The blockchain boom has ushered in the age of Web3 faster than anyone could’ve guessed. And now, non-fungible tokens (NFTs) are allowing artists, businesses and collectors to stake their claim on real assets in the virtual realm.
Brands can see the potential to engage new audiences using NFT production. But how can it become a mainstay of your marketing, rather than another passing fad?
Now (and) Future Trends
The token can take just about any form of media – an image, small animated file or even a sound clip. Few opportunities for branding present themselves like this. (Coming soon: the Fox Agency NFT…?)
In the short term, these hot-ticket items offer the kind of coolness factor that elite influencers can only dream of. But thinking ahead, the longer term prospects of NFTs around transparency and security also make a major selling point, particularly in the B2B landscape.
Next, Find Them!
The defining characteristic of an NFT is its one-of-a-kind…ness. Each one minted gets its own unique digital signature and entry on a public blockchain. At the moment, brands are chasing this to a collectible conclusion of hot ticket, must-have items, as fans place their own value onto each NFT.
Combined with the irresistible lure of the ‘drop’, brands like Coca-Cola and Nike are discovering the real value of NFT marketing. In Coke’s case it’s a huge winner – raising almost $600,000 for charity by offering an exclusive selection of virtual and real-world goodies.
So, in the short term at least, brands can use the inherent value in FOMO to leverage loyalty and increase interest.
New Fangled Technology
For your marketing, this could be rewarding buyers with an NFT for reaching a particular level of purchases, possibly as a badge of membership into a club – with perks. Customers who own the NFT could themselves be in line for free shipping, servicing or repairs – all encoded and enshrined into the metadata of the NFT, the record of which is held on a secure, permanent blockchain.
Promote the exclusivity of the club by opening only a select few slots. That way, if the offer is attractive enough, partners might push themselves further to get into the club through increased spend, or whatever else it may take.
Down the line, if a member no longer needs those benefits for whatever reason, they can either sell it back or sell it on to another interested party. You could even profit by hardwiring in a cut of the selling-on fees. That’s the beauty of blockchain – a permanent record of every transaction logged against your NFT.
No Faking Transparency
That permanent record is the crucial factor for firms worried about security. NFTs are part of blockchain, which is a decentralised technology. It isn’t controlled by any one entity. Imagine your network has a ledger for recording every transaction – you can’t add a new one without approval from all users on the network. And you can’t edit or delete an existing record at all, because new entries store data from all the entries which precede it.
In the short term, this means your entirely unique NFT / image of a disinterested monkey is safe from would-be thieves (provided you take good care of your crypto keys).
In the longer term it makes for an even more interesting pivot, as brands won’t have to tout their trustworthiness through every channel – using blockchain means it’ll be pretty much a given. This can save valuable resource on security and make processes much more efficient.
Night-night For Trust?
It’ll be interesting to see what going ‘trustless’ means for banks and brands who otherwise rely on piling extra value on the benefits of security in their marketing communications.
With these characteristics and capabilities baked into blockchain, the system can’t be cracked. And because all transactions are fully visible, there’s a level of transparency you don’t usually get from the world of finance – every provider by its very nature becomes 100% open with its transactional history.
If anything, the way consumers compare banks and other financial providers when it comes to trust and security will vanish, if and when they begin on the blockchain. This leaves an even playing field for marketers; a clean slate on which to stack other USPs.
Brands could – and should – start that preparation right now, because we’ve still got a long way to go.
Nurturing Future Transactions
It’s still early days when it comes to NFTs – and Web3 in general – so don’t underestimate the power of a bit of educational content. We could blog for days on the misconceptions surrounding the technology, but it would probably save everyone a bit of time just to dispel the myths and deal in straight-up facts.
NFTs can take the form of just about anything audio and visual, which presents a great opportunity to get creative with a campaign.
- A True/False cheat sheet about NFTs would constitute another quick win – an at-a-glance guide to the potential for NFTs both as a short-term cachet of cool and a long-term security solution.
- The same as above, but in the form of a quick video explainer.
- Interview an independent expert and get some answers straight from the source, with the added bonus of expertise and authenticity. Stream the chat live, record it for a podcast, or both.
Noteworthy Final Thoughts
The key here is to take what you know your audience responds to and turn a complicated topic into an easily digestible and actionable output. As an added twist, you could ‘mint’ what you make as an NFT itself. NFT-ception!
The technology behind NFTs isn’t quite mainstream-ready, so another bit of advice would be not to rush into things. Build a solid foundation for customers and invite them to dive into the deep waters of blockchain and NFTs in their own time. And don’t rush it yourself.
Or in other words, Nix Fast Temptations.