CEBU CITY, Philippines — The COVID-19 pandemic caused a ‘lasting change” in the way people think and behave.
It also introduce a lot of Filipinos to digital technology, which is the way of the future, according to Donald Patrick Lim, chief operating officer of DITO CME and chief innovation officer for Udenna Corporation.
Lim, who is known as the Father of Digital Marketing in the Philippines, said the pandemic forced a sudden shift to digital marketing.
In his presentation on “Digital Technology for Sustainability” on the second day of the Tourism Summit that was held in Cebu City on Friday, July 21, Lim said that many started to go cashless and they continued to do so to date.
People also started to patronize online shopping applications.
And as we move forward, the world is also moving towards the use of Artificial Intelligence (AI), he added.
The Great Pause
Lim said that when the pandemic hit, many were caught off guard. It disrupted the way people lived.
But for him the pandemic was a “great pause” that led to the way people and businesses behaved now.
“Maybe Covid is not just a disease, but a wake up call for humanity to really become more responsible for taking care of our planet.” he said.
With the implementation of travel restrictions, many were confined to their homes. Many workers were allowed to do remote work.
Even meetings and some of the gatherings started to go virtual.
Lim said that at first, all of these changes caused discomfort. Eventually, people started to adapt and adjusted the way that they lived.
During his talk at the Tourism Summit, Lim presented four opportunities “that represent our present and will continue in the near future.” These are going cashless, deep linking, generating influencers, and introducing the metaverse.
According to Lim, deep linking was a form of online marketing where potential customers only needed to click a particular application that would lead them to their desired online shop.
He said that the fourth opportunity, metaverse, allows people to do a lot of things virtually with the help of avatars while they remain at the comforts of their homes.
An avatar, according to Google, is an icon or figure that represents a particular person in video games, internet forums, etc.
Through the use of an avatar, a person can virtually do anything like attend concerts, play games, visit different places, mee friends if you belong to the same metaverse, and so such more.
Lim said that the metaverse would even be applicable to the tourism industry because it would allow people to experience a particular place without having to go their physically.
“Maybe not today, not next year, but later on you will see bits and pieces of the metaverse be created already.” he said.| Mariele Ocubillo, CTU Intern