CVS Files to Trademark its Pharmacy and Health Clinics in the Metaverse
CVS Health is looking to be the first pharmacy in the metaverse. The drugstore and health services company filed for a trademark to sell virtual goods, NFTs and provide healthcare services, joining major retailers like Walmart and Nike. In its filing with U.S. Patent Trade Office, CVS is looking to trademark its logo and to provide an online store, as well as downloadable virtual goods, including “prescription drugs, health, wellness, beauty and personal care products.” CVS also seeks to bring the health services it provides in its in-store clinics and its telehealth platform to the virtual setting.
Total Retail's Take: One of the biggest themes to emerge in the early part of 2022 is retailers seeking to identify their place in the metaverse and, more importantly, how they can monetize that position. CVS is the latest retailer to put its stake in the virtual world. However, is this a case of retailers chasing after the latest shiny object and feeling that they have to be in the metaverse because "everyone else is doing it," or is there potentially real value to be had by having a brand presence in the metaverse? The bottom line for retailers is that they want to meet their customers where they're spending their time, and increasingly that's in the virtual world.
However, there are certainly those that question the need for brands to rush to be in the metaverse — including dedicating the time and resources needed to do so in a meaningful way. In fact, as this recent article from Total Retail suggests, brands can't yet be in the metaverse because it doesn't yet exist. Time will tell if the metaverse is the next big thing or the next big bust. For the time being, I'm hedging towards the latter — albeit with my admittedly rudimentary knowledge of the subject matter.