generation Z, and is a virtual world parallel to reality

The third point is that they grew up in the era of worry-free food and clothing, and they paid more attention to spiritual pursuits, which led them to pay more attention to spiritual fit in social interactions instead of blindly pursuing external appearance. They can recreate a personal setting that suits their own personality and pursuits in the online world, and get to know everyone they meet more efficiently.

Earlier we also mentioned the face-squeezing profession on Soul. On Soul, users can pinch their faces and wrap themselves with their favorite materials, thus forming another self-personality in this virtual community.

And we believe that if Metaverse is regarded as the next stop in the development of the mobile Internet, then Gen Z is the first generation of Metaverse. Their new needs and trends for social interaction are precisely what Soul builds the “Social Metaverse”. Foundation and inner motivation.

It is the insight into the changes in the social trends of Generation Z that Soul’s products, gameplay and form will continue to iterate and innovate. For example, in order to satisfy their desire to create virtual characters, we can pinch our faces and sign ourselves. In order to meet their social needs, we can initiate group chat parties, which can initiate a variety of topics and find people who fit in with their hearts.

All this shows that we are already unconsciously exploring the scenarios and applications of future social interactions, and the future social interactions are social interactions in the meta-universe scenario, which is the “social meta-universe”.

[Soul] Huang Ziyang: The social Metaverse conforms to the new social trend of Generation Z, and is a virtual world parallel to reality

For this reason, we not only put forward the concept of “social meta-universe”, but also unearthed more specific features of this concept. We have summarized the five characteristics of the “social meta-universe”: virtual avatars, social assets, immersion, economic system, and inclusiveness. These five characteristics are not only aimed at the development of Soul, but also a prospect for the future development of the “social meta-universe” industry, and an exploration of the universality of the “social meta-universe” industry.

The first is the virtual avatar. Entering the social meta-universe, users can use various tools to create their own virtual images and rebuild their virtual avatars. With this virtual avatar, users can interact with others in various social scenarios, thereby establishing social connections and depositing social assets. At present, some people have begun to explore the operation of virtual idols and the development of virtual people. The iteration and innovation of these technologies will bring more empowerment to virtual avatars.

For example, on Soul, we are not only limited to flat avatar display, but also developed a 3D pinch face based on 3D Avatar, which is suitable for various social scenes . Soul has not supported real-life photos as avatars since its inception. After removing the influence of physical factors such as appearance and geographic location, users rely on self-created avatars for stress-free self-expression and relationship exploration, construction and maintenance.

Social assets, including social portraits, interactive content, and social networks, will continue to accumulate in the social meta-universe, becoming an important digital asset for users, and will become the social meta-universe to provide users with more ecological services. Important foundation.

At the same time, as these social assets continue to accumulate and develop, they will even gradually derive a unique “social meta-universe” culture and civilization. At present, the Soul platform has derived youthful language habits and high-spirited youth culture and so on.

For example, there are more than 1,000 interest tags on Soul, as well as the most trendy interest groups , which can reflect the collective consciousness of contemporary young people brought about by this “social meta-universe” . Soul users have brought the precipitation of social assets such as portraits, content, and relationships, making Soul’s social scene more suitable for the social needs of this generation of young people.

Immersion. Through UGC and other output methods, the content of the social meta-universe will show great richness and scale effect, and the source of energy will continue to maintain the driving force of rapid and sustainable growth . These rich contents can satisfy users’ demands for high content consumption and realize an immersive user experience.

In view of this, we continue to introduce multiple scenes and functions such as Pet Planet, Group Chat Party, Soul Werewolf, etc. , to help users enjoy an immersive and common experience, and gain relaxation and pleasure while feeling immersed and present . At present, Soul is also committed to increasing the layout of the technical level, hoping to continue to improve the immersive experience of users in the process of using Soul by adding more virtual reality technologies such as AR and VR.

Inclusiveness: The social meta-universe is an all-encompassing virtual space, where everyone has the opportunity to create, discover, explore, and find similar interests.

Users on Soul can explore and create diverse UGC/PGC/PUGC content and works. This not only means that the content carrier can be in multiple forms including graphics, voice, video, etc., but also refers to multiple content themes. At the same time, users can communicate and share daily life and various interests or hobbies of the general public or niche in Soul.

Based on this characteristic, Soul has become a high-growth and highly active platform ecology. In March 2021 alone, each content creator on Soul generated an average of 5.9 new posts per month. A total of 67.8 million new posts were created that month. In the same month, platform content received 574 million replies . In addition, the proportion of monthly active users on Soul’s interaction and content creation are leading in the industry. The infrastructure of “social meta-universe” content creation has been demonstrated, and there will be more diverse and realistic scenarios in the future.

Economic system: In the social meta-universe, a complete economic system allows users to realize the experience of making money, spending, trading, and so on. In Soul, users can purchase and consume various services to further enhance their personalized experience in the Soul application, including more user recommendation opportunities, virtual gifts, Giftmojis, and so on.

In addition, on Soul, users can get corresponding rewards through their own skills. For example, Soul provides users with interesting face pinching tools. Users can put their own works in Soul’s avatar store for other users to purchase. In the future , Soul has the possibility of forming a certain economic system .

It is the construction of this economic system that can allow Soul to form a business path for users and the platform to benefit and grow prosperously. We also look forward to working with all walks of life to explore the ideal state of the social meta-universe and more commercialization possibilities in the future.

Soul’s current profit methods include value-added services, brand cooperation, etc. For example, in value-added services, we have opened paid memberships, and use Soul coins and virtual items to drive users’ consumption in this social world. Users can purchase virtual items that increase social interest by obtaining exclusive currency in the Soul station, and interact with each other. Give away and deepen the relationship.

In fact, brand cooperation is not only limited to the conventional model of various types of advertisements on the site.

In fact, Soul relies on its open platform capabilities to cooperate with well-known companies and brand partners that the younger generation loves. Through natural interaction and contact, it allows users to generate recognition, recognition and ultimately facilitate transactions . In the process, the cooperation with the brand will not affect the user experience, and will even become a part of the experience in this “social meta-universe”.

A typical example is the innovative social e-commerce function of “Giftmoji” we launched. That is, using Soul as the platform and merchants and products as the media to connect users at both ends of the social relationship . When two users are chatting in Soul, they can choose to select products in Soul’s Goods Store and send them to each other. Without revealing the actual addresses of both parties, the good things are delivered to each other.

This kind of gift can not only help the two parties interact and enhance each other’s social experience, it is actually a way of breaking the dimensional wall of virtual and reality. This also reflects an important feature of the meta universe, that is, virtual and reality are linked . In addition, in combination with the “brand number”, Soul helps brands create personal settings, manage their own private domain traffic, and complete the entire closed-loop planting-consumption transaction through the platform Haowu Mall, which also allows users to achieve one-stop shopping.

It can be seen that the good thing model is very popular with young people, because for young people, experience is more important than material. The surprise of receiving virtual gifts and breaking the dimensional wall.

We are very optimistic about the business of “Giftmoji”. Because of high-quality traffic, dense network, and gradually enriched brand ecology, Soul has actually formed a complete small ecology of people, goods, and markets as well as self-closing loops.

In this ecology, our SSR will also become an important part.

SSR stands for Soul Super Real, which refers to the coolest, most real, and most energetic creator of premium content on Soul planet. At present , there are nearly 5,000 SSRs on the Soul platform , covering nearly 30 vertical categories such as music, painting, emotion, dressing, face pinching, and ACG, and covering multiple niche vertical categories. They are the representatives of Generation Z, the adherents of traditional culture, and the most potential content creators.

Compared with the big V on other platforms, the biggest feature of Soul’s SSR is that although it also has high-quality creative ability, the relationship with other users is not pyramid-shaped. In fact, SSR and other users are equal. The two parties are not a pyramid-like looking-up relationship, but friends in parallel time and space. In fact, it is easier to have a sense of trust between each other .

In this way, SSR can actually become a better bridge between the brand and the user, helping both parties communicate.

In the future world, spiritual resonance and the exchange of ideas are becoming more and more important. Identity becomes the underlying influencing factor of everything; on the basis of identity determining value, creation becomes a way to show one’s thoughts and soul , such as Soul’s face and the individual. The homepage is all self-creation. In the social meta-universe, creation has also become the front end of social interaction. The future world will also greatly stimulate people’s creativity, and society will become more and more colorful.

Based on the five characteristics of the “social meta-universe” we mentioned earlier, in order to realize these visions, Soul also has a very clear path plan for its own construction and development in the future. In 2022, Soul hopes to continue to create a social product with three-dimensional avatars, gamification of social experience, intelligent communication, and decentralized co-construction.

The future social meta-universe will be a virtual world parallel to reality and real-time online. Here, people can rely on their own virtual avatars and based on their own interest maps or recommendations to experience a variety of immersive social scenes. Communicate and entertain together during the experience, and finally find like-minded partners and establish social connections. In this social meta-universe, what we want to achieve is empathy, sharing, co-construction, and symbiosis.

Everyone gathers together based on interests and hobbies, and realizes empathy in spiritual resonance; everyone will realize sharing, and sharing is based on equal interaction, not individualism; then, we build a meta-universe world based on responsibility and everyone builds My own beautiful virtual home; in the end, we hope to achieve symbiosis on the platform, that is, “harmony without difference”, where everyone can express themselves and find like-minded partners.

Metaverse is a direction for the entire Internet industry. It covers work, friends, and games. As a social platform, Soul is a social platform. Our mission is to let the world have no lonely people. Social Metaverse also paints a blueprint for us.

At present, the exploration of the meta-universe is still a long-term goal, and we also look forward to more people joining the ranks of exploring the “social meta-universe”. We work hard together, thank you everyone.

Thanks!

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