Repeat after me: the metaverse \u2026 is not \u2026 the same \u2026 as web3.Before a brand embarks into web3, it\u2019s crucial that they have a basic understanding of what they\u2019re talking about. This doesn\u2019t always come easily. Blockchain technology is so new and, in many ways, so alien to the ways in which we\u2019ve come to use technology (both as a means for sharing information and as a means for interacting with one another), that it almost always requires some time to become educated about how it works and why it matters. It\u2019s like embarking on a trip to a foreign country: before you step onto the plane, it\u2019s always wise to teach yourself a bit about the customs, geography and language that you\u2019ll be navigating. Without a base-level understanding, you\u2019re likely to be overwhelmed by culture shock \u2013 not to mention laughed at for being a clueless tourist. Here\u2019s the bottom line: before marketers start publicly discussing web3, they must have a basic lay of the land. This includes, of course, being able to speak and understand the lingo (you can check out our web3 glossary here); but you must also know what to avoid.Here are five of the most common mistakes that marketers make when discussing web3:1. Launching NFTs without incorporating utilityThe most successful NFTs are much more than just pieces of virtual artwork; they\u2019re gateways into broader experiences, communities or perks. They impart some form of utility. \u201cIf people are selling NFTs without utility, and without communicating a plan for how they\u2019ll gain utility over time, that\u2019s definitely less exciting to a user than an NFT that has really awesome utility in it,\u201d says web3 entrepreneur and Serotonin chief executive Amanda Cassatt.Don\u2019t launch NFTs unless they come equipped with a utility that will be of legitimate value to your target audience. 2. Underemphasizing the central role of communityWeb3, at least in the eyes of many of its true believers, is all about community. At present, there tends to be stark dividing line between brands and \u2019consumers\u2019. But in the age of decentralization, that line is being blurred. It\u2019s no longer merely a transactional relationship \u2013 it\u2019s one defined by collaboration and shared ownership. Web3 \u201cwill introduce a whole new type of customer-to-brand relationship, where the consumer is not just a loyal advocate or even participant, but an actual shareholder and co-creator,\u201d says Kate Watts, chief executive of Long Dash.Cassatt adds: \u201cThe word \u2018community\u2019 isn\u2019t just a rebrand of the word \u2018consumer\u2019; it isn\u2019t a euphemism for \u2018audience\u2019.\u201d Always be sure to use the word \u2019community\u2019 with clarity and purpose \u2013 and with a game plan for being able to back up your words with action.3. Conflating the metaverse with web3We can\u2019t emphasize this one enough: the metaverse and web3 are not synonymous. The former is a blockchain-based virtual realm, accessible through virtual reality (VR) and some open-world online games, whereas the latter is an umbrella term used to describe the full suite of decentralized technologies that have been made possible through the advent of the blockchain. Don\u2019t fall into the trap of thinking that the metaverse and web3 are one-in-the-same. 4. Getting distracted from what matters most (your audience)New technologies can be eye-catching, but marketers shouldn\u2019t let themselves lose sight of their fundamental mission: solving customers\u2019 problems. The adoption of radical new technologies has a tendency to follow a certain pattern. \u201cWhen you\u2019re in the peak of a hype cycle, the protagonist is the technology \u2026 When the hype dies down, we get back to basics, and you realize that the protagonist is the customer,\u201c says TJ Leonard, founder and chief executive of Storyblocks. When the internet first went online, for example, it was treated by some as if it was just another form of IP \u2013 to be owned and operated by certain brands \u2013 before it became clear that it was going to be a ubiquitous technology, a substrate for civilization itself. \u201cRight now there\u2019s this rushing sound as everyone tries to self-identify as a web3 company,\u201d Leonard says. \u201cThe hype will die down, 95% of the companies will fail, and we\u2019ll be left with some really meaningful new technology that businesses will have to evaluate \u2013 alongside mobile and alongside traditional web as a mechanism for solving their customers\u2019 problems.\u201d5. Giving up on web3Yes, the crypto market is going through some tough times. But that doesn\u2019t mean that brands should be abandoning all hope for the future of web3 \u2013 doing so would be like throwing in the towel on the internet after the dotcom bubble burst. Similarly, just because Meta has been facing some criticism for the apparent quality of Mark Zukerberg\u2019s Horizon Worlds avatar does not mean that the metaverse is a lost cause. \u201cWe have gotten so caught up in how early and distinct applications of blockchain such as crypto are broken, risky, speculative, or simply irrational that we are missing the bigger opportunity,\u201d says Watts. \u201cHistory is littered with examples of early innovation resistance and vocal skepticism, but rather than dismiss web3 or too quickly jump on the bandwagon, we should begin to understand what practical applications brands can apply now to gain an early competitive edge.\u201dThese are very early days. Don\u2019t be so quick to eulogize web3 when it is, in fact, still being born. For more, sign up for The Drum\u2019s Inside the Metaverse weekly newsletter here.