Patrón concocts cocktail-themed virtual quests in a bigger bet on the metaverse

Dive Brief:

  • Patrón designed a virtual gamified experience on the Decentraland platform that can be experienced during two weekends in August, according to a press release.
  • “Summer Made Sensational: A PATRÓN Pop-Up Series” features cocktail-themed quests and virtual venues to explore. Visitors are greeted by a host and tasked by a bartender to seek drink ingredients for each. Completing a mission opens a portal to the next location.
  • Participants can claim a limited-edition cocktail jacket and collect badges to upgrade the gear. Acquiring three badges enters users for a chance to win a trip for two to Punta Mita, Mexico, layering a real-world element into the campaign as the premium tequila marketer continues to experiment in the metaverse.

Dive Insight:

Patrón is quickly leveling up its metaverse strategy, suggesting its early experiments have shown promise. The tequila marketer was a latecomer to non-fungible tokens (NFT), releasing its first take on the digital collectibles concept back in June. Through a partnership with BlockBar.

Now, the brand is rolling out a richer experience through Decentraland, a platform that offers web-based access — a factor that could help Patrón reach a broader set of consumers who might not own pricey virtual reality headsets or be familiar with metaverse spaces. Still, visitors will need to complete a few steps to enter, including creating a metamask wallet and digital character and verifying they are 21 or older.

Most early metaverse activations have centered around online gaming and Patrón is taking a page from that playbook with its pop-up series. Each of the three “quests” is dedicated to a seasonal cocktail that includes Patrón tequila, with the brand asking visitors to make a Perfect Paloma, Silver & Soda and Añejo Highball. The drinks also correspond to themed locations that open as tasks are successfully completed: a jazz club, flamingo bar and metaverse festival.

While exploring Decentraland, Patrón fans can wear a limited-availability cocktail jacket, with the option to upgrade the wearable to a rarer gold variant by completing all three of the quests in the same weekend. One winner will also secure an expenses-paid trip to Mexico, a more tangible prize that might draw in consumers who would otherwise be trepidatious about dipping their toes in the metaverse.

Patrón’s contest operates in a limited window, running the weekends of Aug. 12-14 and Aug. 19-21 from Friday at 5 pm ET to Monday at 4 am ET. The constrained time frame may add a sense of urgency to the activation and push more people to try it lest they lose out on their chance for a getaway. The marketer is encouraging people to post about their Decentraland adventures using the #PatronTequilaverse hashtag, potentially extending its reach on social media.

Greater skepticism of the metaverse has emerged as the appetite for mainstream adoption remains unproven and NFTs see their value and trading activity crater. Marketers have adjusted course by imbuing their NFTs with more practical valueincluding real-world rewards and membership access, versus simply operating as pieces of digital paraphernalia, The Wall Street Journal reported.

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